Talk to the Paw.

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This is Frances.  This is Ollie.  This is Max.  I say they are my dogs.  But in fact, I think, more to the point, I am their human.

I don’t own them.  They don’t own me.  We are….well…… we ARE  family.  Sure, you may not feel this way about your dog, or your cat, and that is okay.

And please, don’t get me wrong.  I love my family.  I have the best partner in the world, and just this evening, we had dinner with two of my beautiful sisters.

Yet tonight, I just wish to talk about the family with fur.  Although… one of my sisters is pretty hairy, this is about the dogs.

Yes…. these four-legged-people-in-dog-suits…. have touched my life.  Like you can’t imagine.  They have laughed and cried with me.  They’ve shared surprise, and fear, and understanding with me.

There have been times in my life where I have been pretty low about this or that.  Times when I don’t feel like being around anyone… barely even myself.  It is about at that moment, that one of them will approach slowly…but surely…and drop their head right on your knee.  Those big eyes rise to the occasion and meet yours.  And suddenly, you feel like the world might right itself again, and start spinning on its proper axis.

They’ll take a long walk with you, and be as quiet as you want, or as loud and rowdy as you are.  They chase their tales… just to show you that they can be agility clowns.  They eat voraciously… because they love the food.  They guide, and protect, and comfort.

They’ll forgive you when you’ve been at your worst.  They’ll jump for joy when you win the dart game.

I could go on and on.  But the bottom line is this.  If that doesn’t spell family, I am not sure what does.

With all things in life, there are the highs and the lows, the goods and the bads.  These three dogs have way more pluses, than negatives, in the “keeping score” column.

Not that they would ever keep score on me.  They love me… without condition or constraint.  Bless their little furry hearts.

I am grateful to have Maxine and Frances and Ollie in my life.  I swear to dog.


You are the sum total of everything you’ve ever seen, heard, eaten, smelled, been told, forgot – it’s all there. Everything influences each of us, and because of that I try to make sure that my experiences are positive.
— Maya Angelou

I do believe we’re all connected. I do believe in positive energy. I do believe in the power of prayer. I do believe in putting good out into the world. And I believe in taking care of each other.
— Harvey Fierstein