Tofu has landed. I suppose I should mention that Tofu is the new dog. His official name is Tofu Always Helpful.

His first day went amazingly well with Boo The Cat. They are roughly the same size, although he’s a young fella and has more energy than she does. Even so, they sniffed and proceeded to politely ignore one another for most of the first day.

Boo’s concerns were territorial. She quickly jumped on her claw wheel and demonstrated to him that it is her toy. When that failed to impress him, she crouched in his pink crate and glared at him. He gave no sign that her crate claiming was a calamity.

She tried to get into his food; he let her gnaw on his treats. He likes to toss her catnip mice around and she seems revolted by the display.

For the first few days, Boo was stiff and resistant whenever I would pet her. She eventually gave some sign that she would forgive me for bringing her a dog, but it was several days before she bunted me and really seemed like herself for the most part.

For a young thing, Tofu is pretty low energy. I am frankly astonished at how perfectly he suits us. He barks when someone knocks and that’s all. He is interested in other dogs and squirrels, but he’s not a psycho about it. He is a bit shy of new people, but he is less so with each new person.

A mandate for dog walking is what I asked for, so I am not allowed to complain about it. Much. We go out before dawn and it’s a great pleasure to wake up in the morning and say to my companion, “Let’s go pee on things!” Nothing else I say will provoke such joy for the rest of the day.

The first morning, I was surprised to see a bunny dart away as we walked out. A night bunny? I realized it was more likely a rat, but I’m going to console myself with the conviction that we have an infestation of night bunnies instead. What a hippity hoppity Halloween it shall be!!

I sense a general unclenching around here, not just in my house, but in the whole area. It’s the vibe anywhere I go. It’s not optimistic or cheerful exactly, but maybe a prelude to optimism. Baltimore is letting out a big sigh and getting on with things.

There was bizarre outdoor karaoke down the block from my house, and little kids have been rampaging and leaving toys with wheels in the alley in greater numbers than I have seen in two years. I would say the forecast for Halloween is a four bagger. I can’t be wrong again this time, except that I can.

After one week, Boo is back to her habit of yelling at me as I wake up and start my day. She doesn’t care that there’s a dog, although it’s not possible to be certain. She may be yelling, “There’s a dog in the house!”

I hesitated to walk them both at the same time. What if she freaks out at the same time that he decides to exhibit some uncharacteristic aggression?

There’s no hurry to try stupid things. One stupid thing at a time for now.

When we went walking in the park, we saw a mom pushing a stroller with another baby on her back, an older child walking alongside and a huge dog on a leash. Her confidence was breathtaking. I remember that.

What’s the big deal of juggling two or three creatures amongst the night bunnies?

We can all relax, just a little more.


The giveaway copies of my book are going out!! Request one now if you haven’t already. I’m not sure when the budget is going to run out, but you’ll stay in the drawing until you win!! What a deal!!


Too Much Damned Candy, Inc.

Every time I plan to have a chummy Halloween fire, it rains. This year? Rain and four bags of candy left over. That’s four out of four. We had candy for dinner and barely made a dent.


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