Hey there, dog.  You’re a good American dog. You’re obedient, but not too obedient. When I ask you to fetch my slippers, you do it, but you do it in your own individual dog way.

Dog, you chase the mailman for his conformity, but respect him for his civic pride.  You see him in the town parade, and you quietly wag your tail for him.

It’s hard to trust anyone in this country, Dog.  Our senators are divided. Our president is a crook. But Dog, you have to have faith in our system.  It’s not perfect, but what else do we have? You just keep wearing that adorable bandana, Dog. The red, white, and blue one tied around your neck.

You’re a dog who knows it’s tough to be a patriot when he sees all those American boys going off to Saigon.  A dog whose ears perk up when he sees the bright fireworks, but who can’t help thinking about their cost to our nation’s forests and rivers.  You’re thoughtful, and it’s a heavy burden to bear.

You don’t want to bury any more bones, Dog.  You’ve buried a lot of bones.

And sometimes you look at the sky and see the ghosts of a million dogs staring back at you.  But sometimes, Dog, you look up at the sky and imagine you’re looking at one of those Russian satellites, and your gaze reflects off it, landing somewhere deep in Russian territory, into the eyes of a dog not unlike you.  And you imagine him looking back, and you can’t help but think that under God, deep down,  you’re both just dogs.


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