When I was a young boy, I lived with my mother and my sister on East 93rd Street in Manhattan. We had a dog, a Gordon Setter. Like many setters, he was wire thin when he was young. Concentration camp thin. Gordons are black with brown spots and also like a lot of setters, he was nervous. Some might call it alert, but others would certainly call it neurotic.
That was, of course, before he ballooned out in later years. Imagine a straight piece of uncooked spaghetti transforming into a basketball over the span of a decade. And then there were the ticks. But I'm losing the thread of my story.
My mother once said to me that she'd wished she'd been a little more adventurous with his name. She'd wanted to call him Glenraven Ballachulish, which is actually a place name in Scotland. When I told a school friend about this years later, he just laughed.
The dog had a name: Nat.