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978-0-14-016682-8 / 0140166823

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About the book:

Merrill Markoe, the creator of "Stupid Pet Tricks," won four Emmy awards for her work on the David Letterman show. In these sidesplitting essays--from "The Wacky World of Men" to "An Insider's Guide to the American Woman" to "Showering with Your Dog"--she reveals what she's learned about life from "dogs, celebrities, bachelors, and other beasts."

In Markoe's words, "I pick dogs that remind me of myself--scrappy, mutt-faced, with a hint of mange. People look for a reflection of their own personalities or the person they dream of being in the eyes of an animal companion. That is the reason I sometimes look into the face of my dog Stan and see wistful sadness and existential angst, when all he is actually doing is slowly scanning the ceiling for flies."

Following a collection of sparkling chapters on cultural phenomena--from the "Creeping Gabor Syndrome" (the terror of turning into Zsa Zsa Gabor) to what happens to you when you live alone (and the eight things you can do because there's no one there to stop you)--the last chapter outlines the many lessons Markoe has learned from her dogs: "If you see something you want, and all your other attempts at getting it have failed, it is only right to grovel shamelessly. As a second tactic, stare intently at the object of your desire, allowing long gelatinous drools to leak like icicles from your lips."

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