(an appropriate headline following the above title, eh?)
It was a huge gathering. Three generations of the [redacted] and [redacted] families showed up at the [redacted] Ranch in Tracy, California for a Thanksgiving dinner. According to Jeannie, the host, it was "probably the biggest group of people we've ever had for Thanksgiving in this house."
Everyone got a chance to ride one of the three horses at the ranch. Not everyone took that chance. But, hey, at least the opportunity was there.
John barbecued a turkey—a live one, right there in front of everyone! "It was delicious," said Lucy, who of course was the one who actually captured and skinned the bird as it attempted to cross the property. You know how she is.
Doug was attacked by one of Lucy's professionally-trained attack dogs. Lucy said the dog was just playing. Witnesses, however, distinctly remember hearing Lucy say "Sic him!" (See interview, next page.) Greg and June stole Tiffany's dog.
Jeannie telephoned Don, Diane and Bill in Tennessee, just so everyone could talk to them. "We were expecting you to call us," Jeannie explained. "But, since you didn't, we called you."
"Yeah, I noticed," said Bill. "And I really wish you'd stop calling. Who are you, anyway?"
TRACY, CA — After a full day of stuffing their faces and riding horses, Greg, June and kids packed up their minivan for the long drive back to Santa Ana. About an hour south of the [redacted]'s, Aileen, Brian and Andy — the aforementioned "kids" — announced that there was a strange dog in the car. It was a young female German Shepherd, and her tag said her name was "Cedar."
The kids had spotted Cedar as soon as they got in the car, of course. However, it wasn't until after they had discussed it amongst themselves and exhausted all possible explanations as to how the dog got there that they decided to let their parents in on their little secret.
Upon being asked where he thought the dog might have come from, Greg said: "Dog? What dog?" June's reply to the same question was: "I don't know. Hasn't she been in the car ever since we left Santa Ana?"
"I'm pretty sure she hasn't," said Greg.
"Well then what was all that howling on the way up here?"
"That was the kids."
And so, since no one could figure out how or why Cedar was in the car, they decided to keep her. And they all lived happily ever after.
LIVINGSTON, CA — As predicted in our previous issue, Lucy's dog Credence did have that litter of puppies. Three boys and two girls. And you know what that means. Now we have to name the little mugwumps.
This is Nightshadow Kennels' sixth, or "F," litter. You know the rules. All names have to start with the letter "F." It will be difficult coming up with names that can be printed in a Family Newsletter, but we'll try.
So far, Lucy's only come up with one name: Freak of Nature. Here's what we've come up with: Frank; Fontelroy; Fondaloolupdud; Foul-Mouthed Bastard [hey, we said it would be difficult]; Frequent Flyer; Freakazoid; Future Boy; Frankly-My-Dear-I-Don't-Give-A-Flying-[censored]; and Fahrvergnügen. Fahrvergnügen, of course, will most likely not be used since that's the nickname Lucy uses for her German Shepherds.
TRACY, CA — In an obvious attempt to get herself in the newsletter, Jeannie has gone and crashed her car. Tiffany was in the passenger seat, and that's the side of the car that was hit when an uninsured motorist running a red light broad-sided them. Luckily, no one was hurt.
Jeannie and Tiffany promptly checked in with the chiropractor, Dr. Calloway, Diane's mentor, in Brentwood. Preliminary tests indicated of course that both Jeannie and Tiffany are certifiably insane. However, they are "just fine" physically. And that's the important thing.
NASHVILLE, TN — Yeah, sure. They don't even have alligators in Tennessee. If they did, of course, Bill would be wrestling them on a regular basis.
NASHVILLE, TN — Don and Diane have resorted to guns to keep their cats in line. "Well, they kept scratching the furniture," Diane explained. "So, naturally, we bought a couple of squirt guns."
[A horrible thing happened this past Thanksgiving. Doug was attacked by a dog. That's not the horrible thing, though. The horrible thing was that the party ran out of Colombian coffee and ... Oh, excuse me. It seems the dog attack was the horrible thing. Let's hear from an eye witness.]
[And so ends another newsletter interview. Doug, by the way, is fine. He has filed a lawsuit against this newsletter, however. According to the suit, the newsletter sent him out on a "dangerous assignment without proper protection." He doesn't stand a chance of winning the lawsuit, though. Everyone knows, or should know, that these days a man should always wear protection. It's not up to us to tell him.]
[Yes, we know we mentioned Jeannies's birthday in the previous newsletter. It's just that her birthday is so very important, you see, and we felt the need to mention it again. Yeah, that's it. And for those of you wondering who "Renee" is, she's a friend of the editor. And since we reprinted part of her letter in "Letters to the Editor," we figured we should also mention her birthday.]
"That was a good newsletter. Do people subscribe to it and you send it out to them, or what?" — Renee, Los Angeles
[I guess you could say people "subscribe" to it. They're on our mailing list, anyway. But, you know how most people pay for the things they subscribe to? Well, the only money we've ever gotten was from people wanting to be taken off the mailing list.]
"Hey, it was a great newsletter! I can see you searched high and low for material — even to the point of reading insurance forms! Actually, that was one of the more newsworthy articles. Of course, the "Cat Missing" story was also good. I can see that you shrewdly set yourself up for a tabloid-style story about what the cat was doing that caused it to sleep for 36 hours straight. — Greg, Santa Ana
[Quite frankly, Greg (assuming that's your real name), we're insulted by your implication that we would stoop to 'tabloid-style' journalism! We like to think we employ only the finest journalism techniques. Sure, we could speculate, but we just don't do that sort of thing here!]