About Abby, Lydia and Matilda
Four dogs, two horses, three rabbits, and various cats dropping in and out were predominantly responsible for us as a family to be prisoners in our own home. Sure, I occasionally was entertained by their silly antics, but mainly viewed them as a barrier preventing freedom and frivolity. I stayed firm to that belief for many years, until one day the clouds cleared and it came to me- something was missing. I couldn’t pinpoint it. What did I need? A female? Nope, had one of those. Maybe another? Absolutely not! I wanted…companionship. Yes, so I scoured the Internet looking for examples of companionship (word to the wise, be careful what you click on). Anyway, I found the market research all pointed to a dog. A dog. One of the main encumbrances from my youth that had prevented my family from traveling to LA where I would’ve been scouted as the fresh new Midwestern look they needed for the The Bionic Boy pilot. And now, like Pavlov’s dog, the conditioning that occurred while I was young had me yearning. Yes, yearning.
My parents’ last trick on me. They toyed with my mind and memories so much by having these creatures hanging around that I now, 30 years later after going over the wall to freedom, was intentionally seeking to share my existence with a dog. Then I wanted two dogs. No, I NEEDED two dogs. And I got two dogs. And now, somehow these spoiled rotten furry freeloaders have gotten into my head questioning and wondering what the fuck I did for 30 years and how did I put up with myself for that long. These days, my attitude for the day is determined early in the morning. First, on a morning walk with one dog, I need three healthy cigar-shaped turds. Second, I need the other dog, without major prodding or Broadway production, to eat her breakfast. When I get that parlay to come in, I feel like a hundred bucks. When only one or less of these bets comes in, a very large ominous cloud system hovers above me. I’m preoccupied all day with “Why didn’t she poop this morning? How come she won’t eat?” And my face apparently reflects these less than existential thoughts with a more anti-social face than usual.
It began with Laurie Partridge, then Farrah Fawcett-Majors, Suzanne Somers, followed by, at a rapid increasingly rate, any new “actress” showing up on the ABC Fall lineup. During all those infatuations over the fairer sex, never once did I imagine my heart would be enveloped by two four-legged hairy girls that had been unceremoniously dumped in previous relationships. They’re insidious. They work their way into your most fundamental core and make you wonder how you ever survived without them. I think it’s the stability they bring. Never let me get too high and never let me get too low. And no matter what they are always able to communicate, without words, they’re happy I exist, which isn’t a given with my wife.
Abby joined the family and immediately made her mark, which is now celebrated each year as Escape Day. Lydia came along for the ride a couple years later with such little knowledge of anything it resembled a complete memory wipe from campy shows of the 70’s. Matilda showed up recently and, as younger children in a family know, there is less evidence of her existence as all of our energy went into filming and taking pictures of the older two.
For my entire adult life I had enjoyed being in charge of MY time and had no interest in following someone else’s clock…or so it seemed. Currently, my work titles include walking companion, cook, servant, brusher, massager, and patron. And I don’t see myself quitting any of those jobs for a long while.
My Hairy Daughters
11 Years Old
10 Years Old
3 Years Old