I saw a sign in the supermarket yesterday that said: "If your dog is fat. . . you need more exercise." I love that! It's so true! Poor fat doggies, never getting walks! The kind of dog owner a person is says a lot about them. It's not just walks, of course. Some people treat dogs like they're kind of an accessory to their home or their life, something to complete a particular picture they have in their mind: married, two children, beautiful home, nice lawn, two cats, one dog. Assemble all the pieces. Or maybe they gave in to their kids' begging, but don't really have time in their life for a dog, and they don't feel a particular affection for it so it gets to spend a large portion of its life by itself, hungry for love. And dogs are so hungry for love! They're pack animals and I think to have a dog that has to live in the yard by itself is a kind of torture -- for a dog not to get to be with its "pack" -- it's cruelty. Don't get dogs if you can't make them part of your family! Get something inanimate, like an alarm system, or get your kid a really big stuffed animal. Or a cat. Cats don't have the same needs dogs have -- some are really affectionate, it's true, but cats aren't pack animals, and they fare better on paltry amounts of love than dogs do.
The other night when Jim and I got back to his mom's house from spending the evening at his sister's we poured a couple of glasses of wine and sat on the floor with Leroy and read our books for an hour or two, to try to make up for having to leave Leroy home alone all day. He's such a good dog and all he wants out of life is to be around us. He loves long car trips, and I think it's because he gets to have us both in one small space for hours at a time, with the added excitement of strange smells blowing in the window. At home, he's only truly happy when we're both in the same room. If not, he wanders restlessly between us, constantly checking that we're both still there. Shiloh, my husky, wasn't like that. We called her our "downstairs neighbor" because she liked her own space. Ah, dogs. Such wonderful creatures. I hate to think of the sad, love-starved dogs all over the place that get in spastic quivers of excitement on the rare occasions their owners deign to touch them!
Why am I writing about that? I don't know! I'm still in the Flat City; driving tonight down through the Huge Smoggy City and on to San Diego. Looking forward to a glimpse of some California ocean! Really looking forward to the madness of Storm Troopers and nerds and movie stars that is Comic-Con. Been thinking about villains and what I want to say on the panel. Should be fun.
Also fun: my hair!!! I've never had so much fun with my hair. I went with my niece to one of those cheapy mall stores that sells colorful plastic glittery jewelry and barettes that little girls can afford to buy, and I bought some barettes in bright colors. And oh -- my hair, it is no longer pink. I don't think I had a chance to mention that. I went back to the salon. My hair is now. . .
I WISH I could post a photo on this alien computer! See, the pink was a little soft, especially in the back and around my temples, so I went back to the salon the morning of Harry Potter Madness and had it touched up. Or rather, punched up. It came out bright bright magenta and I love it so much more. I weep to see the color sweeping down the drain when I wash it. I wish it would just grow this color with no maintainance. It's so awesome! And the conservative folks in Flat City don't seem bothered by it, though some teenagers hanging out in a gas station in Northern California did murmur that it was "disgusting" -- ha ha! I don't get offended by the opinions of teenagers who spend their Saturday nights hanging out at the gas station. I went into a Borders here to sign the copies of my book they had on hand and the manager told me, musingly, that I didn't look "punk" -- I look like a "children's book character" which is pretty much what I'm going for! (I was wearing a kelly green headband at the time with pink and blue polka dots.) So, it's FUN. Photos to follow!