I popped into my good friend Hattie Mae’s dreams this week. I wanted to give her my fondest Christmas wishes. Hattie was one the most famous dog models in the world. But she has retired from public life and now lives on her fabulous Virginia estate where she is waited on by her many minions.
During her prime, which spanned more than a decade, the masses anxiously awaited to see what creation Hattie had designed and modeled. One fashion post from Hattie would send the entire dog community abuzz. We simply had to have what she wore.
Until the Christmas Hat.
Hattie debuted the look one December afternoon. She paraded it in front of us and waited for the usual praise. There was stunned silence. Brody broke the tension by blurting “Hattie Mae you look ridiculous.” The diva had never heard a word of criticism in her life. Humiliated she ran off the runway.
Josie told Brody that he should not have been so blunt. “You’re laughing too!” Brody said. Josie put a paw to her mouth to cover her smile.
“We should go talk to her,” Lou said.
Smoochy stood and said he would lead the way
I joined them as we walked down the hallway to her dressing room. We could hear the sound of glass shattering against the wall. Brody knocked on the door and opened it. A vase shattered inches from his face. He shut the door. “She’s busy,” he said sheepishly.
“Don’t be foolish,” Smoochy said. He knocked on the door and entered. Hattie was sitting at her dressing table with her head in her paws.
“I am ruined!” she said.
Josie stepped into the dressing room cautiously. “Don’t be silly Hattie,” she said putting a paw on Hattie’s shoulder. “It is just one design.”
Hattie picked up the hat with her mouth and flung it across the room. “It isn’t even mine. It is from the House of Etsy. I only modeled it because they offered me enough kibble to buy my mom a new sewing machine. She really wanted one. But now I will never work again.”
“You are being overly dramatic,” Smoochy told her. “No one will notice.”
Brody giggled. “The picture I put on Twitter of Hattie’s in her hat has been retweeted 100,000 times.”
We all groaned.
“Ruined!” Hattie Mae said She climbed down and hid under her table.
“You are only ruined if the hats don’t sell and are never seen again,” Lou said. “We all have a following on social networking. If we wear the hats and promote them, I am sure they will become popular, and Hattie Mae’s reputation as a top model will be maintained.”
Brody’s paws were working his phone. “I just ordered five,” he said. “Or fifty, it is hard working an I-Phone without opposable thumbs.”
And that is when we got to work ordering hats and getting our friends to do the same. The hats sold out. Hattie was given all the credit. Her Mom got a new sewing machine, and the wearing of Hattie Mae Hats on Christmas became a tradition that has gone on for years.
Hattie is retired, and several of us who were there that day, namely Smoochy, Brody and myself are at the Bridge, but we gladly wear the hats each year even if we look foolish.
Because looking like a fool is what we do for a friend, especially at Christmas.