The dog, old cell phones, and cheesy music

The Eds and I have a routine. When my alarm goes off, he LEAPS from his dog bed onto my bed, hips allowing, and presses his dog head into my shoulder and we have our good morning hug. I allow hugs from Edsel.

Then we get out of bed together and stretch at the same time. He always looks at me before he stretches. Then he goes outside while I pee for the first of 30430430404 times that day, lately.

Then I get his pills ready and he takes those with his breakfast while I make coffee and shower. Also, I’ve begun to observe that I shut the door when I shower, and really, why?


He gets in his chair and watches me blog. I’ll bet if I look over there right now he’s peering at me like I hung the moon. Hang on.

HAH. He was.

They say dogs with his condition live 6–24 months after they’re diagnosed. It’s only been three, so I’m trying not to even consider any sort of Edsel end.

I’ve had four years of having just Edsel alone, without Tallulah, and in some ways I’m glad I did. He came on as the backup dog, but I believe he’s done a fine job of being the main dog, a few chewed puppies notwithstanding.

Oh my god, I looked over there again and he’s still staring at me. Put it back in your pants, Edsel.

Anyway, thank you for your words of wisdom yesterday. I will take them to heart. You know things are bad when Miss Doxie texts you for your address. “I know your address is in here somewhere,” she said, having scrolled through our stupid myriad texts, “but just tell me and end this misery. I’m sending you a subpoena.”


You could probably make a book out of our texts. Also, she is not in my address book, which means I never send her a Christmas card, and I realize there are a lot of people I know since we all went digital who I don’t send Christmas cards to.

In fact, that reminds me.

Back in the ’90s, when we all liked Sugar Ray and brown lipstick, I worked with a woman who broke her foot. She needed a ride to work for, like, six weeks and I volunteered to be her driver. I came to call her Broken Foot Woman, and we got quite close over the weeks. We stayed friends after we left that job. I remember several giggly brunches, back when I was the kind of person who went to brunch. And giggled.

She moved to Iowa, and I moved here. I send her a Christmas card every year (Broken Foot Woman, 1 Main Street, Iowa). She’s not a Christmas-card-sender.

I think people who only send cards to those who send cards to them are the most mean-spirited of people.

Anyway, this year she mailed me a letter! She said she felt bad that I write her a card every year and that she never sends one. (See. That doesn’t even register with me. I just like sending them.) She’s coming to town this spring and wants to get together, and she added her phone number, and have I remembered to call or text? No. I have not.

So I’m glad I brought this up right now because now I will possibly remember to get in touch with her.

You know. Maybe.

Broken Foot Woman always had a gigantic Thanksgiving, where she took the furniture out of her living room to make room for tables forming a giant L shape. I went to it once, with my mother, stepfather and husband, fmr. I was sitting next to an earring-ed middle-aged man whose music we were playing. He’d brought a CD of his band or what have you.

Broken Foot Woman’s teenage daughter was sitting across from me, as we had formed a kind of bond and had spent much of Thanksgiving in her room talking about makeup.

“What is this cheesy music?” she asked.

Oh, dear.

Also, June says, warming to the subject and getting more coffee, Broken Foot Woman and I were among the first people at work to get cell phones. I’m certain getting a cell phone was Marvin’s idea, so I could call him when I’d been kidnapped or whatever bad thing he was certain was going to happen finally happened.

I had this giant gray phone the size of your shoe. One day, someone at work said wouldn’t it be hilarious if I called Broken Foot Woman on HER cell phone, from across the aisle. So I did.

“That just cost me $4,” she groused.

Where the hell did I carry that giant shoe phone? In my purse? I remember graduating from that to a phone with blue buttons on it.

Or maybe the phone itself was blue. It played Moonlight Serenade when I got a call.

But then I got a silver flip phone, and I went to the mall and had it bedazzled with pink gems that formed an Eiffel Tower. I also hung a Hello Kitty from the antenna.

I was 37 years old.

Anyway, I know this has all been pressing news and I will leave you now to head to work, with my phone that does not flip or have buttons. One day they will sell iPhones at the vintage store and 21-year-olds will think they’re quaint and use them as their dating profile name.

iPhone 8 Plus, 27, M. Not here for hookups.

This has all been very important.


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At one point, I was sort of hot, in a "she's 27 and probably a 7" kind of a way. Now I'm old and have to develop a charming personality. Guess how that's going.

40 thoughts on “The dog, old cell phones, and cheesy music”

  1. I didn’t comment yesterday because I was very late to the party. I am also not great in that area. I ate, cried, drank shandys (with my psych meds, my shrink had a fit) and then dated too soon after my husband died. I got pissed at and pissy with friends in my blinding anger grief stage.
    I am going to take some of yesterday’s advice to heart as well. Prayer helps me too, Catholic prayers by rote from my childhood can soothe my soul. Shopping can too but that needs to stop. Phone calls help and losing myself in some decent TV (damn you Comcast for taking away TCM and Discovery ID from the tier I am in). I am having surgery on Tuesday, D&C and a biopsy and have been a crazy lady. Couple that with my husband’s one year deathaversary/angelversary (pick your face, mine varies) coming up on the 28th and it’s a tough month here too, new beau or not. Here’s to a better February for everyone.
    Edsel is a super sweet, good boy. My dogs give me adoration, I would never have survived this past year without it. Elphaba, my lone kitty does too. Sometimes I could use a third hand.


  2. Never got around to commenting yesterday. I send over 20p cards and I asked my readers this year how many they send. I wrote a note in most of them this year but I put a year end recap poem with photos copied in the margin. Many peoole reach out to me and say it isn’t Christmas till they get my card. I cannot bring myself to cut peoole off my list unless they are real shit heads. Anyway I was surprised how many readers commented on my blog that they give people a 1 yr grace period and then if they do not send a card they are off the list. That made me a little sad but I thought maybe I am being a little over emotional about it. Then I read your thoughts and I think ‘yeah- send the dang cards to the peeps you want to stay in touch with.’ I’m not on FB much so my cards are my ‘posts.’


  3. As usual – loved your post! It took me down memory lane – not exactly sure why other than that I have too many sentimental bones inherited from the “family.” ha ha. The title just made me think about a song, “Old dogs, children and watermelon wine” by Tom T Hall. I know that most are way to young and never heard of him! But I heard this song when I traveled to MI with Deb in 1973. I had not been on many airplanes at that time and we both thought it was so cool to be able to put those headphones on and listen to this music! (didn’t take much to entertain us) I still love that song and it still makes me cry. “bladder too close to my eyeballs” – Do you remember hearing Grandma Blondin saying that?
    Oh well…. 🙂


  4. Oh, the evolution of cellphones. When I first met my husband, he had the kind that came with a gigantic battery in its own suitcase that you’d have to schlep around if you wanted to talk. I think I got my first cellphone sometime around 2001. Of course it was a Nokia and you’d have to pull up the antenna to make a call. I had AT&T at the time and it was the worst coverage. I could never get a signal. I ditched them and went over to Nextel because walkie-talkies!

    My dad’s wife went out and got herself a cellphone when you had to pay by the minute. She used that phone as if it were a landline until her first bill came and it was over $1000.00. At least texting wasn’t available then because when it first became a thing, it was something like .25 or .50 per text and everyone’s cellphone bills jumped a few hundred bucks.

    I remember when having the tiniest phone that could practically slip into your ear canal was the trendy thing and now look at us. We carry tablets that have phone capabilities. The bigger the better. For those of us who are sight-impaired in our old age, we like big screens.


  5. Don’t forget my “if you can’t afford the vet, you can’t afford the pet” asshat of a vet who gave our little dog six weeks if we didn’t do chemo. She lived six more years PLUS six weeks. To the day. So, whatever with their predictions.

    I try to catch my alarm before it goes off. The annoying dogs that live with me now insist that I come and tend to their needs the second they hear it. They’re a big much at 5AM. No alarm – they sleep all morning.

    My favorite cellphone was the one with the case that slid over it. It had a real keyboard! So much better for texting than the old numeric/alpha business we did before that. Or so we thought… if we only knew what was ahead!

    Lovely post lovely June!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Speaking of pets, I had to call (desktop phone!) the fancy business that sells food and meds for our vet (erinarian, yes), and am delighted by their recorded answer: “…If you are a pet [pause] or horse owner, please press 3…”


  7. I have a burning question. Where do you store your Christmas cards for the next year? I am not a sender because I am not organized, but I bought some on sale this year because they had puppies on them. I have done this in the past, and put them in our Christmas decoration box, which comes out around mid-December, and by then it is too late for me to sit down and do them. So, do I dig out our fall/Thanksgiving box which is on the bottom of the pile now and put the cards in there, or put them somewhere else?


    1. I put my Christmas cards with all of my stationery, which in my new house resides in one of the kitchen cupboards. In the old days, that was all in my hutch, but the hutch is gone.


    2. I keep a Google Doc for the holidays and put notes in it about what I want to remember next November/December – like where I put those cards, what was a terrible idea and what was a good idea, and even what my siblings-in-law donated to the previous year, because they have requested donations to particular charities (and so have we) but they often donate to their own charity, in which case I donate to my own the following year. It’s the most spiteful charitable act you can imagine.



  8. But Edsel doesn’t chew puppies at Dog Days, right? When he’s not protecting his turf and you.

    I don’t suppose the musician was Greg Brown?


    1. I can’t recall. This was Los Angeles. Everyone is a musician. And no. He does not eat the dogs at daycare. I have no idea why it’s okay to walk amongst 87 dogs all day long and then as soon as he gets home he packs heat and sends irate letters to other dogs.


      1. Never mind; I lost track of where you were dining with Broken Foot who moved to Iowa. Greg Brown is an Iowa musician songwriter etc. Probably doesn’t live on Main Street.


  9. I used to be a member of a messageboard (several of your faithful readers were) and every year we would try to out glitter each other with our Christmas Cards. When the messageboard died a sad and horrible death so did the cards all except a few faithful. I absolutely adore getting those cards every year even though I no longer send them. I open the envelope cautiously and BOOM! Glitter explosion.

    I love Edz and hate that I will never have the pleasure and hugging him and squeezing him and calling him Edz. Please hug and snuggle him a little extra for me.

    Have a wonderful day Coot.


  10. I think Edsel has a crush on you. He doesn’t want sex. He just wants to be around you, in your presence, hold your hand, put his chin on your shoulder, ride in the car, anything you want to do he wants to be ready to be your companion. Doggy love is unconditional and the very best love feeling on earth.


  11. This post is hilarious! Vets are like doctors, they don’t know how long your pet is going to live. Focus on enjoying Edsel and try not to think about what the vet said. I know, that is so hard to do. I’ve dealt with a time frame my vet gave my beloved Oscar Snuggles.

    How exciting that your broken foot/giggles friend wants to see you when she comes to GSO. That will be something to look forward to, a happy event to anticipate.

    “What is this cheesy music?” she asked. This made me snort laugh. Sounds like something I would do (foot in mouth).

    I haven’t sent Christmas cards in years, except for a few out-of-town friends. I feel guilty every time I open a Christmas card.

    The first cell phone we had was a bag phone about the size of a small cooler we kept between the seats of my mini van and it was ONLY used for EMERGENCIES! Seems like the cost was $20/month, but it was like $50/minute over the minute limit we had, which was probably only 15-20 minutes/month. I’m so glad to have unlimited talk and text now.

    I guess I would be Motorola Bag.



  12. You sound a lot more upbeat today! It’s definitely funny to think about cell phones – their sizes, what was happening in the world (and in makeup) when the first cells phones, then flip phones, then smartphones emerged. I can just imagine how much your face must have lit up when you bedazzled your phone.


    1. The mall bedazzler didn’t know what the Eiffel Tower looked like. I had to go to a card store and find a picture of an Eiffel Tower, buy it, and bring it over to her. [eyeroll emoji]


  13. When my grandpa got macular degeneration and couldn’t see I helped him write his cards every year.

    He had a basement with dark wood paneling on the walls, and one light bulb. There was a black folding table that had at least 10 years of Christmas cards. Every year we’d find the stack that had been sent the previous year and we’d write cards to those people, plus any others I thought we should send a card to.

    When he passed and I was cleaning out his basement I had a hard time deciding what to do with those cards.

    Also, my puppy just likes to gnaw me to death. I’m hoping the marks all over my hands will result in looks like Edsel’s when Molly finally decides to be a grown up.


  14. I love Edsel. I don’t even remember what my first cell phone looked like, but I thought I was all that when I got a red flip phone. I’m down to sending out two Christmas cards, both to friends in different states. I’ll probably be sending only one next year.


  15. Sugar Ray and brown lipstick. Am dead.

    Try to not think about the time frame. (Yeah right, easy to say, I know.) He could surprise the vet and live a nice long life on his medication.

    My dogs don’t look at me the way Edsel looks at you. I need to get me a dog that does.


  16. “Also, June says, warming to the subject and getting more coffee,”
    Lines like that are only part of why I pander to your writing. I loved this post, a daily bread-and-butter and still always real sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Four years! Wow, I hadn’t realized Edsel had been your main dog for four years. Good dog, Edsel.

    I’m one of the few who still sends Christmas cards and each year, I get fewer in return. I guess social media has replaced Christmas cards for many.


    1. My mother used to send Christmas cards to her family, my Dad’s family, Dad’s work people , her work people, etc. you get the drift. In every card she wrote the equivalent of a letter. And not the same thing in every card, mind you. Only a small percentage of cards she received back had notes in them. It used to infuriate my Dad, but she still did it for probably 50 years before she got Alzheimer’s and couldn’t write anymore. Thinking back on it now, it makes me mad, too. Not one year, could any of those people think “Youknow, Barbara always writes the sweetest notes, maybe I’ll write a few lines.” Nope. Never.


    2. Awww, morning pupper hugs are the best! I hope Edz defies all estimates of longevity, and years from now, you’ll wonder what you were worried about. Also, I had a metallic pink Razr phone. We were all super-girly with our first flip phone.


  18. OH, sweet Edsel … I think that he is just the sweetest dog (except for the puppy chewing!). Just enjoy every morning hug and longing stare from him for now, but I believe he’ll be around a while. He loves you so much!

    (BTW, I am sooooo sorry that I missed yesterday’s post … I’ve been a bit busy the past few days and haven’t kept up with social media much. You did get some really good advice and I wish you all the best in getting out of your doldrum state!)


  19. I love that Eds looks at you like you have hung the moon and stars in the sky just for him. You saved him and he never forgets. He stares at you lovingly and thankfully. And, ok, maybe a little ocd-ily. But that face…! Enjoyed this morning’s post, btw. My first ‘cell’ phone was a big bag phone: an actual full size phone in a leatherette bag. You plugged the phone into your cigarette lighter ‘cause you only used it in your car. So, I guess that makes it a ‘car’ phone.


  20. I love Moonlight Serenade, the orchestral version. The cell phone version would probably make me hate Moonlight Serenade.

    I am one of those mean-spirited people…planning not to send Christmas cards, then when I get 5 or 6 of them, I feel guilty and send cards to only those folks. I write, by HAND, nice long note in there to make up for the pity card I’m sending them. My husband is Facebook friends with 99% of our potential Christmas card list, and he’s a prolific poster on the old FB…there’s no Christmas updates to send out to the masses anymore.

    Each year I get a card from a close friend that I’m not even sure she has touched with her own hand. Everything is pre-printed, card and envelope and inside signature. Looks very pretty and stylish, and so impersonal. More money than time I guess. I send her a card with a long note, written BY HAND, hoping she’ll at least enjoy a homemade touch. Oh and lots of glitter on her card too. Maybe I am mean spirited after all. Passive aggressive, even through the US mail.


    1. Do you know what I don’t like? Cards that don’t fold out, so you can’t stand them up. I get more and more of those now, that are just like a postcard. How am I supposed to display them?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That’s the kind we send. And I can see it propped up (on someone else’s poor card) in your kitchen in one of your stitch fix pictures. I gave you some silent props for making the best of it when I saw that!


  21. We had a cell phone in the car back when it had to be mounted and an antennae glued outside the car. Trendy is what we were.
    It is a gift to have a dog’s devotion. I almost spit out my muffin at “a few chewed puppies.” Bless his heart.


  22. Having some of the first cellphones was very exciting even if I did have to lock the gigantic monster in the trunk of the car to keep teenagers from running up the bill!
    Hope your day is wonderful!


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