For our best baby girl

India Friday Likins, 01/24/2006 – 03/08/2022

I grew up allergic to fur and feathers, which meant “no dogs allowed,” even though I desperately wanted one. Therefore, I consider it a minor miracle that one day I happened to stop at a craft store in Burlington, which was both having a major sale and had a resident pomeranian. I immediately discovered lots of small shiny things to buy, but it wasn’t until I’d already been sitting-on-the-carpeted-floor-digging-through-bins for at least an hour that the pom wandered out.

I admit that I panic’d and thought I’d probably stop breathing shortly, but much to my surprise, I didn’t. And so I decided to test my luck a little and stay longer (also, there was about half the stuff I hadn’t gone through yet).

A couple hours later, I’d petted the pom, and even let him lick my wrist, and will admit that I was a little sneezy, but nothing like what I’d have expected for having interacted with a real, live dog. (Especially considering I spent most of the time sitting on a carpeted floor, digging through *very* dusty bins of buttons and bits.)

A hope blossomed, so I started researching and found a wonderful pomeranian breeder with a great reputation (who is now focusing on grandkids not puppies) who was kind enough to let me come bury my nose in her newest litter of puppies. So I met a bunch of bebehs…

…and I fell in love with this one.  On the 16th of March, I brought her home, naming her India (because she was black like India ink) Friday (because of the Steely Dan song, Black Friday).  

And she’s been the Very Best Pupper – when I met Adrian, she fell in love with him just like I had… she did all her best tricks for him, and she’d follow him anywhere.

He helped her perfect her “monkey hold”:

She’s been so patient, despite all the costumes we (ok, mostly I) dressed her in:

And the ridiculous situations that we (again, mostly I) put her in:

And the bad (and some not-so-bad) haircuts by yours truly

She even tolerated her rambunctious (and probably a little annoying) younger brother, Roman, when he joined us in 2015:

But even the best little girl can’t live forever (though 16 1/4 is very old for a pup), and the past week has brought changes of the not-good sort that made it clear to us that she wasn’t happy any more. So agreed that it was time to say goodbye and “send her off to college” (kind framing thanks to my friend K).

Adrian and I both agree that was the only loving and responsible choice, and we have no regrets about making the decision.

But our hearts are still breaking because our baby girl is gone.

Here are a few more favorite pics of her.

Many more pictures of India and Roman are here and here


a splendid birthday…

…is comprised of:

  • the guy at Starbucks saying “That’s not you!” upon seeing the picture on your credit card, and upon being told that it, in fact, was me, only *20* years ago (in college) saying “WOW. You look much better now!”. And giving me a free mocha.
  • a delicious lunch out with new work colleagues at Sandwich in Chapel Hill (a restaurant I’ve been meaning to try forever) — grilled cheese with shaved beef and prune preserves — yum!
  • a delivery to my office of my favorite flowers (gerber daisies and roses) that were sent by aklikins
  • bonus mid-afternoon birthday cookies from work folks
  • cards and presents (from dtnorman and Adrian’s parents and sister and my aunt and uncle) in the mail (one of the presents from my Dad was a tiny remote-controlled Mini Cooper… as it turns out, I don’t have a puppy after all, I have a cat!! You should have seen her trying to catch it and batting it around!)
  • dinner out with aklikins at Rue Cler — more yummy!
  • presents from aklikins — including a new laptop with a touchscreen that is *neato* (and I just want to play with it now!!). And a remote-controlled WALL*E (who falls over rather drunkenly a lot, which is funny) !! And lots of other really swell stuff!!



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Puppy love

Does anyone know of someone who will either (a) come stay in my house while I’m away to take care of India or (b) board her in a non-caged setting (she can be baby-gated in a room, but her “Granny”, a.k.a. my mom, has put the kibosh on kenneling her in a standard kennel).  This does *not* have to be an official boarding service…someone who does it on the side would be great.

She’s “piddle pad” trained (though I would keep her on a tiled area if you’re away) and isn’t difficult, really.  Very affectionate little beastie, too.

The immediate need is from this Friday afternoon (10/5) to this Sunday (10/7) and the weekend after (10/12-10/14), but I also would like to know someone for future aways…

Stories & truths

There are a lot of things that I say about myself that — in my head, over a long, long span of time — have become somewhat apocryphal.  The allergies thing was a good example of that … I’d spent so long telling people that I had atrocious allergies that I’d started to believe I was exaggerating.  Going back to the allergist and hearing him say that I really do have some of the worst allergies he’s seen reminded me that things I’ve said about my allergies were’t exaggerated for the point of good story-telling (not that I don’t do that too), but were, in fact, grounded in reality.  (Oh, the shock).

I had another one of those things happen last night.  I tell people I have a distinctive laugh (in fact, I think it’s been part of my personals ads), but again, over time I’d come to think of that as an overstatement … based on comments people had made, sure, but not necessarily “reality.”

There do exist some old recordings of shows (in very tiny venues) where there’s lots of back and forth banter and audience participation and whatnot and you *can* hear my laugh in those.  But in the past several years I’d written that off as bad data, in that the people who were telling me this were good friends who, of course, would recognize my laugh… I could recognize theirs in the same sessions, so no biggie, right?

One of those shows was by Tim Easton, perhaps my most favorite singer/songerwriter ever.  I had a chance to go see him last night (for the first time in three years, probably?), and I was surprised, amazed and pleased as punch when, post-show, Tim came out to talk to folks, spotted me, smiled and said:  “There you are!  I could hear you laugh and was so glad you were here!”