My Poodle Puppy

By: Ann Brown

I am so fucking sleep-deprived.

I swear to God, I almost gave that puppy a hundred dollar bill this morning just so she’d sleep until 6. The only thing that stopped me is that I was so fucking tired I took a twenty out of my wallet instead of a hundred. And Phila – being a Poodle – just laughed disdainfully at it. And resumed chewing on the drawstring of my pajama shorts. Which pulled the shorts super tight on me. Which is Phila’s way of telling me to lay off the snacks because, as you know from that bestselling book, French Poodles don’t snack.

You know what? I kinda hate Phila. Poodles are so judgmental.

All my other dogs have been rescue mutts. Grateful. Low self-esteem. Insecure. I was like a god to them. Phila knows that she could have done better than winding up in a 1970’s split-level in suburban Oregon.

Yeah, Phila, tell me about it. That line forms behind ME.

I like to tell people that although she is a Poodle, we are going to raise her as a German Shepherd. But I’ve been thinking…French Poodle and German Shepherd is a lot of anti-Semitism in one dog. You take your run-of-the-mill French anti-Semitism and then you add German strategic anti-Semitism and you know what you’ve got? One scary puppy, that’s what. She’ll degrade your cuisine at dinner AND turn you in to the Nazis the next morning.

We got a Poodle because a lot of the kids we have and love are allergic to dogs and, contrary to what one of our kids may mutter under his breath, we do love our children more than we love our rescue mutts. Although – and I’m just saying – none of my rescue mutts ever totaled my Volvo or roll their eyes in disgust when I do Tae Bo in my underwear in the den.

I bet Phila will totally judge me in my ratty Lollipop underwear. Guess I better go to La Perla and get some decent bras with good uplift. Damn Poodle. You know what? Let’s take a look at Phila’s nipples in 58 years. Then we’ll see who has the last laugh.

Also? She is completely disinterested in the people food I cook. My old rescue mutts would practically throw me a parade when I boiled some chicken in water and let them eat the innards. They thought I was an amazing cook, able to provide for them such gastronomic wonders as old avocado on stale bread heels and hard-as-a-brick banana bread straight from the freezer. Phila, on the other hand, doesn’t even pay attention to the food that falls to the floor while we are eating. She just sits there and shakes her head with disgust like she’s one of the judges on CHOPPED. I think she is coming to grips with the fact that her Purina – domestic! – puppy kibble is, in fact, what she’s gonna be eating and is not – as she hoped – merely an ironic amuse bouche. Purina! Quel droll!

Wait until she finds out we drink Oregon wine.

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