What Aussie does when it rains

“I don’t like the name Aussie.”

“Aussie, Bernie called you that. He chose you in the shelter and he named you once we brought you home.”

“He only had to live with Aussie for 45 days before he died. Me, I have to live with it forever. How about Gwendolyn?”

“Give me a break.”


“Come on, Auss.”

“And that’s another thing. I hate it when you shorten Aussie to Auss. That’s the trouble with these names, you never know what others will do with them. You could shorten Auss even more, just take out the u and what do you got?”

“I never thought of that, Auss.”

“Now, if you called me Gwendolyn, you could shorten it to Gwen, or Lynn. And if you called me Genevieve it could be Jen, or Viv, or even Viva. Anything’s better than Auss. Auss sounds like horse. I’m not a horse.”

“Auss, I mean Aussie, you know how you like to disappear when we take walks in the woods, and I have to walk around yelling ‘Aussie—come!’ a dozen times at the top of my lungs? Now you want me to walk around and yell ‘Genevieve—come! Genevieve-come!’ as loud as possible?”

“No, you say ‘Genevieve—vien! Vien, Genevieve!’”

“Bernie called you Aussie. He was from Brooklyn. He probably never heard of Genevieve.”

“It’s not fair to be given a name when you’re young, especially when you’re just born, and you have no say in the matter. Imagine you get a name like Blinken or—”

“That’s our Secretary of State.”

“No wonder we get no respect. Or a name like Begonia. How does any self-respecting dog live with a name like Begonia? I hate flowers.”

Buttercup? Primrose?”

“I’m vomiting my supper. But when you’re a pup there’s nothing you can do. You can’t object if they call you Frangipani even though you’re the one who has to live with Frangipani for the rest of your life!”

“Oh Aussie, what’s in a name?”

“Everything’s in a name! When people first meet me, they get down on their knees, which is always a good start, stretch out their hand, and what do they ask you?”

“What’s her name.”


“They want to know what to call you, how to get your attention, Auss.”

“If they take out a treat, they got my attention. If they call me Aussie, I turn my back on them.”

“So, are you saying you want another name?”

“I want to have some control over my life. The name’s just a pimple on Henry’s nose, which doesn’t need enhancement. I NEED CONTROL OVER MY LIFE! It starts with the right name.”

“Like what?”

Alexander. Caesar. Zeus. Nobody messes with someone called Zeus.”

“Aussie, those are men’s names and you’re a female.”

“You’re a cissexist.”

“I can’t even pronounce the word. Another question to you, Aussie. Why do you chase after animals if you’re not going to eat them?”

“If they run, I chase. The rest is all mathematics.”

“What mathematics?”

“Suppose x is the rate of speed when I chase them, and y is their rate of speed when they run. If x is greater than y, they’re dead. If y is greater than x, they’re not. Thank God for algebra, I wouldn’t know how to hunt otherwise.”

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