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Maybe he misses Manhattan

wiener in winter

The wiener in winter – NYC, Dec. 12, 2008

There are two dogs under me on the sofa. I’m sitting on them because they wouldn’t move when I tried to sit down and — wait — the wiener just moved. Now he’s at my elbow, jerking his head around and licking the air.

Internets, I do not know why he licks the air. He licks the air, sways his head around, whimpers, licks the air some more, licks my arm for a little while, licks the sofa pillows for a little while, and then, exhausted, he collapses. When he’s finally quieted, if I show him any interest at all, if I even so much as glance at him from the corner of my eye, his head snaps up and he continues, frantic in his efforts to lick my arm, then the sofa pillows, then the air, for as long as wienerly possible. It’s not cute. It’s awful. It amuses house guests, but only until it goes on for so long that they begin to worry about his well-being. The other night he licked a sofa pillow for over thirty minutes. It was so soaked full of dog spit it felt like someone pissed on it.

I recently praised Theo online for being officially house-trained after four years of exhaustive work and now that we’ve got that under control, I feel the need to address his obsessive-compulsive licking.

You may not know this, but one of his nick-names is Lightning Fast Poo Tongue. He’s recently gone back to eating Valentine’s poop as soon as he can snatch it from her bum. (We thought we had that under control – HA! Who’s the dumbass now?) He will eat a large turd on our morning walk and afterward, if I do not pay careful attention to where his tongue is in relation to my whereabouts, there will be a poo-tongue smacking the inside of my eyeball before I can say “What the.”

You guys, I could get a BRAIN INFECTION. And I would have to tell the doctor it was because I got poo in my eye.

Why oh why does my wiener dog compulsively lick the air and/or surrounding objects while swaying his head and whining? Why do I have  a raw spot on my forearm where all the hair has been licked off? Why are the sofa pillows always damp? Is it anxiety? Is it a medical condition? Is he trying to tell me something? Am I somehow failing in my attempt to display appropriate dominance? WHAT WOULD CESAR DO?

Please help me. Don’t help me. Forget me. Help Theo. Help the little wiener. (I’m begging you.)

P.S. Valentine is still sitting under me. She’s bonier than you’d think.

This is my third Just Write. Join us!

I don’t know how this happened. (Yes I do.)

When I was a little girl, I thought it would be fantastic to collect salt & pepper shakers. I remember eyeballing all kinds of salt & pepper shakers in souvenir shops while on vacation with my parents, and wishing I was a grown-up with my own kitchen so I could collect all the most beautiful shakers!

Then I grew up and realized how lame a salt & pepper shaker collection really is. And then I realized I own not one, not two, but six (SIX!) sets of salt & pepper shakers. All acquired after I was old enough to vote. Oh. Goldfish.

the collection

I don’t know what to do. Do I embrace the collection and display it? Do I attempt to find worthy homes for all but one set? (Ha.) Or do I rotate them out every so often? You know, when I’m feeling a fifties kitsch vibe, I put the pink pigs out. When I feel like a WWII military wife, I pull out the super cool 1940’s glass-that-looks-like-plastic set. Lately I’m feeling the little black dog peeing on the red fire hydrant. It’s appropriate to my current state of being. (Am I the fire hydrant or the dog? You decide.) But one day I might really want giant copper shakers or maybe I’ll want to hold a wiener while I spice my food! YOU NEVER KNOW.

So what do I do? Display all or rotate-when-the-mood strikes?

How To Brush Your Dog’s Teeth

Ask A Serious Girl


Something interesting has happened.  I’ve received more emails about my prenup post than I’ve ever gotten about anything I’ve ever written.  Ever.  I was nervous posting it.  I thought for sure if I got any email it would be hate mail berating me for planning my divorce before I was even married.  Whereas I see our prenup as a testament to the strength of our marriage, most people I meet only have to hear the word “prenup” before they start frothing at the mouth.

You, on the other hand, have completely surprised me.  All of a sudden I’m getting emails and phone calls and requests for more information about prenups.  And you really sound interested .  One person even asked a very good question.

This marks the seventy-ninth time I’ve tried to sit down and write another prenup post, but each time I’ve tried I write five or six pages before I realize that there is no way on earth I can say everything I want to say in one post.  So here’s what I’m thinking:  Since so many of you seem to be looking for more prenuptial information, and since I have a giant crush on prenups, I’m going to write weekly prenup posts.  At least until I’ve run out of things to tell you about them.  Which could be in two weeks or six, I have no idea, but I am really excited.

This week I’ll start with the person who asked the really good question.  I’ve received permission to post the question and my answer here, and since I’ve always secretly wanted to write an advice column, I’m going to pretend that’s what I’m doing.

Q: My fiancé and I just got engaged a few months ago.  We’ve lived together for a year and we’ve kept all of our accounts separate. We’ve never talked about money and I’m worried about what will happen when we get married.  I know she has credit cards but I don’t know how many or what the balances are and she doesn’t know about my debts.  I have no idea if she has any savings but I know I don’t have much.  I showed her your prenup post with the hopes that it would get us started talking about money but she immediately put it off as being “unromantic”.  How can I get her to talk about our financial goals without freaking her out?

A: If she feels like it’s unromantic, make it romantic!  I’m not kidding.  When Mike and I talk about our finances we open a bottle of wine, put of vase of flowers on the table, dim the lights and light candles.  It makes the conversation much lovelier.  Set aside a night just for the two of you.  Buy a nice bottle and a bouquet of flowers.  Don’t drink?  Make hot chocolate.  Turn off your cell phones.  Start the conversation by telling her how much you love her and how excited you are to spend the rest of your life with her.  Then start asking her questions. Ask her if she wants to buy a house and where she hopes to buy it.  How big would it be?  What kind of car does she want to be driving in five years?  When does she want to have kids?  Does she want children?  How many?  Will she want to be a stay-at-home-mom or will she want to work? Where does she see herself in ten years?  You need to get her talking about the kind of life she envisions for her future because it’s the life she’s envisioning for your future too.  Then start telling her about your goals.  Where do you see yourself in ten years?  What’s your timeline for children?  Do you want to buy a house?  She needs to know these things about you.  You both need to figure out where you have common lines and where your ideas are different.  You’re bound to have some different plans, that’s only natural, but where can you come together in happy compromise?

I realize that you specifically asked how to start a conversation about finances, but the plain truth is that your future depends on your finances.  The financial choices you make today affect the kind of life you have tomorrow.  When the two of you have decided what kind of life you want tomorrow, you can begin to talk about the financial decisions that need to be made today.

A very good lawyer once told me that most people spend more time planning their annual vacations than they do planning their lives.  If you don’t plan your life, someone else will plan it for you.  And you probably won’t like their plan.

UPDATE:  2/19/10
Sometimes I get all up on a high horse thinking that my way is the best way and I need to remember that isn’t the case.  This week I had to eat crow when I heard from a woman who just broke off her engagement because her fiancé wanted her to sign a prenup so awful four different lawyers told her she’d be making a terrible mistake if she signed it.  She pointed out that the prenup showed her exactly what her fiance thought of her and she was glad for it, but I suddenly worried that I’ve been really insensitive about the topic.  So now I’m rethinking the weekly prenup posts because, geez. I feel like a jerk.  Though I promise I will answer the emails from those of you who asked specific prenup questions.  (Your answers are coming!)