Are Your Dogs on a Leash?


Many years ago, I had two dogs. While standing outside my own home with the dogs on a leash, I had this conversation with a lady and her husband who were approaching with their own dog on a leash.

Lady: (Coming around the corner about 50 feet away) Are your dogs on a leash?
Me: Of course, it’s the law.
Lady: Oh, well I didn’t know, I couldn’t see.
Me: (no reaction – just look at lady)
Lady: Well you don’t have to be smart about it!
Me: (confused look at lady)

Images from the public domain



Dear Santa – 2015

I wanted to share this letter with all of my readers that I sent to Kris Kringle, aka Santa Clause.

You better not pout! You better not cry! Shit...

You better not pout!
You better not cry!

Dear Santa,

I hope this finds you well. I have been a very good young man this past year. (ahem, why are you laughing – I am still VERY young) Because I was so good, I wanted to kindly ask for a few things for Christmas. If you could oblige me, I would be eternally grateful. I will itemize them for your consideration.

1.I need a fresh start in life Santa. I had some really bad things happen to me and I made some mistakes in life. But, I have grown and spent the last three to four years cleaning up my mess. I feel like I am ready to take the next step forward in my life. I’d like to start over in a new area and begin from square one.

2. I’d like to have my own home again. I really miss my first home that I gave up in the divorce. I took very good care of it. I always did. I loved working in the yard. I had earned it and it was mine to call home. I’d love that again.


My first home.


3. I’d like a first generation Mustang. I’d really love a black 1968 Ford Mustang Fastback. It would be great if I could get the 302 cubic inch engine (you know, the 4.9L one) with the 4 barrel carburetor. That would be really awesome. I’d take really good care of it. You know I would. Oh, and I need a a place to put it. Maybe, like, a garage? (Please see item number 2!) I took such great care of my beloved Mazda 626. Look how great it looked on the day I sold it and it was 13 years old!

My beloved Mazda 626 I had from 2000 - 2013.

My beloved Mazda 626 I had from 2000 – 2013.

Though it is three items, I know I am asking for a lot. If I can only have one thing, I’d like item number one please. It would mean a lot to me.

I don’t have a chimney so I assume you will use the front door. (I only have one door but it is still the front, I guess) Anyways, I will leave you some cookies but I can’t leave any milk. For one, I have a cat and she will get into it. She gets into everything. Two, let’s cut to the chase here – we are all adults and you will be tired as going around the world in one night is tough. And I am sure Ms. Clause will be blowing up your phone wanting to know why you weren’t home at a certain time and if you are out drinking with the elves, blah, blah, blah. So, I will be a pal and leave you some bourbon. The cat doesn’t like bourbon. Oh, how do I know? Well, um, things got crazy one night..and well, never mind, it isn’t important. Anyways, I will leave you some good stuff too – some Knob Creek, Woodford Reserve, or Bowman Brothers and with some whiskey stones to keep it cold and not watered down.

Um, Santa?

Um, Santa?

Also, please keep the front door closed cause the cat will run out. She is a sneaky little shit very sweet little girl and it is tough to catch her. I had to chase her outside one day and it was a challenge. And with the reindeer, and it will be cold, and you might spill the bourbon I leave, I mean, it just sounds bad – really bad. So, just please close the door. Trust me on this. Plus, if you make too much noise I will wake up and then I’ll be mad that you didn’t listen to me and the cat got out. Well, when I see the Mustang, I will be happy, but I will still be agitated you didn’t listen to me. Plus, we will still have to go find the cat. Let’s just avoid all of that, okay? Awesome!

Santa, keep an eye out for Dandelion!

Santa, keep an eye out for Dandelion!

Well, Merry Christmas and thanks again for taking the time to read my letter!



P.S. Here is a picture of me with my friend from Christmas 1983 when we met you!

Jarrod and Kelly

Crying Santa and Kids Image

Drunk Santa

All other images from my personal collection.

Thank You

*I posted this on Facebook and wanted to share with all of you – my blogging friends – because it is intended for you as well.

To all,

I wanted to thank everyone who “liked,” commented on a post, emailed, or texted me with encouragement on the passing of my cat Chyna. All gestures, whether big or small, were appreciated and have helped me navigate this difficult situation.

As many of you may be aware to some degree, the last five years of my life have been filled with extreme changes, immense sadness and sorrow, and very turbulent times with many tribulations. There have been many wonderful people that helped me (too many to list – but you know who you are) but the one constant in my life during these times was Chyna. She was always there providing unconditional love, never judging, even in times that I wasn’t at my best and didn’t have the proper tools. Her little beautiful heart offered encouragement that there were still good in this world among all the chaos I felt, and even in times that I felt I didn’t want to live anymore nor did I have any reason to live anymore. She always reminded me that there was someone who loved me and needed me.

Her health failed so quickly – basically in the last three weeks. It is still shocking to me that it was so quick. Her behavior started to change and when I took her in a week ago from last Friday I got the news that, unfortunately, her kidneys and liver were failing. I could never have imagined we would only have a week together but each day things got worse. I struggled with this decision because I felt like if done too soon, then I was turning my back on her, and if too late, she was suffering. It became apparent to me on Wednesday, after she wet herself and laid in it, that the time was right. No one, or animal, should ever have to be subjected to that. Over the last few days, I spent many hours with her petting her, comforting her, and giving her fresh towels to lay on. Though she wanted to spend much of her time alone, our interactions still caused her to purr which brought me great joy. Even her last night, after wetting herself, I picked her up to clean her and she still found the energy to meow and fight me as I cleaned her. She always hated to be picked up and it actually made me smile that she stayed true to herself to the end.

The staff at the clinic was very good and allowed me all the time I needed. I spent some time with her before and comforted her and held her for 15 minutes after she had passed, joking that it was the first time in 17 years she had let me hold her. It was the best experience for such a negative situation.

I’ve cried more in the last four days than I have in the last 25 years including over my divorce and the ending of my relationship with my Mother. My heart hurts knowing Chyna is gone but I knew she was suffering and had no quality of life. I truly wish I could subtract some years off of my life and give them to her so we had more time together.

Though I don’t need anyone’s validation, I do hope it helps some people to understand why this has been such a difficult situation for me.

And specifically to my blogging friends, I want to extend a special thank you. It is truly amazing how cruel, thoughtless, and uncaring people in our “real lives” can be. Meanwhile, people on the internet, that I have never met in person, but am proud to call real friends, can be so kind, caring, and thoughtful. I have never met any of you people in person but all of you were so quick to offer kind words, thoughts, and encouragement. Many of you emailed me as well. I just wanted to let you know how much it meant to me – how much this community means to me – that all of you care so much for a perceived “stranger” in his time of need. Please know that reading a simple blog post and “liking it,” and/or commenting with a kind word – which likely took you a total of 2-3 minutes made an an immense impact in my life. Thank you again, friends – not internet friends – but friends.

Chyna's Locket of Hair

Chyna’s Locket of Hair

Chyna's Paw Prints

Chyna’s Paw Prints