Daylight Savings Ends, Leaving the World in Total Darkness and Chaos

Now that it gets dark at 4 PM, my evening walks with Bess have gone from this:


to this:


Oh and BTW, the little white dots are actually the tiny eyes of WOLF SPIDERS.

So that’s fun.


It’s a rainy day here in Austin. For the past two or three antediluvian days, local news stations have been waxing apocalyptic on Facebook about the upcoming deluge and, consequently, my grocery store was a madhouse packed with the overanxious and the duped. This isn’t Patricia, people. All I wanted was a sandwich and a six pack. It took like 30 minutes. I considered the legal implications of simply leaving cash on the shelf; I mean, wouldn’t I have technically paid for it? Probably not.

Anyway, I grew up watching Seinfeld, and it gives me great pleasure to have worked on Kramer:

kramer seinfeld dog

This is one of the first portraits in which I actually cartoonized the face a bit to match Kramer’s expression:

kramer dog

The astute viewer will notice that I decided to include the lobster shirt. It is one of my favorites in the show.

This costume will be available soon. I have been working on Jerry and George:

seinfeld dog puffy shirt

seinfeld george big coat goretex

Elaine will be tricky. I haven’t even started yet.


When to Use “Rescue”

by Coat & Tails on

The other day, while I was at the dog park, Bess started chasing this other dog around. I learned that his name was Mr. Wiggles*. I asked Mr. Wiggles’ owner where she got him, and she told me that she rescued him. Intrigued, I inquired further by asking if she had personally saved it from some sort of disaster or imminent death. I learned that she had actually acquired Mr. Wiggles through a rescue group.

But methinks that she did the adopting. Not the rescuing. It occurred to me that perhaps some people don’t know the difference. So I thought a short guide would help navigate these murky waters.

When it’s Appropriate to Say that You Rescued an Animal

  1. When you’ve gone into a burning building to save an animal from being burned alive:

fireman rescuing cat

“I just rescued this kitty from death by giant, raging fire.”

  1. When you’re an officer of the department of the police and you remove animals from unsatisfactory conditions:

police officer rescuing a dog

“I just rescued this dog from its imbecile ‘owner’ whose neglect of this dog would have ultimately killed it.”

  1. When you spend a lot of time secretively running around town in your underwear saving animals from evil villains as a result of having super powers and/or a lot of childhood trauma:

superman kitty

“I just rescued Mr. Banana Balls from The Adolescent, a cruel villain whose childhood trauma – which is concomitant to the hero’s (disenchantment with the public school system) – causes him to torture small animals.”

  1. When you’re a volunteer, employee, or otherwise directly involved with organizations that work to prevent animals from being euthanized.

animal rescue volunteer


“I’ve rescued like 10 dogs by helping them find homes so they weren’t euthanized.”

Note: Although I’m talking more generally, this category could include taking in a stray and either keeping it or turning it over to organizations equipped to properly handle the situation, since the animal might have died otherwise.

Ultimately, it’s likely that you did not rescue an animal; you probably just adopted it. So just say that you adopted it. If you want to be a rescuer, then get involved with the animal-rescue process. When in doubt, just show some humility. Geez. 

* The name has been changed to protect the identity of the dog involved.

Scary Forest Man

by Coat & Tails on

This evening, I was hiking on the trail near my place of residence with Bess. It’s a lovely trail with very few people. But sometimes, there are Scary Forest People. Today, we came across Scary Forest Man. I’ve seen him before. He was alone. This time, he was stopped in the middle of the trail (annoying) and stared at me as I approached (creepy). Here is what he kind of looked like:

scary forest man

His dogs were tied to the same leash, but he wasn’t holding onto it, so they were like erratic dog nunchucks.

dog nunchucks

Scary Forest Man then said unnecessarily loudly, “You two have similar bodies!”

This was probably the weirdest possible way of saying that Bess and I are both tall and skinny (and white?).

I said “Yep, that’s why I chose her.” Which is not really true, but sometimes I don’t know what to say.

Scary Forest Man said “Yeah that’s also why I chose my dogs: they’re short and fat.”

I didn’t really know how to respond to this either, especially because his dogs weren’t short or fat, so laughed nervously and said, “Ok bye bye.”

He then started following me and Bess as we walked away, talking to me as though the conversation was still going.

“Yeah, I got me another dog in the pound,” he said.

“Why’s it in there?” I asked.

“It? It aint no ‘it’. He’s a HE.”


“HE bit someone. They complained to the cops. Asshole.”

I wanted to point out the incorrect grammar, but I also didn’t want the conversation to continue. Although, it would have been pretty satisfying to have a purely verbal argument with a Forest Person over grammar.

So I ran into the woods.

I haven’t seen him since, but I’m worried about his dogs, the asshole, and about seeing him again.

How Dogs Can Help and
Hurt the Dating Process

Dogs are excellent ice-breakers. People with dogs give you an easy excuse to talk to them. However, dog ownership is a vast, complex, and even contentious world. For instance, some people—myself included—have simply accepted that everything in their lives will be peppered with hair, whereas other dog owners still spend many hours lint-rolling their way to self-respect. So below are a few observations that speak to this discrepancy as it relates to dating.

Dogs can help you create an effective online dating profile:

But dogs don’t always help the date itself:

“Now that I have the shedding under control, I can work on the vomit situation.”

Dogs can help create the impression that you have your shit together:

“Despite the horrid ‘thumbs up’ approach, he appears to be at least kind of responsible, which is sadly my current standard.”

But dog ownership does not always guarantee the togetherness of shit:

“Hey after you get that check, wanna come back to my place? My parents are probably asleep by now.”

Dogs can help you meet other dog people:

But dogs do not always help you meet the right kinds of dog people:

“A breeder?! What in the shitballz is wrong with you?! Don’t you know there are literally thousands of dogs needlessly dying in shelters every single day?! What are you, the mayor of Dumbassville?!”

Dogs can help buffer the first half of movie night:

“Good thing Bess is here to fill any possible awkward silence.”

But dogs can ruin the second part of movie night:

“My secret move of pretending to stretch in order to get my arm around her is currently very much impeded. Also I’m pretty sure Bess is gonna start humping her leg in a minute. That’s going to be challenging.”

The End

Fundraiser with Blue Dog Rescue

It’s Sunday, and I’m sitting in my new place of residence after a grueling couple of weeks getting settled. I picked this particular place of residence because (1) it is close to my place of employment and (2) it is close to my place of bike trail:

bike dog trail


Bess is a great appreciator of trails. One might even say she’s a bit of a snob on the subject.

Speaking of Bess, I originally got her from the wonderful folks at Blue Dog Rescue, which is the beneficiary of this month’s Philanthropomorphize fundraiser. Here’s the deal. Throughout September:

  • All of the tees in my shop are only $15
  • $10 of every shirt sold go to Blue Dog Rescue
  • You can get free shipping by entering promo code BDR
  • Everyone will love you if you buy one and I’ll throw in eternal happiness just because you’re looking so nice today

Pretty cool and/or awesome, right?