17 August 2010

Day 143: Adaptations

"Jerry and Molly and Sam" by Raymond Carver in Adaptations: From Short Story to Big Screen.*
ISBN: 97814000053148.

So, I kind of debated about how I was going to present this.  Gaiman's work was easy because it was all one author.  This is honestly the best way I could come up with; hopefully it's clear enough.

This particular short story is about a man whose life is starting to fall apart around him.  He's on the verge of losing his job (through no fault of his own), his wife (very much from his fault), and he seems to have no interest in his kids whatsoever.  And then there's this damned dog named Suzy that he hates and wants to get rid of.

Man, can I relate to wanting to get rid of a dog named Suzy (or Suzie in my case, but let's not quibble).  My grandpa had a dog named Suzie, thanks to my brother who had a friend who gave it to him as a Christmas present.  Grandpa told my brother to find a new home for Suzie, but after two months it was too late.  Grandpa not only ended up getting attached to the damned dog, but ended up taking care of her as well.

I didn't really mind that grandpa had a pet.  Yes, he was in his mid 90's when the dog came along, but that man was robust.  I would not have been surprised if he had made it to 100 (as it was he was about 2 years shy).  Unfortunately, Suzie was just a little too hyper for Grandpa, especially considering her massive size at 80 pounds (Grandpa probably weighed slightly more at somewhere around 5'3").  It just seemed like it was a little too much work for a man that old.  But he loved her and I don't think any of us who have dared to try to take her away from Grandpa.  I do wish Suzie had been more the size of a Yorkshire Terrier and about as hyper as a Beagle, but then I think Grandpa would have had less incentive to walk that mile and a half a day which was his habit up until the day he died.

Pets are special, even more so when you have one that everyone else seems to hate.  It's nice to have an animal that you alone love.  It's the one time where possessive love is seen as a positive and healthy thing.  I think that love was very necessary for Grandpa, I just wish it hadn't been that damned dog.

*Film adaptation is Short Cuts (1993).
**Photo is Grandpa's last Christmas in 2008.  Sans Dog.  Sadly I was not there and I lifted this from a cousin's Facebook album.
***Post originally written July 18, 2010 and saved in case of impending Zombocalypse.

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