“Aussie, they named a food after you, look: Aussie Bites.”

“The only one I bite is Henry the illegal Chihuahua.”

“I think they mean bites of food, and they named them after you!”

“Do they contain steak?”

“Let me see what it says, Auss: Loaded with an assortment of healthy ingredients.”

“Oh oh, that doesn’t sound so good.”

Great source of protein, omega-3 and fiber.”

“Any hamburger meat? Bacon bits?”

“I’m afraid not, Aussie. Rolled oats, dried apricots, flax seeds, sunflower seeds, honey, coconut, quinoa—

“Sounds like one of your dinners! Not even chicken? What about salmon?”

“I don’t see any, Auss. Sure sounds healthy.”

“I don’t want my name associated with anything healthy! They’re trying to commodify me, use my good name to sell healthy dog food. Did I give them permission to do that?”

“I don’t know, Aussie—”

“More important, am I getting paid?”

“I can ask them for 10 years’ supply of Aussie Bites, Aussie. It’s the least they can do.”

“I’ll never live for 10 years if I eat that stuff. I’ve had it with humans! You take your problems—like being fat—and load them on us.”

“Aussie, let’s be honest. You are a little portly.”

“I got anxious when you were gone so I ate more than usual, but that’s no reason to recommend a healthy diet.”

“Wow, Aussie, you are pretty upset. You know what I should get you?”

“A Big Mac?”

“No, an anxiety donut dog bed. It’s a dog bed in the shape of a donut. You lie in the middle—”

“Where the hole would be?”

“There’s no hole in the anxiety donut dog bed, Auss. The whole thing is made from faux fur.”

“You mean fox fur?”

“No, Auss, faux fur. Faux for phony.”

“You want me to sleep in a phony fur bed?”

“It’s supposed to be calming and fluffy.”

“I don’t want to be calm and fluffy.”

“Listen to this, Auss: The anti-anxiety bed creates a sense of security, allowing your dog to enter deep sleep.”

“Holes in the middle of a bed don’t give me a sense of security.”

High quality soft faux fur surface material feels like mommy’s fur—”

“My mommy didn’t have phony fur!”

“—and helps them to calm down faster, ease anxiety, and sleep well. Keeps your dog calm and relaxed.”

“Now I’m getting upset.”

“Maybe I should order that bed for—”.

“Just thinking about an anxiety bed makes me anxious! I don’t want to be calm! I don’t want to relax! Besides, my anxiety began when you were gone. What took you so long to come back?”

“My mother got sick, then died, Aussie, and then we did shiva.”

“What’s shiva?”

Shiva literally means seven, Aussie. It’s hard work. You sit for seven days, morning to night, and the whole community comes by to talk about your mother. They cook meals for you, bring drinks and snacks—”

“That’s hard work?”

“Aussie, I wasn’t even allowed to get myself a glass of water or clear the table. The minute someone saw me get up to do something they’d tell me to sit down, they’ll do it.”

“Forget the anxiety bed, I’d like to do a shiva for my anxiety.”

“For 7 days?”

“No, 7 years.”

“Aussie, someone close to you has to die for you to do a shiva.”

“Let’s kill Henry.”

“Aussie, you can’t kill Henry and then mourn him in a shiva. It’s hypocritical.”

“We’ll honor him, we’ll tell everyone to bring tamales.”

“Aussie, Aussie, Aussie!”

“What? What? What? Now I’m getting anxious again.”

“You want me to get you the anti-anxiety donut bed?”

“No, just the donut, thanks.”

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