Greetings from Dogland

Last week was filled with strep throat, fever dreams, and a post that I cried while writing.  Then hundreds and hundreds of people came and left their mark on it and it moved from being a post to being an movement.  And it was awesome. And terrifiying.  And it inspired this email from a girl named Rachel who made me feel a million times better about the state of the world:

Dag, ma’am.
(Also, hi).

A couple of days a friend and I developed what we considered to be a plan of pure genius. We decided that we would get rid of most of the states except for a couple of them, which would move up to Canada to live with us. Chicago could pretty much replace Alberta, and Florida would come and stay in the water near Quebec. Normally I would not consider saving Florida, but my friend is a Quebec Francophone and I am a Toronto Jew, and if we are ever to live in the same place the natural choice is Florida. Then I made a map using my great art school skills, which I have attached. (The map is attached, I mean. Not art school. If you would like such amazing skills as mine, may I direct you to MS Paint? Yes, I may). Then I filled the rest of the states with puppies and considered myself the smartest person in the world.

Then you go and write a post on Tuesday, which I just now saw because I am slow, and I decide I cannot make the states disappear. I do not actually remember why my friend and I came up with our plan, except that I really liked the idea of pulling the state of Florida on a tugboat. Also, there would be a Yiddish newscaster narrating events and he would be all “Oy vey! The alter cockers are all fercockt!”  So, basically, I spend a great deal of time entertaining myself.

Anyway. I will return Florida and Chicago (though I am keeping several Mexican restaurants), and I will even let America have all the puppies, because if I take away all the states (which I can totally do, just look how I did it in the picture), then there would be no you to remind people of awesome and beauty. I am not going to read the comments on the post now because I do not feel like crying today, but I am sure there are even more reminders of what matters in there. Sometimes it is good to think you can invent a new world by moving a bunch of places and then filling other places with puppies, but other times it is good to remember that our own world is not so bad. It has bad in it, more bad than we think we can handle, but it also has so much right-on. So, basically, you articulated the human part of that with a quarter of the words that I used, and you didn’t even involve an alternate universe.

I am pretty sure I am trying to say thank you, and this would have been much too long for the comments. I cannot imagine how it feels to have so many strangers reach out to you, but I hope it maybe makes it less overwhelming if you know that many of the people that reach out to you will find their own way. The kids and the fuckups and the losers (all of which I was deemed, at one point or another) will find their own beauty, and know the value of the simple awesome beauty in others. They’ll find their place, and hopefully they’ll grow up to be people that others reach out to, and not people that do things that cause us all to stop and go “what the?” and make us type overly long things in the first place.

So, yeah, you are pretty okay. If you are ever up here, I will take you on a tour of various pies.


Attached map:

Thank you, Rachel.  Thank you, everyone.  And now…the weekly wrap-up:

The Brad-Pitt-Is-Very-Confused Edition.

    This week on my sex column (which is satirical and vaguely safe for work if your boss isn’t a douche-canoe):

    This week on the internets:

    • I got selected to be Miss March for next years Hot Blogger Calendar but I can’t afford to fly to New York for the photo shoot so instead Karen’s agreed to shoot pictures of me in the most inappropriately themed photo-shoot I can think of.  So far I’m leaning toward “mutilated by zombies”.  Sexy zombies though, because it would be rude to not stay within the theme.

    This week on Good Mom/Bad Mom on the Houston Chronicle:

    This week on shit-I-didn’t-come-up-with-but-wish-I-did-because-it’s-kind-of-awesome:

    This week’s wrap-up sponsored by the Novel Doctor, who isn’t actually sponsoring this post at all and will wonder why he’s even here and if he bought a spot during a drunken blackout but he helped me finish a tough chapter out of the kindness of his heart and this is the only way I have to repay him.  Thanks, Stephen.

    51 thoughts on “Greetings from Dogland

    Read comments below or add one.

    1. All of this talk of red vs. blue states and democrats vs. republicans and gay marriage vs. marriage between a man and a woman and pro-choice vs. anti-abortion – we keep harping on our different beliefs instead of our humanity. It’s so easy to take a stand on a position and think we know all of the answers until we’re confronted with a difficult decision or have a child who doesn’t fit our preconceived mold.

      Your last post and this post remind me of what’s good in people and that there’s hope.

    2. Dear eastern Canada,
      We are way better than Chicago. Or at least, we are way better than the airport in Chicago, which is the only part of Chicago I have ever visited. Also, if Chicago replaces Alberta, then where do the mountains go, because those are important for weather and stuff. Please leave Chicago where it is. If you move it, it may disintegrate from the sheer awesomeness of Alberta and surrounding areas.

      Thank you,

      .-= Random´s last blog ..So Leaf Subsides to Leaf =-.

    3. Thank you for the vagina/hot sauce engagement stories. I really can’t decide which is classier.

      I hope y’all are feeling better.

      As for Brad Pitt signing your picture, be CAREFUL. If he falls in love with you, he will become creepy-assimilation Brad Pitt. Seriously. He will dye his hair and skin to look like yours and wear clothes that match yours. Go look at pics of him with Gwyneth, Jen and Angelina.

      Not cockblocking, just looking out for you.
      .-= Sarah p´s last blog ..I am Georgia O’Keefe =-.

    4. Um. I hate to point out that Chicago is not actually a state. It’s a city in the state of Illinois. And since I live in Illinois, I can attest to the fact that you really don’t want to keep this state and you by no means want to keep Chicago!! They have drive by shootings and gang wars and drugs and it’s just scary. Also, all the really criminal governors of our state (not mentioning any names Blagojevich) came from Chicago and know the mob. Might I suggest Tennessee? I’ve been there many times and it’s a pretty awesome state. Very friendly, rich in history and also the home of country music. Oh and Barbecue.

      .-= Spot´s last blog ..I’m back…sort of… =-.

    5. It must have been quite some drunken blackout because I don’t even remember drinking. But you didn’t owe me anything. Getting a chance to read a chapter of the brilliant insanity that will one day be part of a bestselling book was payment enough.

      Thanks, though. You’re too kind.

      BTW, do you know a good place to have a tattoo removed? I seem to have acquired a rather poorly-drawn zombie Jesus on my forehead. I’m pretty sure if I had been lucid I would have asked for the zombie unicorn.

    6. Homophobic people live everywhere, even Massachusetts and Canada. And open-minded people live everywhere too — even Texas. Houston’s mayor is gay (and member of Mensa! Go nerds!). And that poor girl is openly gay in high school, which is hard enough, and she’s also in Mississippi — and you know what? She’s going to be fine. She’s sensible and very smart, so I’m sure she knows that dancing that last song with her girl is more important than impressing the football team. And maybe she’ll change the world.

      Just like you will.

      p.s. I can’t offer you pie, but I make great brownies.

    7. I want to see a “killing the giant squid” photo shoot. With spearguns, wet suits, and saving Victor and James Garfield from nature’s most overlooked menace. Maybe a Viking helmet.

    8. Dang.
      I did not expect that email to fill up the internet tubes, but I am honoured that it has been Bloggessed (which is a verb now, sort of like Lizzing).

      Now that I am all famous and the Nobel committee is outside my door asking how I came up with the idea of combining Maudite and Manischewitz to create world peace, I must clarify a few things:
      – Alberta, you are not so bad. I do not actually know you, but I know some of your people and they are a-okay. What I really wanted to do was replace Sarnia with Chicago, but my MS Paint skills are not advanced enough that I could write “Chicago” any smaller than I did. Thus, the vast wilderness of Alberta became Chicago, because it took almost the whole province to write its name. Also, I would never actually replace Alberta because you know who lives there? Besides a bunch of people, I mean. WOLVERINES. Also bears and many other things, but, really – WOLVERINES.
      – In awesome mapland, Chicago seceded from Illinois because, well, it is an imaginary land and if Chicago wants to live with the wolverines, no-one says they have to bring East St. Louis with them. For all I know, the howl of the elusive wolverine actually translates to “HECK NO, EAST ST. LOUIS.”

      I did not mean for the map to be a plan for the destruction of America.
      I can see how it might be interpreted as such, what with the tugboats and puppies and Yiddish narrator and all.
      I do not actually remember how the idea came about, except that I was talking about regional snack foods and then I wished that Zabar’s would please move next to me. Then the entire country started moving, and before I knew it Florida was in the Hudson Bay.
      The point is that I would really like some rugelach from Zabar’s, please and thank you.
      Oh, also, that some of my dearest friends are in the great country of dogland (nee America. The country I mean. My friends never had the surname “America.” Well, except for Captain.), and I kind of love many of the places they live in. Heck, I have even lived in a couple of different states over the years (U.S. states, not mental ones. Well, actually, both), and I would never truly wish them into the ocean.

      Anyway. I must go and figure out how to convince the Nobel Committee to let me accept my prize without changing out of my pyjamas.

    9. Ha ha ha, those crazy Canucks, always coming up with crazy ideas of how to solve this crazy world’s problems! Ha ha… … haaaa…

      Thanks for sharing Rachel’s email (no, I don’t know her, even though I live within five hours drive of her in the same province – I *know*). I’m not sure that would be how I’d solve the world’s problems, but at least her ideas involved some serious geographical considerations and puppies, whereas mine are usually more political… Like dictatorships, or brain-washing… Or both. But I suppose puppies are very camera-friendly, so I might incorporate them into my plans from now on. If the zombie frog army doesn’t work. Or even if it does. I like puppies too.

      Feel better from strep. That stuff really sucks.
      .-= jenny gee´s last blog ..New blog =-.

    10. Oh, and incidentally, with New Florida parked in Hudson’s Bay, I think Rachel may have come up with a cure for the unfortunate-Speedo-that-no-one-needed-to-see. Just sayin’ – have you looked at the temperature of Churchill, Manitoba lately? No? They call it The Arctic for a reason… And Polar Bear Provincial Park is on the border of New Florida and Ontario… Anyway…
      .-= jenny gee´s last blog ..New blog =-.

    11. OMG YOU ARE ALL AWESOMETASTIC. has turned into a puppy worshiping love fest, such a change from the kitten mitten days.

    12. Rachel = Awesome.
      Jenny, The Bloggess = Super Awesome.
      I didn’t need to see the dog panties. Could have gone on my whole life without seeing frilly dog panties. Kinda disturbed now.
      Also confused. Why is Brad Pitt autographing all the pics of The Bloggess?
      .-= Kernut´s last blog ..4-Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss =-.

    13. I love Rachael’s letter. I have a Rachael, also, who loves puppies and expresses herself in an equally creative manner and at first I thought….but then…no, we don’t live in Canada.
      .-= Chicken´s last blog ..I is for Indian =-.

    14. Dang it! Now you make me love Canada even more. Ugh. Have I immigrated to the wrong country? (Ok, any of you fuckers tell me to go back where I came from I will come and stab you because you are not being nice, hhmmm k?)

      Anyway, please let Rachael know that she can totally keep Chicago too because eh, I am in Chicago, and I don’t mind being in Canada the way things are going. Or maybe she can wait until 2012. If Palin becomes POTUS, please airlift Chicago out of Illinois and plant it in Alberta (it seems huge on the map so I am pretty sure there is space for Chicago). Thanks.

      The proposal story? Ha. Try telling the “how he proposed to me” story at a polite, stuffy party. 😉 No, really. Would mix things up a little.

      I am so excited that you are going to be Miss March. Is there a reason why you are Miss March? If Chookooloonks is going to take your photos, you have nothing to worry about. BUT you are gorgeous and photogenic to begin with. You are going to look Fabulous! Will you be sending us sign copies? That would be totally cool.
      .-= subWOW´s last blog ..Let’s be creative! That’s so… BLEEP! =-.

    15. I realize I’m too late for this to be on you’re “Weirdest Things People Sent Me this Month” and it’s probably nowhere near as weird as other stuff. Just thought it was funny and tame enough that you won’t be too offended that it made me think of you. enjoy, you terrifically wonderful human being.

      Oh, I’m trying to bring back the word “terrific.” Seems to have fallen out of favor lately. And “terrific” is a good word to describe that email Karen sent you. Plus, ask if I can get a tour of pies. I like pie.

    16. I asked my husband how blind people know when to stop wiping. He said, “Well, how do they know how much to feed their fish?” When I asked him why a blind person would have a fish he said, “Well, they have dogs. Why not a fish?”

    17. Why March? No idea. They choose a different month each time to have a vote-off about. I ended up on the March voting block for some reason. Maybe I’ll do something about Caesar.

    18. see, the problem with moving around states is that then everyone will catch on and start moving around their states and countries, and I’m pretty sure we would end up crowding the south because lets face it, nobody likes being cold, but then I guess we could temporarily tow the states and countries back up for ski season. (wait, don’t birds already do this?)

      which is all fine except it would get increasingly difficult to go anywhere because it would be hard to find that place.Maybe we should just teach people to be humane and treat others as to themselves (and puppies too). or something even more radical, how about investing in education and childcare and hope we grow decent human beings?
      .-= angelica´s last blog ..I had a threesome the other day =-.

    19. Like Rachel, I wish I lived next door to Zabar’s. The thing is, I once practically did live next door to Zabar’s (within three short blocks). Where they had seven men cutting lox!!!! Now I eat prepackaged smoked salmon from Costco. It’s tasty. Costco’s bagels, however, suck. Not that any of this is relevant…

      Love this blog. It’s full of surprises.
      .-= Ginny´s last blog ..Answers to Life’s Perturbing Questions =-.

    20. First…loved Rachel’s letter. Second…of course you are awesome…you live with Barnaby Jones and James Garfield! Third, Fairy sculpted erotic art is just freaky and how on earth did I not know that a masturbation-a-thon existed? Thank goodness you are here to keep me up to date on what the young folks are doing these days 😉
      .-= Jenn´s last blog ..Sorry I Was Distracted By Naked Yoga =-.

    21. I strongly veto this proposition as I know my homeland of The Ozarks would get dropped into the Ocean or moved into some cruddly land mass, like Greenland. And then how would the world ever know moonshine and Party Cove?

      And I’m sick of puppies with all this puppy cam nonsense and my own company’s misguided decision to put a photo of a “Daily Puppy” in our newsletter as though it would erase the fact that we’re trapped in cubes 50 hours a week because at least it’s not a cage filled with poop at the shelter?

      I do love the end message, though, that we gotta take the bad with the good and remember that the bad makes headlines, but the good makes our day.

    22. I was sent the kids talking about stuff he hates last week and I have watched it about 179089 times because it is ‘effing awesome. I love when he talks about sitting on the same side of the booth because I hate that more than anything- seriously you cannot be so hot for eachother you can’t be on the otherside of the table- you makes us all look bad!
      .-= mountainmomma18´s last blog ..Long enough…. =-.

    23. I thought muskrat wrote “she didn’t choose Hooters.” I am a little upset that he/she didn’t choose to write Hooters instead of hookers.

      Little-known fact: in Canada, “puppies” means “hookers” but up here we call them “lorries.”
      .-= rachael´s last blog ..of course it is. =-.

    24. I have read your “Hi It’s Me” post about a dozen times since you posted it. And each time I wanted to comment, to express the gratitude and hope and pain that post filled me up with, and words failed me. I’m glad there are people like you and Rachael in the world who can get the words down right.

    25. That proposal story is only slightly creepier than old men pulling coins from behind little girls’ ears.

    26. That settles it, I’m moving to Dogland.

      But can we make it Australia, cos the US is so far away …

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