Thursday, October 25, 2012


Beggars Choosing Beggars

My husband and I are dog lovers but we didn’t have any when we first had kids. Then our children started asking for a dog. My husband admitted he’s enjoyed not dealing with vet bills, poop-scooping, and fleas. Eventually I wore him down, and we spent months researching the right breed. I was unable to go and choose the puppy, so my husband made the final decision. I hate this dog.

Uh-oh. What say ye, Prudie? Also, how many boxes of stuff from our childhood should we keep in someone else's attic?

90 Comments / Post A Comment

Reginal T. Squirge

My parents once mailed me a box of old schoolwork and other junk from my childhood (pictures, etc.). It went straight to the dumpster. Burn the past, as fast as you can.


@Reginal T. Squirge I always feel bad that I don't want to keep anything old! I didn't even keep my high school yearbook. but I live in the NOW!!!

Reginal T. Squirge

Nostalgia is a sucker's game.


@iceberg I've never had a hard time letting go of any yearbook, but the "most treasured possessions" of early childhood have always stayed my hand. Something about the physical representation of a parents' love, y'know, the real bullshit stuff.

Beatrix Kiddo

@Reginal T. Squirge I like pictures if they all fit in ONE album, but everything else should go straight into the trash.

fondue with cheddar

@Reginal T. Squirge It's cool that they gave you the chance to keep or toss instead of throwing away something you might have wanted.


@Reginal T. Squirge I'm an awful slave to the past! I have this crate filled with my teenage diaries and I can't get rid of them, even though the thought of anybody I know reading them fills me with dread.


@Reginal T. Squirge - I cannot comprehend this. I get mad when my boyfriend throws out old pictures of ex girlfriends because that was part of his LIFE how can you just THROW YOUR LIFE AWAY

fondue with cheddar

@KeLynn If I don't keep stuff from my past I worry that I will forget it. My past is who I am!

My boyfriend and I recently had a grand old time going through each others' yearbooks, sharing anecdotes and pointing out all the people we crushed on/kissed/dated/banged.

Reginal T. Squirge

It's not my life any longer.

Reginal T. Squirge


"If I don't keep stuff from my past I worry that I will forget it."

That's the point.


@Reginal T. Squirge I have a box full of doodles, notes, and other assorted memorabilia from my best friend during our high-school years. She died last year, and I look at bits of it once in a while and remember this day or that class--I'd never lose the way I felt about her if I got rid of the box, but at the same time losing that cache of stored memories that are only brought out with the papers is unfathomable to me.

fondue with cheddar

@Reginal T. Squirge See, I don't want to forget anything from my past, even the bad stuff.


You are most welcome.@k


For my 30th Bday this spring, my ma gave me a "Memory Box". It had a copy of my footprints from the hospital, my first onesie (no longer fits, unfortunately. It is a lovely shade of blue), a bunch of little papers from school growing up, some pictures I drew, a few elementary school report cards, and assorted tchotchkes and knick-knackery. It's about fourteen by ten, six inches deep - It's the perfect size / amount of stuff.

I'd recommend all parents just start a thing like that when they have a kid, and fill it right away. Then, every time you want to add a new thing to it, throw out other shit to make it fit in the memory box.

When your kid turns 30, take them out to a nice dinner, and give them the box, a good bottle of a single malt scotch, and a quality leatherbound book. Your job as a parent is done, now you can just grow old and make them take care of your drool and constant television volume complaints.

Disco Sheets

@leon s This is the cutest ever.


@leon s This reminds me of a memory/milestone calendar my Mom made for me after I was born. She bought a 12 month wall calendar, just regular size, and then every day for the first year of my life she wrote little anecdotes on every day of the year. As a result, I know the exact days I first hiccuped and said "Dada", that I didn't like to feed after she drank orange juice, that I used to try to eat all insects but especially beetles, and more. These things are all the more precious to me because she passed away when I was 10, and I didn't find the calendar until I was 19. It was like having her in the same room with me again, after a 10 year absence. Very few moments in my life compare.

So yes, parents, do these things! They could mean more to your child than you can ever imagine, or be there to see.


@Gussie Fink-Nottle @leon s

You're killing me, the two of you. This is beautiful.


I hate this dog. It has never once rescued Timmy from the well, into which our son inconceivably perambulates on at least a monthly basis.

This dog has never detected an earthquake, and I don't regard the fact that we live in Phoenix an extenuating factor.

This cussed mongrel has the temerity to lick my face. My face!

The dog produces waste from its bowels and diligently avoids any sort of flushable receptacle. You'd honestly think it was raised by wolves.

The dog does not regurgitate diamonds or any other sort of precious gems.

The dog has not granted me inner or outer peace.

My husband appears very keen on spending more time with the dog than me, and once I think I even heard him say something about it being less needy. That dog has a bit of the witch in it.

I hate this dog.

evil melis

"We voted, and there was only one negative ballot - Dad's. Mother abstained. In after years, as the collie grew older, shed hair on the furniture, bit the mailman, and did in fact try to appropriate the foot of Dad's bed, the chairman was heard to remark on occasion to the assistant chairman:

'I give nightly praise to my Maker that I never cast a ballot to bring that lazy, disreputable, ill-tempered beast into what was once my home. I'm glad I had the courage to go on record as opposing that illegitimate, shameless flea-bag that now shares my bed and board. You abstainer, you!'"


@evil melis it took me a minute to place it, but thank you for reminding me of this gem. Frank Bunker Gilbreth, Sr. FTW!


@beanie Right? I love that family, and they're the reason I'm obsessed with motion and efficiency!


@evil melis AWWWWW! I was in that play when I was little (Martha... third daughter?) I STILL use the Chairman's soaping technique in the bath!

evil melis

CHEAPER BY THE DOZEN, guys. My dad used to read that to my sister and me and it kiiiiiiiiiiills me to this day. "Someone once asked Dad: 'But what do you want to save time for? What are you going to do with it?'
'For work, if you love that best,' said Dad. 'For education, for beauty, for art, for pleasure.' He looked over the top of his pince-nez. 'For mumblety-peg, if that’s where your heart lies.'"

evil melis

Motorcycle Max and all the beaux! "Throw him back," Dad roared. "He's too small to keep." Losing Frank in the red-light district! "No," Dad said, blushing red. "I'm looking for a naughty little boy." "Whoops," the lady exclaimed. "Excuse me, dearie."


@evil melis The beaux were totally the best part. (Now the "All My Fondest Thoughts" song is stuck in my head! With the tune I assumed it had when I was eight I guess.)

evil melis



In my family it's my mother who refuses to give up things from my sibling's and my childhoods. A few years ago all four of us kids spent hours going through the children's books at my parents' picking out the ones that had meaning to us. Afterwards, my mom went through our "rejects" pile and reclaimed most of them, even the ones that we all hated when we were little. She's convinced she needs them all for the herds of grandkids she'll have one day (not likely).


@MilesofMountains Do we have the same Mom? Mine won't even throw away the old books that got water damage when the basement flooded. Every time one of us comes to visit she buys a big plastic storage box and points to a pile and tells us to save the things we want - this has led to a lot of half-filled storage boxes laying around.


@MilesofMountains OH MY GOSHHHHHH my whole entire family including my mom and brother never throw or give anything away and it drives me nuts. I have a couple of small boxes full of important pictures and childhood journals and other small important to me knick knacky things, and I think that's more than enough. My mom has shit in boxes from her childhood living in the garage that she hasn't seen since she moved into our house ten years ago.

Oh, squiggles

She hates a dog that sounds like he is still a puppy. Wish she had done some research into the difference between and adult dog and a puppy as well as looking at different breeds!


@Absurd Bird I suspect that she also hates her husband a little? HE'S the one that picked the dog; she would have picked a much better dog, that bonded with HER. Maybe not hate - maybe just a little bit of slow, bitter, simmering resentment which has fixed itself upon the dog.


@aphrabean "I thought I would pick out a dog that I bonded with, but didn't actually go to pick out a dog. Damn HIM for not picking a dog that bonded with me!"


@bitzy I think if she really wanted to bond with the dog she would! Like, take it to some obedience classes by yourself (if it's old enough that is). You get to spend time with your dog, teaching it some important disciplinary rules and you also get to learn how to teach! (Surprisingly, not everyone is born with innate dog-teaching skills.)


@permanentbitchface If you've always had "easy" dogs, or dogs that seemed easy perhaps because you didn't have the primary responsibility for training them, then it can be quite a shock to the system to get a dog who requires a lot more out of you.

Dogs *are* like children, in that they are all different, and the techniques that work well for one may not work well for another. You can't force a dog to change its personality. Some will be higher energy, smarter, more stubborn, more affectionate, etc. than others.

BUT it is absolutely possible, unless your dog has some kind of medical condition, to at least train it to a basic level of obedience to the point where they aren't messing inside the house or harming people or property.


@SarahDances You're absolutely right! I just have always had lots of dogs around from my childhood (my mom was a breeder) so I guess the adapting is going to be a little different for me, and it might be a more difficult for other people. I have always had high energy, easily trainable, and excitable dogs of the same breed in my life forever, so I might have trouble with a more chill dog, which is what my boyfriend wants. Dogs! So different.

I am coming down a little harsh on the LW though because she said she "hates it." And that is a pretty awful thing to feel towards any dog. I would maybe hate a dog if it killed something or whatever, but from the sounds of her letter she just hates that it's being a puppy and being kind of difficult. This happens all the time with dogs; people don't know what they're getting into and just give up when it's tough. "Oh I just didn't have a BOND with it, cause I didn't pick it out myself!"


@permanentbitchface I've hated dogs before. Like my sister's Boston terrier. Truly, this dog is a nightmare. No redeeming qualities. To be fair, though, he isn't my dog. Thank God. I always feel bad when I hate people's dogs. But sometimes they are just horrible people (the dogs, not their owners). It happens.


Can we talk about the germophobe sister-in-law in the 2nd letter? May have to co-opt her strategy at keeping out unwanted guests. (Jk, but seriously, she sounds like she has problems that unfortunately will affect her kid.)


@charlesbois I just came here to comment on how sad that letter made me! I can't blame Amy, because she has a mental illness and is, even though it's not working, seeking help for it. But that little boy is growing up in an environment that is going to cause him issues, and it sounds like the dad isn't doing much about it. Plus, how awful that the family can't be together because the poor woman who write the letter has kids that Amy is terrified of letting near her and her son.


@charlesbois Yeah, the brother/husband needs to do...something. You can't entertain a person's fears when they are now bleeding onto the child's life. I feel so terrible for the kid! Not only will he probably never go outside or see relatives/friends, his immune system? is gonna suuuck.


The dog lady sounds a little wacky-why wasn't she there to pick out the dog? Of course her husband is irritated she doesn't like it-she sounds like she campaigned for one for a long time.

Basically, this dog sounds like it's still in it's puppy phase, and this lady sounds terrible.


@beanie Ugh yes she really does. I'm very "dogs are part of the family" and I really hate it when people do the whole, ugh well I don't really like it, it wasn't everything I hoped it would be and it's not a perfect little angel.. maybe we should give it a new home. NOPE. This dog is like your kid now, you don't get to get rid of it because it's not perfect. How about going to some obedience classes with it? Yeesh.

evil melis

"The dog is like your kid now." OH LET'S QUIBBLE.


@evil melis We can quibble! "like" your kid is what I said, and I stand by that! It's not a child, no, but it's a huge responsibility that needs to be premeditated and you can't just say, "well, this is hard. Fuck this!" and give up. I know some people feel differently about pets but that's how I roll!

I'm Right on Top of that, Rose

OK, you can crucify me, but my dog is very much in puppy phase (13 weeks old) and I strongly dislike him sometimes, like when he's hanging on to my pant leg with his teeth. But I understand he's basically an infant and doesn't know he's actively driving me insane.


@I'm Right on Top of that, Rose There were plenty of times when my dog was a puppy when I wanted to fling her out the window, especially after accidents and while her teeth were embedded in my arm.

But you take a deep breath, and you don't fling them out the window, and you keep training, and they grow up and out of the puppy phase and they are awesome.

sudden but inevitable betrayal

@I'm Right on Top of that, Rose Puppies are only fun if they are not yours and do not live with you. I wish you strength in this maddening period...hopefully he grows up into a neat dog.

George Templeton Strong

@I'm Right on Top of that, Rose Until you go through the horror of raising a puppy you can't know how much work it can be. You want to get a dog? Fine. But your first can't be a puppy. Our THIRD dog was a puppy and I wanted to throw her out the window every day for the first three months that we had her. But she soon became one of my best friends and my loyal sidekick. Luckily she has now attained an advanced age and my nickname for her is "Cousin Violet, the Dowager Countess of Templeton Strong Abbey," given her propensity to ignore/sneer at other dogs and be on her way. Plus I put her in a swivel chair once and she wasn't amused. She also barks when my cellphone rings so I don't think she likes that either.

I'm Right on Top of that, Rose

You know, he's just so adorable that it's hard to stay mad at him. And he doesn't shed. I just want him to stop being a sociopath right now, but I think he'll grow out of it. Like toddlers do. It is fun to watch him encounter snow for the first time as well.


@I'm Right on Top of that, Rose My puppy is 15 weeks, and I threaten to punch her in the adorable little face at least once a day. Seeing all the other awfully-behaved dogs in puppy kindergarten has helped me gain perspective, though - raising a pup is tough stuff!


@I'm Right on Top of that, Rose YES. The sociopath stage. No one tells you about that when you get a puppy, but seriously, they're little monsters for a few weeks. Mine drove me to tears because she just would not stop nipping, and I thought I'd a horrible, horrible mistake.

It gets better. Mine is nine months old now and is still gets the crazy eyes ever now and then, but most of the time she's affectionate, eager to please, and generally aware of her place in the world and what is and is not appropriate. They do grow out of it, and I've found it so fascinating to watch as she gains a bit more self awareness and maturity before my very eyes sometimes. Hang in there!

George Templeton Strong

@I'm Right on Top of that, Rose Where are you that it's snowing now? In the 1990s one year we had some massive snowfalls here in Manhattan, every three days for a stretch, and I'd clomp along with my little terrier (not the dog I have now; we got the terrier as a 3-year-old from yes, a shelter) and she would dive into the snowbanks and I'd have to pull her out by her harness. She also had a canine boyfriend and during one of the storms she tried to build a little snow cave for herself and him, a little male Westie. Dogs are the best.

I'm Right on Top of that, Rose

@meatcute CRAZY EYES. I hate it when those creep onto his face and he won't. stop. nipping. me.

@George Templeton Strong I'm out West, where the women are wild and the dogs are unruly.


@I'm Right on Top of that, Rose I accidentally adopted a 70 pound puppy (probably about 9 months old when we got him, is our best guess) and the first few months were the WORST. I cried a lot, and called him a penis-face, and he tore almost every single item of winter clothing I owned, but now he is a sweet angel darling (a year later) and I do not regret it. But I'll probably never ever get a puppy again. The crazy eyes are the WORST. Also, be ready for adolescent tantrums. It gets really bad, but then - it just goes away. Hold onto that thought.


@I'm Right on Top of that, Rose My puppies were always raised by older dogs who were much better than I am at telling them "you're insane and bad and stop it right now." And the puppies would LISTEN to them. Much more so than to me. Having another dog raise your dog helps a LOT through the "I want to kill this little adorable little thing who just ate my favorite pair of shoes" stage.

We're about to get another puppy, and we've told our four-year-old that she'll be in charge. She was raised right by her sister, so I have faith.


@piekin I always told my dog that it was a good thing he was so cute, because otherwise I'd sell him for parts.

I'm Right on Top of that, Rose

@anachronistique Yep. I'm always telling my partner that the puppy is still alive only because he's cute.


@I'm Right on Top of that, Rose I firmly believe that if puppies were not so adorable, dogs would be extinct. Because puppies are horrible little monsters (I say, while cuddling with my now 5-year-old Aussie who was exhausting for her first year, but I would never give up)


Props for Samuel Pepys reference, Prudie! My fave line is when his dad gets a hernia and he says, "His bowel was got forth into his cod."

sudden but inevitable betrayal

Yesterday my dude was telling me about this column he read, where people write in and get advice, and it's on Slate... I thought, oh jeez, he's found Prudie.

The lady with the little dog needs to chill out, put aside her resentment and get some training on the thing. Puppyhood SUCKS, but it doesn't last forever.

Also I admit I am still kind of sensitive about what gets kept and what gets tossed at my parents' house. Look, they have the room to keep ALL 16 boxes of my old stuffed animals, WHY wouldn't they keep them? Don't they love me?!

hahahaha, ja.

@sudden but inevitable betrayal: I took a bunch of stuffed animals with me when I left for college, and now that I'm solidly out of college I have relegated most of them to the closet. But sometimes I open that closet door, and there's BooBoo sitting there sadly with his nose all worn down, and I cry a little and apologize to him for growing up. I hope he understands.


@hahahaha, ja. - When I was moving out of my college apartment, my 3 foot tall stuffed gorilla, my big green frog, and my blue dinosaur were lost forever. The green frog was homemade by one of my great-grandmothers, and I have been trying, for 8 years, to relocate the other two online.


This is my new username

@hahahaha, ja. I still sleep with my childhood teddy bear. When I was a teenager, my parents used to tease me and ask if I was going to continue to sleep with that teddy bear once I grew up and got married. The answers seems like it is going to be yes, since I live with a boy that I plan to marry and the teddy bear still comes to bed quite often. Also sometimes my fiancée steals it from me during the night and I wake up and see him hugging it.

hahahaha, ja.


I'm not being sarcastic, I am legitimately happy about that.


@leon s I have been doing the same for the stuffed wolf I cuddled every night of my childhood that was tragically lost to mold when I left him in an Ontario basement for my first summer at university. No luck so far.


@This is my new username Pff, I'm married and between us we share our bed with a gigantic stuffed shark from Ikea, a body pillow, and a little stuffed bunny my husband won me from a crane game. Also sometimes the cat.

hahahaha, ja.

@This is my new username @Elsajeni: Your stories give me hope, for Ducky's sake.


I still have stuffed animals and sleep with them every night (I have a bit more than several at home, aka "my parents' house" and a few in my apartment). I hide them in the closet when I think someone might be spending the night but only then. All through college too. I always feel like having stuffed animals is a little creepy, but a lot of people I know have at least one, and I'm definitely not going to change my habits about it.


It's a puppy, that is turning into a dog quickly, and you're not putting effort into training, obvs. Unless you are, which good for you! But it takes time, be patient and consistent! But it really ticks me off when people go immediately for the puppy because "when it's young, you'll create a greater BOND and there's more LOVE and blah blah." FUCK that. There are plenty of shelter dogs that are a few years old, that are already trained in a lot of ways and just need a good home. When you get a little puppy because it's SO CUTE and cuddly and adorable, guess what, it's like getting a real baby. Puppies need a lot of attention and training and for the first few months you have them, they are A LOT of work.
/end rant

I'm Right on Top of that, Rose

@permanentbitchface Yep. All of this is true. I'm living this hell, only because I got a puppy for my ladyfriend for our anniversary. It's...trying.

George Templeton Strong

@permanentbitchface Yes to all of this! Our very elderly dog shows no signs of shuffling off her canine coil any time soon, but the other Mr. Strong and I have discussed her successor. He wants to go smaller; I want a big happy hound. But we are in agreement that back to a shelter we will go and the dog has to be at least two years old, we're thinking more like three or four, because maybe someone else has done the training and plus that prejudice against "older" dogs. Our current dog's mixed-breed's life expectancy was about 10, maybe 11, and she just turned 15. Even our vet is a little surprised, in a happy way.


@George Templeton Strong That's awesome! I really love it when people make this decision when it's just a better fit overall.


@permanentbitchface I am never getting a fucking puppy again (love you molly) (h8 u mollyyyyyy)

my future will be full of old dogs that nobody else wants to adopt. yes. and full of love for them too.

Crackity Jones

@permanentbitchface Ah, it's not just the puppies, it's all baby mammals I think... We've just added cat #3 (this is what volunteering at a cat shelter does to you) who came along as a 9 week old kitten, and OMG the naughtiness! No curtains left unclimbed, underwear left unmassacred, wastebins left unknocked over... and the secret places he has chosen to pee in preference to his (always cleaned) litter tray - awesomes. It's just so unrelenting. However, I love the little fat git and know perfectly well that he only does this stuff because he's a *baby* and this too shall end. And then I will have 3 dignified lovely big cat boys and the house will be lovely again and all will be well tra la la la.
Anyway, what I'm saying is that this LW lady should chill out, get the pup training under way and show some patience. Living creatures are not predictable, relationships require some effort and you don't just dump an animal when things aren't exactly as you imagined. So there.


Sounds like typical puppy/dog behavior, which sounds TERRIBLE to me. Unbearable. That's why I will never get a dog! Dog ownership has always baffled me--no offense to dog lovers. It's just not for me, and probably not for this woman. I suspect she has just fallen for the current pressure to own a dog...the idea that if you don't love dogs and own a dog or want a dog you are some kind of monster.
I'm here to say: it's ok to not want a dog!


@skyslang Nah, that's not typical dog behavior (maybe seriously badly trained dog), just typical puppy behavior. Puppies are cute, but they are annoying little jerks for a long time. Kind of like toddlers. If you show them what to do, they'll grow out of it.

But I agree, it's totally okay not to want a dog! I love them personally, but people who don't should not have one. Again, kind of like kids.


@skyslang Thank you!!! As a rule, I really, really don't like dogs. (Really, I don't like anything that demands attention, which is why I don't want pets or children. I don't have the energy.) I had a friend who, if I came to her house and was upset about something, would tell her dog to sit on my lap and "hug me." Oh, god, no. Not everyone loves your dog as much as you do. I don't dislike well-behaved dogs, but I also don't love them, and it seems like most people I know do not teach their dogs to behave.

But, you know, I'm probably a sociopath.


@billie_crusoe Nah, you're right. Well-trained dogs are lovely. Poorly-trained dogs are THE WORST.


Corgis are kind of the best dog if you have kids. I am always running into people who are like, "Oh my God we had a corgi when I was a kid and he was the best." One time Darwin stopped a toddler from having a meltdown just with the cuteness of his face (I'm not even kidding! Kid was about to pitch a fit, we came around the corner, Darwin wagged his nub, and kid immediately shut up)


@Megano! I wish my corgi was here at the office with me so she could press her little fox-face on the thumbs-up button. She and my daughter together are like a firestorm of adorable.



The only reason that your comment above doesn't have all the likes is because the 'like' button on it is broken.


Le Rams


@wee_ramekin Oh my god, thank you. I kept trying to hit 'like' on that comment & it wasn't working & I was concerned that it had no likes, because why??


@wee_ramekin YES YES YES. Me too. How does a like-button break? So puzzling. But @Emby, please rest-assured that some of us have been trying to like that comment for some time now, to no avail.

fondue with cheddar

@emby My guess is that you forgot to close the italics tag.


@wee_ramekin YES, I second this as well. Like like like.

Bus Driver Stu Benedict

uh i think i broke something

Bus Driver Stu Benedict

whats happpeennnniiinnnnggg

honey cowl

We all kind of hate my parents' dog. He's an adult, and very well-behaved, but he likes to escape. He jumps the fence, he digs under the fence, he opens doors with his nose. THIS HAS BEEN GOING ON FOR TWO YEARS. No amount of nice treats, cuddly toys, anything! will keep him home. It is so grating on my parents to have to track him down whenever he manages to escape. It is the worst and we hate him and I do not apologize for that.

Paket Wisata Pulau Tidung

i really really dont like pet. Because it is hard to breed it, and sometimes they poop/pee everywhere, make me feel disgusting. So i never have a pet.
travel & tour paket wisata terbaik pulau tidung murah


I got a lot of information from this post.keep sharing such informative posts. Thanks

Post a Comment

You must be logged-in to post a comment.

Login To Your Account