Posted in Almost Dorothy, Bobo the Mutt, Characters, covid19, The Mother, Themes


Ma woke up depressed, which means she didn’t wake up at all. Bobo the Mutt and I howled and jumped on the bed. Scared the hell out of her. Her eyes discombobulated when they opened. Some of her hair fell out. She batted the air with catastrophic force and her tongue lit. “You foul-smelling cunctators,” she shouted. “Get me my gun!” I lit the cigarette to shut her up. Bobo the Mutt licked her butt. She uncocked the Glock and slipped it back underneath her pillow. I regretted waking her up.

It’s been 33 days of pure isolation and 36 days since ma lost her full-time gig at the bar she called home. The death toll from the virus surged to 37,086 from 21,418 just 6 days ago. There’s really not much else to do but apply for food stamps and unemployment, but the government websites don’t work, so ma made amends to the gods she called friends. It didn’t work.

“Let’s take a yoga class,” I suggested. Ma looked at me and I looked at her. This lasted for about 60 seconds. “Fine,” she said. “I”ll wear my Lululemons.” Ma doesn’t own Lululemons, but she puts lemons in her sportsbra to make her look more crapulous. I searched for “Joachim’s Hot Yoga For Beginners: Pandemic Edition” on ma’s Facebook.

Joachim is a retired elementary school teacher who has way too much time on his hands. He is self-taught, which means he sucks at yoga, but he looks good in athletic wear, which means he doesn’t wear athletic wear. He doesn’t wear anything at all. He’s a yogi, of sorts, the kind that makes you think about the loneliness he must endure. This is fine for ma. Ma has reached the age where form and function are incongruous like Joachim backlit on his patio teaching yoga to vampires in the nude.

The class elevated ma’s mood and stretched her mind. We did down dog, warrior pose, tree pose, upward facing dog pose, warrior II pose, bound ankle pose, and seated forward fold. We also did camel pose, plank pose, side plank, the other side plank, and planted cactus pose. It was a good workout, but ma didn’t really participate in the physical sense. She just watched Joachim stretch his buns in his invisible Lululemons.

“He’s a hot diddy,” ma said. I couldn’t take the temperature of his nipples, but ma was satisfied. That’s all that mattered. Joachim’s insatiable stretching and encouraging words disappeared the prevalence of sadness in our house. When the class ended, ma gave Joachim a vociferous standing ovation. “What a laniferous body you have,” she shouted. Her overzealous smile lasted a generation after Joachim cut the feed.

“Let’s eat,” ma said. “I’m famished.”

Bobo the Mutt licked his butt. Ma crawled into bed instead. I Googled “how to apply for food assistance” and “when will it end” in multiple languages.

I dare you to find the fimble-famble and post it comments.

Posted in Almost Dorothy, Bobo the Mutt, Characters, Family

Bobo the Mutt is Dead! Long Live Bobo the Mutt!

“Real isn’t how you are made,” said the Skin Horse. “It’s a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real.” The Velveteen Rabbit, Margery Williams.

Ma and I are sad to announce that Bobo the Mutt is dead, but we are happy to announce that we are writing again even if it’s about dead mutts. Bobo lived a long life, a happy life, despite ma’s insistence that Bobo the Mutt was really a cat and not even a real dog with real dog hair and real dog eyes and all the other parts that make dogs dogs.

That damn thing freaked me out, she said. I always expected him to meow. 

Last night, ma gave Bobo the Mutt a eulogy or eulogized Bobo the Mutt. She said things to the guests who had gathered to hear ma make slurs and slur about Bobo the Mutt’s fascinating life as a civil rights activist, hippie and unlicensed therapist. When the eulogy ended, not one of his stuffed animal farm friends and family left the room without a tear or the appearance of a tear drawn on their cheeks. It was a cool evening.

Bobo the Mutt was a cool, cuddly dude and pain in the ass weighing in at 4.5 pounds, which includes the ounces. He was nosey and noisy and loved the hell out of mangoes and mongooses. He’d cut ya’ if you tried to get away with not sharing your watermelon. He was that kind of mutt–all selfish and giving–that was selfish and giving.

He loved his pink elephant and he loved his yellow bunny. He loved his green dinosaur and he loved his shredded sheep. He loved his lion king and he loved his fuzzy bear. He loved to lick. He barked a lot. He’d snort like a pig and we loved him so much. He loved everything, ma said. Especially the things he could eat.

That night when we went to bed, that night was last night, ma tucked me in and sang a lullaby to help me fall asleep. It was one of those lullabies that starts with a low hum coming from the shallow shores of the throat then builds up and gets deeper as the source of the lullaby moves deeper in.

Ma didn’t really sing me a lullaby because she can’t sing and even if she could sing she would never sing me a song or lullaby because she is ma and Bobo is Bobo.

I wish I had the teeth to drag him back from the dead, I said. I wish I had the power to reconstruct every one of his ashes into something solid and real again.

But you can’t, ma said. Because once you become real REAL, you can’t ever come back. 

Bobo the Mutt, June 2001 – January 12, 2016.

Posted in Almost Dorothy, Bobo the Mutt, Family, The Mother

Poop Shoot

Mom and I are at a dog grooming seminar and the seminar teacher just said poop shoot. I ask mom what a poop shoot is and she says it’s where the shit shoots out. The lady behind us tells mom to shhh. Mom tells the lady to shove it up her shit shoot. I tell mom it’s called a poop shoot and Bobo the Mutt lets out a toot. Mom tells the lady to shut the f up. It’s called a shit shoot when it comes out of that woman’s mouth. I’m so embarassed. The seminar teacher yells at us to take our dispute outside, so we did, and it smells. I think mom stepped in dog shit or maybe it’s the lady who mom just scared the shit out of. I need water. Bobo pants. The lady’s pants are wet. The crowd laughs. Mom wins and the lady withdraws. We never go home empty handed.

Posted in Almost Dorothy, Amanda Bernstein, Bobo the Mutt, Characters, Family, The Mother, Themes

Valentine’s Day Threesome

Mom is less sad today because she got laid. Mom is less sad because Amanda Bernstein got her a Valentine’s Day gift. Mom is less sad because Amanda sat on her lap and kissed her on the lips for an hour. Mom is less sad because I told her she should be less sad. I swear I’ll punch you, I said. She just laughed and said shut up as if she’d never been sad before or knew the concept of sadness. It’s Valentine’s Day, I said. She said she knew it was. She said I should find a date, fall in love, and get laid. I told her I was too young and not into sex, yet. Our mutt Bobo the Mutt kissed mom on the lips. Mom kissed Bobo the Mutt on the lips. It wasn’t gross and wasn’t meant to be. It was just mom, Amanda Bernstein and Bobo the Mutt in a threesome, full of love–their tongues licking each other like they were licking a rapidly melting vanilla ice cream cone. I just watched because I’m not into women or mutts.

Posted in Almost Dorothy, Bobo the Mutt, Characters, Family, The Mother, Themes

Almost Dorothy Learns To Fly A Kite

I’m gonna take a break, meaning I’m gonna to learn how to fly a kite. I got one for X-mas and it’s fat, i.e. it’s really awesome. The neighbor’s kid says I’m a jerk but who cares what that pig says. He doesn’t have a kite or a mom. Mom’s gonna kick his ass and then some. It’s Sunday. We didn’t go to Church today because mom wasn’t in the mood for coffee and doughnuts. She had premarital sex last night with the neighbor’s father. She does this every once in a while for a little extra cash. She says kites aren’t free and counts the cash. Yesterday when we went to the fishmonger we bought squid with tentacles, salmon and shrimp. Mom hates fish but I love the smell. Reminds me of the day Bobo the Mutt died or ran away. Damn dog loved fish. I’ve always wanted to learn how to swim.

Posted in Almost Dorothy, Bobo the Mutt, Characters, The Mother


Mom says I make her sick but I think she’s got crabs. Keeps itching herself like a son of a bitch. Bobo the Mutt chews his ass. Mom is topless. Fucking fleas, she says. Mom’s got to work tonight and I’m bored. Christmas is 3 days away and I already know what I’m going to get I got crabs to get you this, she says. I tell her she’s full of shit. I hate bras.

Posted in Almost Dorothy, Bobo the Mutt, Squinny

Bobo the Mutt

My fascination with red began with Cyndi Lauper. She was my favorite singer. Ms. Lauper also reminds me of my best friend Squinny who looked just like Cyndi when she died her hair red for “Time After Time”, my all time favorite song. I would reenact the video at home with Bobo the Mutt who took care of me while mom was at work. Bobo the Mutt played Cyndi Lauper because he looked just like her. Shaggy mop head and dog breath. I didn’t mind but I was jealous of him because he looked like a star.

I always wanted to be Ms. Lauper but I played her boyfriend in the “Time After Time” music video instead. His red shoes and jean jacket became my wardrobe throughout the 80’s. Obviously that’s when my fascination with red began.

One day Bobo the Mutt got lost and never returned. I’m not sure if he ran away or just couldn’t find his way home. I felt like Ms. Lauper’s boyfriend when she left him at the train station except I couldn’t find him when I went looking.

Or maybe I did.

I invented the stupidest scenarios, which makes me crazy. For example, I made the case to the police that Bobo the Mutt had to have been kidnapped by a band of Bolsheviks (the reds) or possibly swallowed up by dark matter or whisked away in Wonder Woman’s invisible plane.

Mom said, “Bobo the Mutt will be alright. He’s tough as nails.”

I’m not sure if he was tough enough. I’m not sure if he was alright in the end. All I know is that I think of him from time to time. In reality, Bobo the Mutt probably never made it too far. Probably never knew what hit him.

|Neil de la Flor