August 21st, 2005


man’s best friends 1

    Michael first met his best friend Cosmo on their birthday, February 26, 1994. Cosmo, a sixth generation Californian Japanese canine-American, was perched on the hand of his breeder alongside his litter mate. Erin had found the breeder in Riverside. It was her idea to give Michael for his birthday present the very kind of a dog that he regretfully acknowledged lacking in responding to her Usenet personal ad three years earlier.
    Michael knew the name before he met its bearer. Cosmo was to be named in honor of cosmic harmony celebrated by Socrates. He had to commemorate the political conviction of Michael’s father Isaak for rootless cosmopolitanism. A few weeks earlier, Michael and Erin saw a movie based on Ian McEwan’s novel The Cement Garden, whose adolescent protagonist fantasized about a heroic spaceman accompanied by his faithful dog Cosmo. Finally, the proposed name stood proxy for a Japanese euphemism for the male member, with which Michael’s prospective best friend had to be endowed in spades. In a word, it was overdetermined.

    Two weeks later, Erin advertised herself as “young and available in LA” on the Usenet newsgroup Collapse )