Of Rosy the Dog, Flutter the Store, and Taxidermy


You know, for years (14 next month, that’s her birthday) Ray and I have half-joked that we’re going to clone our springer/retriever mix, Rosy.

Rosy is the best dog in the entire world, and if you think I beat myself up over my Bad Mom status, you should hear the inner dialogue over what a crappy pet parent I make, particularly when time is crunched and the two-legged creatures are in line ahead of the four-legged variety.

But I love Rosy. Named for my sacred security blanket (Annabelle Rose is named after both dog and fabric), she is Some Dog, to paraphrase E.B. White.

And she won’t be around much longer, I fear. I only hope Jack the puppy doesn’t make the end of her life miserable. Rosy’s always been a go-along-get-along kind of girl, even when her former companion Elliot (a handsome yellow mutt who succumbed to melanoma — who knew? — years ago) humped her, all day every day, so I’m not too concerned.

With the whole cloning thing still years away, I fear our only option of preservation/continuation will be taxidermy, and I just can’t go there. I’ve started to wonder if perhaps the gods are pointing me that way, though, because damned if I don’t keep tripping over taxidermy.

Or maybe it’s just trendy.

This weekend I opened “Bust” magazine (no big boob jokes, please, I get enough from my children) to a spread about a woman in Minnesota who artistically grafts together, oh, a dead cat and a bird. No words to paint that picture, my friends, so check it out for yourself: www.customcreaturetaxidermy.com

And then there’s Flutter. Music (really great music, music so hip I certainly haven’t heard it) should play in the background, when you hear the name, because this is the freaking coolest store I’ve ever been to, and that’s saying something for a girl who has a horrendous sense of direction — unless it’s in a mall. (Just this past Saturday, when we were not even inside the mall but on a street nearby and I corrected Ray as to which way to turn, he said, “Oh yeah, we’re near the mall. Your sense of direction must be right.”)

Last week my dear friend Laurie drove all the way from Eugene to Portland to take me to this shop on Mississippi Avenue, a funkified street in North Portland.

“YOU WILL DIE,” she kept saying.

Practically. If you love repurposed, deconstructed vintage dresses heavy on the tulle, silk and trimmings, you’ll plotz. Every piece of jewelry (vintage or vintagey or vintagey vintage) was pitch perfect, every rug and pillow and chair begged for my living room. This woman even has carnival chalk, for crying out loud.

I did want to weep. I circled the place, oh, 2 dozen times, and wound up in a fascinating conversation with the owner about how to get my vintage celluloid cabachons to stick to metal.

I was in heaven. I didn’t even mind the taxidermy — the snarling (what is that? a cheetah? a bobcat?) mammal, the turtle, the lizard, the snake. Just typing these things makes my skin crawl, but there I was, stopping to admire rhinestones draped across a reptile.

It’s hard to be too upset about taxidermy when it’s got a velvet ribbon around its neck.

There will be no taxidermying of Rosy, even if that chick in Minnesota agreed to graft the equally aged Izzy (our tiny white cat) onto Rosy’s lap, where she’s been spending most of her time.

Too sad to even consider. Thank goodness for the distraction of retail therapy.



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3 responses to “Of Rosy the Dog, Flutter the Store, and Taxidermy

  1. Really great post. I don’t know Flutter. But that area (N.Mississippi) is just exploding, as you probably saw. Did you happen to eat at Laughing Planet? (located on N. Miss, which is why I ask) –Awesome burrittos. Write more about Portland!

  2. Kathy

    I think that is a taxidermied Chupacabra. Please…somebody hold me…I have to sleep with the light on now!

  3. Kathy

    But wait, did you get anything there? 😀

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