This isn't going to be a depressing post though. My sadness is for me and I don't want to share it. It keeps me warm at night when I miss her cuddles.
Instead, I thought I would tell you something about Roberta so you would know how much better a dog she was than any other you've met.
I thought I might tell you the story about how she once pooped on the floor of the President of the William Morris Agency's office. She was that unimpressed by him.
There was also the time Roberta helped herself to 15 mini Reece's Peanut Butter cups while we were visiting friends in San Francisco. Instead of needing to be rushed to the vet, however, Roberta digested them with nary a concern and went on to eat more from a stash she had hidden underneath our guest room pillows; proving that day, she was in fact, unbreakable.
She'd been to The White House. She'd been a street walker in Long Beach. She'd made a Bull Mastiff, with at least 100 pounds on her, cry. She was an indomitable spirit so picking just one story proved difficult.
At the end of the day though, I've decided to tell you about the time Roberta got herself an airline upgrade without any miles or having to pay an extra fee.
We all have those friends who seem to be able to charm their way into anything. They get reservations at the best restaurants even though it was supposed to be booked through May. They always get invited to go back stage during a concert and actually end up bonding with the singers in a real and meaningful way. They charm their kids' way into top rated public schools that are supposed to be completely filled up for the next five years with simply a wink and a smile. Well, Roberta was one of those kinds of people, despite being a dog.
It didn't hurt that at 8 pounds, with snow white hair and and a bell shaped fur-tattoo on her butt, she was one of the cutest little dogs you've ever seen. She had long legs, a big chest, and a tiny waist and thus was dubbed, by those who knew her, The Supermodel.
So you can well imagine her indignation when traveling by air, at having to be put in a bag. It was just not something she stood for. FAA regulations being what they were, we always had to start a flight from inside her bag, but before long, Roberta would entrance the plane's staff and she would find herself comfortably on my lap being offered bacon from the business class' BLT sandwiches. It had been this way all of Roberta's life until one fateful flight where the flight attendant either had sand in her vagina and thus wanted to make everyone as miserable as she was or she -- nah, it was probably just the sandy vagina thing. Anyway, despite Roberta's best efforts to garner a sanctioned freedom from her travel bag this "woman" wouldn't let her ride in my lap.
Roberta did her best to bare it like a lady but ultimately she realized that this was the flight attendant's problem, not hers, and she exited the bag. Not wanting to get me in trouble - Roberta was always looking out for my well being - she didn't make a fuss about it, no barking or biting or any other uncouth doggy display. She simply used her nose to open the zipper of the bag and, while still under the seat in front of me, walked out.
She walked through the feet of the passengers in front of me who were most likely startled to see an 8 pound dog sashaying amongst their shoes while flying the Red Eye to New York. Probably because they'd never seen such a cute dog. She made her way through the aisles of coach, and business class, and into first class. Now, I didn't have a ticket to be in first class and since the flight attendants, as previously mentioned, were being such hard asses, I was not able to go up there and join in her fun. I imagine, however, it was much like when when Adam Sandler's character in the Wedding Singer finds himself in first class. She likely befriended Billy Idol, enjoyed the courtesy champagne, and enthralled them all with tails of the constipated sky-waitress in coach who tried to rain on her parade. She was well known for her impersonations of Nina Simone and Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg, so she probably also entertained the cabin with those as well.
Conscious that I had spent the bulk of the flight in coach amongst the rabble and not wanting to make me jealous, I never heard the full story of her capers that evening. I can't even say how long she was up there. All I know is when I finally spotted her coming back down the aisle toward my seat, she had honey-roasted peanut crumbs on her chin and a slight sway in her gate, as though she'd had at least one too many Bellinis.
Roberta Sue was The Hope Diamond amongst piles of coal. She was an hilariously inappropriate joke told at The Met Ball Gala. She was cocktails on the coast and shopping in Beverly Hills. She was my friend.
Roberta Sue only hours before my wedding being coaxed from her sick bed with a cup of Pepto.
She may have had too many martinis at the rehearsal dinner the night before or wanted to make sure the day was still about her.
Either way, so Roberta.