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Athena Scalzi

Who’s A Good Girl?

It’s Charlie! Charlie is a very good girl, and I wanted to share her adorableness with you all!

Having a dog has always been a norm in my life. Kodi was around before I was born, so she was a part of my life right from the beginning. When she died, I felt grief for the first time in my life. I’d never had a loved one die before, and I cried so hard my eyeballs hurt in a way I never knew they could.

It was only a few months later that we got Daisy, so the time in my life spent without a dog in it was relatively short. However, after Daisy died, two years and two months passed before we got Charlie, and the absence of a dog in our happy home was being felt more than ever.

The “clack clack” of paws on hardwood was a sound I didn’t realize I missed so much, until I heard Charlie walking around in her new home for the first time. She only had one home before us, but I can assure you all this will be her last. She’s part of our family now, and I’m so happy she is.

She’s very friendly with other dogs, nice to the cats, adorable and sweet, and pretty quiet and chill. She plays well and is great on walks, and loves being pet. I love her so much already, and I know we have an awesome decade ahead of us with her.

-AMS

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Reader Request Week 2021: Get Your Questions In!

Well, would you look at that: Next week I have nothing on my schedule in terms of writing. You know what that means, don’t you? Yes! I will sleep in until noon all those days! And also, it’s a very fine time for me to do a Reader Request Week.

For those of you who are new to Whatever, the Reader Request Week is the week of the year in which I let you pick the topics for entries. Anything you’ve ever wanted to ask me or to have me expound upon in long(ish) detail? This is the time to ask it. No question too serious or silly that you can’t ask it, and who knows, I may even pick it to answer. Politics, culture, personal positions, ridiculous scenarios, whatever you like — ask away. Post your question in the comment thread, and I will go through the thread and pick the topics I’ll respond to, starting on Monday, March 29, and going through the entire week.

(For the avoidance of doubt, while April 1 falls during the week, I’ll not be doing any “April Fools” stuff here, either relating to Reader Request Week or in general.)

While any topic is up for request, I do have a couple of suggestions for you, when you’re making your topic selections.

1. Quality, not quantity. Rather than thinking of a bunch of general topics for me to address, which isn’t very interesting to me, and which is also like hogging the buffet, pick one very specific topic that you’re actually interested about — something you’ve thought about, and taken time to craft a question that will be interesting to me. I’m much more likely to pick that than look through a menu of very general topics.

2. Writing questions are given a lower priority. Me writing about writing is not unusual here, so for this week, writing topics are a secondary concern. But if you really want to ask a question about writing, go ahead, just remember that point one above will apply more to your question than most. It’ll have to be a pretty good question to stand out.

3. Don’t request topics I’ve recently written about. I’ve included the last five years of Reader Request topics below so you can see which ones are probably not going to be answered again. That said, if you want to ask a follow-up to any of the topics below, that’s perfectly acceptable as a topic. Also, for those of you wondering how to make a request, each of the posts features the request in it, so you can see what’s worked before.

How do you submit requests? The simplest way to do it (and the way I prefer, incidentally) is to put them in the comment thread attached to this entry. But if you have a reason not to want to have your request out in public, the other option is to send me e-mail (put “Reader Request Week” in the subject head so I don’t have to hunt for it).

Please don’t send requests via Twitter or Facebook, since I don’t always see those. I credit those whose topics I write on, but feel free to use a pseudonym if you’re asking something you’d prefer not to have attached to your real name.

Here are topics from the last few years:

From 2016:

Reader Request Week 2016 #1: Living Where I Do
Reader Request Week 2016 #2: Will Humans Survive?
Reader Request Week 2016 #3: How, and If, I Will Be Remembered
Reader Request Week 2016 #4: Autonomous Cars
Reader Request Week 2016 #5: Pronouns
Reader Request Week 2016 #6: Why I Don’t Drink or Use Drugs
Reader Request Week 2016 #7: Writers and Ego
Reader Request Week 2016 #8: STEM and STEAM
Reader Request Week 2016 #9: Short Bits on Writing
Reader Request Week 2016 #10: Small Bits

From 2017:

Reader Request Week 2017 #1: Punching Nazis
Reader Request Week 2017 #2: Those Darn Millennials
Reader Request Week 2017 #3: Utopias
Reader Request Week 2017 #4: Haters and How I Deal With Them
Reader Request Week 2017 #5: Remembering Dreams
Reader Request Week 2017 #6: Reading as Performance
Reader Request Week 2017 #7: Parents, Their Age, and Their Kids
Reader Request Week 2017 #8: The Path to Publication
Reader Request Week 2017 #9: Writery Short Bits
Reader Request Week 2017 #10: Short Bits

From 2018:

Reader Request Week 2018 #1: Incels and Other Misogynists
Reader Request Week 2018 #2: Our Pets and How We Treat Them
Reader Request Week 2018 #3: The Reputational Reset, or Not
Reader Request Week 2018 #4: Far-Left(?) Scalzi
Reader Request Week 2018 #5: Who’s Cool and Who’s Not
Reader Request Week 2018 #6: The Fall(?!?!?!) of Heinlein
Reader Request Week 2018 #7: Mortality
Reader Request Week 2018 #8: Public Speaking
Reader Request Week 2018 #9: Writing Short Bits
Reader Request Week 2018 #10: Short Bits

From 2019:

Reader Request Week 2019 #1: Strange Experiences
Reader Request Week 2019 #2: The War Between the Generations
Reader Request Week 2019 #3: Blogging With Extreme Confidence
Reader Request Week 2019 #4: The Things You Outgrow
Reader Request Week 2019 #5: Civility
Reader Request Week 2019 #6: Being Entertained as an Artist
Reader Request Week 2019 #7: How My Wife Can Stand Me
Reader Request Week 2019 #8: 13-Year-Old Me
Reader Request Week 2019 #9: Writing Short Bits
Reader Request Week 2019 #10: Short Bits

From 2020:

Reader Request Week 2020 #1: Being Politically Persuaded
Reader Request Week 2020 #2: The Hellish Swill I Consume
Reader Request Week 2020 #3: Becoming More Ourselves
Reader Request Week 2020 #4: What It’s Like To Be a Cis Straight Man
Reader Request Week 2020 #5: Me and Sports
Reader Request Week 2020 #6: Pulling Punches in Criticism
Reader Request Week 2020 #7: Cover Songs
Reader Request Week 2020 #8: What It Means to Be Dead
Reader Request Week 2020 #9: Writing Short Bits
Reader Request Week 2020 #10: Short Bits

Got it? Good. Then: Ask me anything you like! Starting now!

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