Angela Bocage


“My life is an open comic book…”

I strode into the underground post office in Philadelphia’s Suburban Station, proud of my new get-organized plan: I’d keep up with my  financial obligations by getting all these envelopes together and stamping and addressing them, even writing the checks and sealing them in there, in huge bunches ahead of time! And it was the first day they were selling “forever” stamps! So I stood in line for……some time.

Sometimes I feel like such an asshole.  For very good reasons. For no good reason, in the early 21st Century I dated two psychiatrists in a row.  I bonded with them over common interests unrelated to their profession, and of course their lustful carnal attraction to my tempting self. Both of them, as you’d naturally expect, were crazy. But from one of them I learned about ADD. He had it, and got me to see that I did, too. (You will have observed from the gendered pronoun why there was no good reason for us to date, my being gay as a picnic basket.) I light up the charts like Las Vegas for the ADD diagnostic criteria, as a really good psychiatrist, whom I did not date, confirmed. However, it was clear to me from my acquaintance with Shrinkdate One that most of the attributes of adult ADD, which I have, and which he had, were identical to the attributes of adult assholes. We’re really messy, forgetful, disorganized, and pretty darn irresponsible. My son, however, tells me that according to a book he’s reading, The War of Art (“It’s about resistance, Mom”) ADD wasn’t defined by doctors, but by Big Pharma in search of a syndrome to medicalize the faults of the most people and sell them the drugs to “treat” it. Yeah, let’s give all the irresponsible assholes speed! Make that the irresponsible-assholes-insecure-enough-to-go-along-with-being-medicalized. Today’s a bad tired day, in a bad tired week……

I didn’t write the wonderful summing-up I used as the title of this post; Peter Kuper did, as the epigraph of his graphic memoir Stripped, which I recommend if you’d like to learn more than you imagined possible about liberal middle-class boys coming of age in the ’70s-’80s. It’s funny and sour/sweet and the very epitome of overshare. So when I feel like oversharing,  I remember about how much I used to do that in my comics, oy gevalt, did I ever, and I remember Peter’s epigraph.


Billings, Montana is certainly a fortunate place…

…to have Amanda Thomas, DVM, and Best Friends Animal Hospital and Urgent Care Center. Amanda is my younger sister, of whom I’m inordinately proud to say “my sister the vet,” and was extremely kind recently to a pup she’s never even met, my beloved Berry. Our vet found that the little guy has a heart murmur, which I feared at first had happened because of my homemade food. Amanda has showered me with sound scientific information on canine heart issues, and I was reassured to learn that dogs with such issues may have many active years left (and that my doggie recipes had nothing to do with it, Chin and other small dogs often develop heart murmurs). Our vet is quite terrific as well, but Berry’s follow-up couldn’t happen Friday because of a problem with their x-ray system. So we’re telling His Nibs that he’s to have a “spa day” Thursday with the lovely ladies and gentlemen of Doc Susan’s office, and will know more then about his condition. Til then, we’ll just be serene and give him this delicious anti-inflammatory medicine–don’t even need to hide it in peanut butter. And, again, you rock, Amanda!


The White Dog Cafe (no, this isn’t another pup-cuisine post, it’s a restaurant review!)

Where did I want to go for my birthday dinner? I was so blissed out and floating from my birthday abduction surprise adventure, I almost couldn’t think. [I had been totally surprised to be taken to Red Bank, New Jersey for a pilgrimage and shopping spree at Jay and Silent Bob’s Secret Stash, a comic book store and shrine to the films of its owner, one of our heroes, Kevin Smith, which films include those zeniths of the cinematic art, Clerks II, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, and Dogma.] After the redonkulous fast food sludge I’d been enjoying on my BASA, all I knew was that it had to be healthy! My darling is so sweet…when all I could come up with was the buffet at Whole Foods over in Princeton, she was ever so tactful in suggesting that I rethink.

 It had to be the White Dog Cafe, of course. We’d been there before with friends, and I love the White Dog for its unending visual variety–look, it’s a sepia-tone photo of a flapper lady holding a baby pit bull!–seems like one’s in a different room with a different feeling each time. But they all have in common imagery based on dogs, and as anyone who knows me knows, I find the company of dogs to be one of the best aspects of being alive! 

The White Dog’s philosophy of buying locally and supporting cruelty-free, organic food is something more restaurants should emulate. Its results are varied and delicious! Our waitperson, Lauren, was delightful and attentive and very knowledgeable about the food. And best of all, my carnivorous beloved could rave about the strip steak with onion rings on a bed of mashed potatoes, while I luxuriated in a vegetarian sampler as delicious and varied as it was healthy, and in the awareness that we were supporting a way of bringing food to the table that didn’t harm the earth or mistreat its critters. If you’re in Philadelphia, you must check out the White Dog Cafe!



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