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Wednesday, January 5, 2011

108th email

From: Oftenbark Borax
To: Stacey Marchenkova
Sent: Saturday July 7th, 1999 21:42 PM
Subject: RE RE RE Stacey here.

Hi Stacey, Oftenbark here. I just heard we’re coming by tomorrow morning. Excellent. I’m really looking forward to it.

And he has no idea that we set this up to see each other, does he? Jeez he’s a putz. Let’s never tell him.

And yes, I do have a favourite treat. I’m quite fond of Choc Drops.


PS and I just finished a reference for you in case you need it in the future. Stand by:

Oftenbark Borax
4/15 Albert Street
West End, Brisbane AUS
Saturday July 17th 1999


To Whom It May Concern:
My Name is Oftenbark Borax. I have known Stacey Marchenkova for only a few months. I know that's not a long time and usually references are written by people that have a longer relationship with the referenced.

But I'm a dog. And in Dog Years, time is different. In Dog years I have known Stacey Marchenkova for a considerably longer duration. So please take this into consideration when reviewing this truly excellent human being for their applied position.

I first met Stacey when she came to dinner one night a few months back.

The guy a live had cooked a mediocre meal. Something Italian, he said. But I know it was more German. It was too controlling. It had anchovies.
And anchovies must be German, right? I mean if any food was going to invade a recipe it would be anchovies don’t you think?

Besides I heard once from a guy at the pub, that Alaric 1st smuggled this recipe in his golden robes when he invaded Rome for the third time.

Anyway, I digress.

Stacey never once complained about this obvious Gothic infused and bludgeoned dish. She ate it all and even offered a small compliment after.

I knew, however, that she was only being polite.

See we shared a moment late in the evening when I lay at her feet and she stroked my stomach with her foot.

It was in this connection that my sixth sense kicked in (by the way I hate that sixth sense can be called Dog sense from foolish ignoramuses that think sixth sense is the exclusive domain of canine – or even worse it’s the pecking bird brigade of uninformed elitists that Maya Angelou so wonderfully suggests could peck you to death with their unintentional insults because they simply don’t understand – hey and by the way did you hear Maya Angelou speak at Clinton’s inauguration? Amazing. But I digress again.)

Back to Stacey –

So Stacey is rubbing my belly and I learn that the meal wasn’t all the successful with Stacey’s digestive system. I and only I could hear the rumbling. But she never made mention of it. She smiled and kept his controlling fascistic ego happy. She even asked for the recipe. What a legend.

So it was with this connection that my regard for Stacey began. See this action displayed empathy and a kindness. No need to be cruel.

And if I was ever in the position of seeking an employee, this would be one of the first qualities I’d look for – see I don’t need to have some assistant telling me I’m lazy, fat and obsessed with walking. I know this already. I’m a self aware dog.

What I need is an assistant that will make my life easier and not be scared to lie every now and then to protect my feelings.

Isn’t that what we all want? Do you hear me God? Isn’t that what we all want? A little lie every now and then wouldn’t go astray. For instance I’d be much happier not knowing about Revelation or the Old Testament for that matter.

Just give me the happy bits with a little more Benji and Lassie narrative-like strands thrown in to keep me a least moderately engaged.

For instance – wouldn’t the Last Supper be far more engaging if it had a dog in it. Don’t you want to go back and think about the story again, huh?

Anyway back to Stacey: from this moment on Stacey and I started emailing each other. Simple at first but again (to iterate) in dog years it has now been going on for six months or so and each email reveals deeper levels of truth.

What I discovered in this discourse is that Stacey is a truly deep thinker. She cares beyond most and indulges others with such patience.

She is funny, hard working and a true team player.

Okay I’m assuming the team player bit. But I know that is an important comment in these references. If it helps, like my God, I will lie for a beat and say that Stacey is such a team player – so much so, that all breeds want her for their team.

I wouldn’t hesitate in recommending her for any job as I am certain she would be a valuable addition to any team.

Please contact me on the above address if you have any further questions.

Oftenbark Borax

PS: And if you don’t hire her never expect any dog to love you unconditionally again. See we all talk. We all talk. Don’t ever forget that.


  1. "We all talk."

    That post script was brilliant.

  2. Kimberley, grrr...back at ya... :)

  3. Zombie, I agree, great line. And I like the connection as we all talk here too.

  4. Nabs, sorry to not respond to Sunday's but what a reposne. The email didn't bounce back!! And I do thank the commenter who suggested that I set up the account as a means of diversion.

    I hate to dissapoint but I'm not that smart. I wish I'd thought of it though. That could have been a whole other story.

  5. I think this reply from Oftenbark confirms my reading of the situation. Good old Dom is not wasting any time and is heading over to see Stacey the following day. Good for him!

    Some interesting tidbits from the 'reference' that show a) what Stacey wrote between the lines and b) that Dom understood them loud and clear

    i) "…not be scared to lie every now and then to protect my feelings."

    Said in reference to Stacey's "though I think Dom is great…but it’s not going to happen between us…not now...he’s got someone…I’ve got someone…timing is out…shame, I know... I’d just hate for you to get your hopes up…"

    ii) "…it has now been going on for six months or so and each email reveals deeper levels of truth."

    Most definitely. Being truthful in matters of love is stressful and hard — it takes epic courage to leave yourself so vulnerable. The Oftenbark 'device' is allowing Dom and Stacey to speak truthfully and openly about themselves, and each other, in a way that's unprecedented in their correspondence thus far.

    iii) "…that all breeds want her for their team."

    Including certain Homo Sapiens that know all this about her too…

    iv) The Postscript

    While you can read the reference in Oftenbark's voice, the postscript screams at me in Dom's own voice. This is Dom at his most vulnerable — Stacey can't fail to see that.

  6. ok, should i be digging into the physical address now too? :D

  7. I think he said he changed the physical address in an earlier comment Nabs. Jamie I applaud your confidence and view of the reading. Although mine is a bit different, I won't divulge but i'm curious as to how the meeting goes... time will tell.

  8. Loved the postscript. Loved it. These make me so happy :)

  9. This is just amazing. Oftenbark providing a character reference for Stacey to Dom! And the postscript, with Oftenbark threatening to dob him in to Elsa, is laugh out loud funny.

  10. Jamie, top notcy reading. I'm truly thrilled to read your subtext. I never read so much into it. But your argument is compelling.

  11. Nabs, very funny. Please go and visit :)

  12. Chris, come on - please divulge - please - your comment is like this blog - it offers a cliffhanger too. Indeed I encourage all commetns to have cliffhangers. The more stories the better.

  13. A Man de Clark, you make me happy too. Love your comments.

  14. Anon (12:49) I agree I think it's a great move by Dom. And Stacey's next it also really good. Stay tuned.


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