Two of the New York Times’ hyper local sites have new dog columns.
The East Village has Dog Diary, which is narrated in the voice of a dog. There has only been one entry so far. For this, I’m kind of glad. Call me boring, but I like to read things by humans, not by dogs. Dogs don’t write well, and humans impersonating dogs are merely debasing themselves.
Hypocrite I may be: I often voice my dog’s thoughts aloud. Sometimes, I even give voice to other people’s dog’s inner monologues. But, with the exception of the occasional birthday card, I don’t write these words down for others to read. It’s bad enough that others have to listen to me. I don’t need to make their eyeballs work, too. Especially if it means my audience’s eyeballs will be seeing the words on the Internet–if you’re looking at a screen, there are so many better things you could be reading than dog prose.
Interesting how the photo credit breaks from first person. It suggests that a human might have actually written the whole thing. The veil is lifted! Imagine: Humans! Writing for a New York Times blog! I bet you they get paid in Milkbones.
I don’t mean to be unfair: there have been occasional instances of interesting pieces of literature written from the point of view of a dog, and I’m always interested in hearing about the better entries in that cannon. But most of those offerings do not contain as many exclamation points as the above.
If this were a pet blog throw down, I’d put my bets on The Local’s Animals Among Us column, part of the Times’ Fort Greene/Clinton Hill blog. They’ve been doing a lovely job of highlighting local area pets. They feature dogs (and cats) in need of homes, post alerts about missing pets, and include cute little ditties about local dogs and their owners. Sweet pictures of dogs, funny quotes from humans. Two paws up! The pieces aren’t signed, but again, my eye goes to the photo credit: the photographer is longtime NYC-based journalist Gersh Kuntzman, a fellow veteran of The New York Post. So, I’m guessing he’s behind this fun column.
Want to know what my dog Amos thinks of the column? He thinks… Just kidding! Dear reader, I wouldn’t do that to you. But if you want to know, I’ll tell you if I see you.
If any one has a dog narrated book that they’d like to recommend, please share it in the comments.
Featured image by William Wegman.