In today’s episode you’ll hear a letter about my dog, a note about solidarity to a good friend, and I ask for some legal advice.
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- Letter Talk is written and produced by me, and my sister Amy edits my writing. This episode features music from Kevin MacLeod.
Dear American Kennel Club,
I’m writing to you about something that’s been worrying me for a while and, as the authority on most dog related conflicts, I thought ya’ll would be the right folks to ask. I have a dog named AJ, whom I love very much, but I can’t seem to figure out where she is on my family tree. Basically speaking, am I AJ’s mom, or am I her friend?
There’s that phrase that refers to dogs as “man’s best friend” but I don’t know if that applies, because I’m not a man. I would say I’m a bro, but probably not a man. And don’t try to do that whole thing where you say, “Well the founders of the country meant all people when they wrote that into the Constitution and Declaration of Independence” because if “all men” meant “all people” in it, they most definitely winked or something when they wrote it. That was more about white men.
She might be my friend, because a lot of the time we just sit around and watch wrestling. Also, if I’ve had a really bad day, I cry into her back like she’s a big fluffy pillow. I think I could cry into a friend’s back like that, but none of my friends are fluffy or furry enough for it to be the same. Additionally, I don’t tell any of my friends not to eat rabbit shit, or they’re not allowed to lick their crotch while sitting on my couch. (They’re not, by the way. I’ve just never had to say something about it to anyone.)
But on the other hand, AJ does have a childlike vibe. I mean, I have to take care of her: feed her, make sure she poops, and take her to the doctor. That’s more than I’ve ever really done for any friend. Also, if I had a child, I probably wouldn’t cry into her back when I’m fighting a bout of existential dread.
My dad called her “Grandpup,” so I guess my family might feel like she has more of a kid vibe. But also, my dad ended up apologizing for calling her that on the phone. He said, “I hope you didn’t think that we’re expecting a grandkid out of you soon. I don’t want to put that pressure on you. We have so many nice family members in the Philippines, that we’ll be ok. We just thought the name was cute.”
I thought the name was cute, too. I didn’t think about it that way. And maybe my getting a dog was misleading in some way. Some couples get a dog to “train” for having a kid. Maybe my parents thought I was training to be a single mom. Really, it was the opposite. Part of why I got AJ, was that I finally got to a point in my life where I wanted to be really careful and not seriously date anyone unless I was sure about them. “Oh man, that’s going to get a little lonely,” I thought. I read in “He’s Just Not That into You” the phrase “If you want to snuggle, get a puppy.” It sounded about right.
But I digress. I’m never sure how to think of AJ in that sense, and it’s probably because I don’t treat her like a human friend, nor do I treat her like a human child. I try to treat her like a dog. Also, I’ll never call her a “fur baby,” like these fucking maniacs out there. I’ll never buy her clothes, or push her around in a stroller. I’ll probably never refer to myself as her “human,” because neither of us are concerned about the power dynamic between the two of us…or at least I’ve never seen her write about it in her journal.
Please let me know what proper American Kennel Club protocol is on this. If there’s nothing established, not a problem, I’ll reach out to Cesar Milan to set some sort of dog rule, as I know he is king of the dog people.
Keep barking on!
How are you? I am fine. Good. Wonderful. I wanted to write you a letter about a specific event I remember. We were both friends with your old roommate. I don’t want to name names, so we won’t call him a roommate, let’s call him a broomplate… Also, let’s just say his name is Katt, like Katt Williams, but in this letter I’ll call Katt Williams, Splat Brilliams.
I remember how disgusting Katt’s house was. It was like that before you got there. Just hookah dust covering everything. (This was the 2000s – before vaping became a thing. We actually knew a guy who smoked a hookah out of a purse he carried, and we made fun of him. Who knew he was just revolutionary? I just looked up that guy to see what he’s up to, but I couldn’t find him, so I imagine he got sucked into his hooka purse an it took him to a different dimension. If you know what happened to him, please let me know.)
Anyway, there was hookah dust covering everything. Soda cans everywhere. Never any trash bags lining the trash can. Really broomplate? No bag in the trash can, as famous comedian Splat Brilliams would say, “Fuck you.” It was just a big gross man cave to an extent that I have still never seen in my life.
This was the soda and Del Taco stained hellstorm you bravely ventured into, John. Many could not do what you did: live there for a considerable amount of time.
Your legend lives on, John. One fateful day you were eating a piece of bread with jelly. You held it daringly without a plate, and some jelly dripped onto the soda, ash, dirt and fart soaked carpet. Broomplate Katt confronted you about your transgression. You said you would clean it up later. Broomplate Katt got angry… He wanted you to clean it up now. You asked Broomplate Katt why it mattered, considering a jelly stain was nothing compared to all the other questionable stains in the house. Your cries were to no avail. Basically, Broomplate Katt decided to be a dick about it.
I wanted to write to you and let you know that I stand by you, my friend. Your cleaning that jelly immediately wasn’t going to change the composition of the house or the way it was treated. Also, I can attest that once Broomplate Katt saw a dog pee on the floor in his living room, and when I asked if he was going to clean it, he said no, and that it was the job of the other broomplate who was dog sitting. I said that you don’t just wait until your broomplate gets home so he can clean the dog pee, because it’s pee. So, I cleaned it up, and he. Was. Outraged.
John, I want to absolve you of any blame once and for all. I’m appealing to a higher power and asking for help, because you’re my friend and I don’t blame you for not giving a fuck about jelly on a floor that looks like a flattened version of that ball that picks up all the shit in Katamari Damashii.
Dear Joey Gilbert Law,
First of all, I know your name is only Joey Gilbert, so part of me expects for you to respond with “Please Joey Gilbert Law is my father’s name, just call me Joey Gilbert.”
Anyway Joey Gilbert, I’m writing to ask you to resolve a dispute… Really at this point this could be considered a cold case, but hey, it’s never too late to seek justice, am I right? Check yes or no about whether I’m right:
□ Yes □ No
The case I bring to you occurred in your current city of residence, Reno, Nevada. My friend John moved into a three bedroom house already occupied by two people: an unnamed unknown roommate, and another roommate we’ve been calling Broomplate Katt to protect his identity (Katt, like Katt Williams, but for the purposes of this letter we’ll call Splat Brilliams).
The house was normally disgusting and not well taken care of. Every surface was covered in Del Taco wrappers and hookah dust. The floor was filled with beer and fart stains.
One day John was holding some bread with jelly on it, and some jelly dripped. Broomplate Katt freaked out at John and told him he had to clean it up that instant. John pointed out that the house was normally disgusting, so why did it matter?
I would like to offer my testimony as a first hand witness. Once I was over at this apartment and a dog peed in the living room. I went to go clean it up, and Broomplate Katt told me not to because his unnamed unknown roommate was pet sitting that dog and it was his responsibility to clean the pee when he got home. I cleaned it up, because dog pee (or any pee for that matter) is not something you just “wait for your roommate to get home to clean.”
Please let me know if John was correct in it not being a big deal that the jelly dropped on the ground, because holy crap that house was a nightmare. They didn’t even use trash bags to line the trash can…also they had a gigantic outside sized trash can in the house.
As a bonus, let me know if it was ok for my other friend, who lived there at one time, to have sex on the couch because it was already gross? Because at that point, you have sex on that couch at your own risk. I’ve added checkboxes here:
I agree that John was correct, and that house was disgusting so who cares about jelly on the floor:
□ Yes □ No
I agree that the other friend was fine to have sex on the couch, but that he had sex there at his own risk:
□ Yes □ No
Thanks for your help, Joey! As always, I will look forward to the warm greetings on your posters at the Reno/Tahoe International Airport the next time I visit the Biggest Little City.
Cheers and Beers,