Dear Owner (whose name I cannot be bothered to learn),

Quarantine made you lonely, so you adopted me, a fiercely cute puppy to keep you company. You have taken a liking to calling me “Riptide.” Apparently you are a huge fan of Vance Joy and I can be “a lot to handle sometimes.” This abominable name is among several of the things that I cannot and will not tolerate. My demands are simple and reasonable as follows:

1. I will hereby be known as “Mighty Achilles.” I may be a Pomeranian, but I am a descendant of the Gods. My legs are stout, but I can swim like a Chesapeake Bay Retriever and run like a Greyhound. My pluming fur resembles a lion, and that is my closest living relative—the king of the savanna. My power will be respected in your home, and I will be treated as a little God. What is my one weakness you ask? My Achilles heel?

2. Belly rubs. Of which I require 100 daily. If you accidentally touch my “Oh No You Fucking Didn't Spot” beneath my left armpit, I will urinate on the floor.

3. I must never be put on a leash. I will roam and dominate your suburban streets. I will strike fear into the hearts of your weak neighbors and their feeble pets. I will lead and you will follow. Your only role is to pick up the petulant droppings left in my awesome wake.

4. You will wash me with lavender bath scrub and lavender bath scrub only. You must buy the gentle exfoliating kind, or else my sensitive skin will become enflamed and I will sink my sharp and bitter teeth into your ankle.

5. I eat at dawn. As soon as the sun's crescent pierces the horizon I will eat my dog chow. Or else I will go ape shit. Your shoes will be my morning snack and your MacBook Pro will be my puppy-potty-pad.

6. The kibble I eat must be fit for a deity. I demand Blue Buffalo Life Protection Dog Food. I love the taste of the tiny dried chicken in the formula. Unfortunately, Blue Buffalo's patented recipe for “Exquisite Beasts” doesn't sit well with my stomach, but it is the only thing that will satiate my fine tastes. You will clean my vomit with your bare hands as I watch — eager, satisfied, and superior.

7. I am not to be lifted. In fact, you are to stay beneath me at all times. At 7 inches tall, I am considered by your standards quite short, but if you love me you will do as I say. You will crawl around the house in solidarity and admiration of me, your four-legged angel.

8. At bedtime you will bring me to my pedestal, where a silk blanket and satin pillow lie waiting for me. You will sleep beneath my perch as I shut my eyes on Mount Olympus. You will periodically awaken to the sound of my muffled cries. You will sooth me with little kisses and soft scratches as my mind runs riot in the night. What am I dreaming of, you ask?

Control, power, domination, and biscuits. My requests are simple, and I tentatively await your reply.

With solemn love,
Mighty Achilles


And now a quick joke...

Transfers of power more peaceful than the 2020 US presidential election: Steve Harvey announcing Miss Universe; when my dad asks my mom what’s for dinner and she says, “I don’t know, what’d you make?”; Soon Yi going from daughter to wife.