My friend Jeremy (Meddling with Nature) is full of awesome. He’s a taxidermist/artist/prop maker who works with roadkill/animals who died of natural causes and who sends me wonderful emails that include lines like “Today my biggest challenge is making a zombie dog that can vomit a gallon of fake blood.” He made me Rory (the ecstatic raccoon who is on the cover of FURIOUSLY HAPPY) and you’ll have to read the book to hear that story, but last month Jeremy was all “Hey, I made this goat and he’s been frequenting bars and parade floats. His name is Totes MaGoats” and I was like “Um, no. He is Totes MY Goat. Because that is my goat. Seriously. I need him. And I will christen him Vincent Van Goat so he can have two names.”
But then Victor was like “No. Just…what? No.” And I did agree that Totes MaGoats/Vincent Van Goat was a bit pricey but he’s also enormous and so pound-per-pound he was a steal. Victor disagreed because he doesn’t understand how buying-in-bulk works so I turned to my publisher with this email:
My friend Jeremy (the one who made Rory) just sent me a picture of his latest creation AND I NEED IT.
It’s a giant goat reading Alice in Wonderland but we could place a copy of FURIOUSLY HAPPY in his hand-hoof and then it’d be a taxidermied animal reading about a taxidermied animal. My head hurts from the awesome. Plus, you can take Vincent Van Goat to Book Conventions as a conversation piece and everyone would take a picture. INSTANT PUBLICITY. Then I’d buy it from you later (but at a big discount obviously because “used goat“) and then you won’t have to find a place to store a goat after the tour ends. EVERYONE WINS.
Long story short, will you buy me this goat? Does it help if I mention that I’m a Capricorn and that this is The Year of the Goat? If you don’t want to fund the goat I’ll probably still buy it myself but I’m gonna need you to buy him a seat on the airplane when I go on tour because I think I just found my new service animal. Also, Victor thinks the goat is ridiculous but he also just said that the goat would look good with a jeweled ascot and a pipe so I think he’s warming up to it. Which is good because it’s going in the bedroom.
Then my publisher was like “Who is this?” and so I decided to just buy the goat for myself.
(Really my publisher said “We love you but this is gonna look weird on an expense report. So, maybe?” and I was like “I CANNOT WAIT FOR YOUR SLOW DECISIONS. SOMEONE ELSE IS GOING TO SNATCH THIS MAGICAL GOAT UP” and that’s why I had to buy it immediately.)
Last week Jeremy drove Totes to my house from Cincinnati and it was awesome because it was lovely to have someone look at my weird taxidermy with appreciation rather than frightened judgement, and also because it’s hard to even get pizza delivered at my house, much less a full sized goat.
Then Ferris Mewler snuggled up with Jeremy and when we pointed out that Ferris is polydactyl (a cat born with opposable thumbs). Jeremy was like “Whoa. I’d super like to see your skeleton, buddy,” and then Victor was like “Oh dear God, there are two of you.”
Jeremy explained that Totes still had a lot of lanolin in his hair so when I braid and style him it’ll be really healthy for my nails and cuticles – as if I needed another reason to love this goat. Also, lanolin is really great for irritated nipples so I decided to put Totes in the guest room so that if someone is breast-feeding in that room he can serve as a medicinal goat.
It’s nice because that room really needed something and turns out what it needed was a goat. Upside? I think I might be able to go into interior design if this whole writing thing turns to shit.