When I feel the need for company, I call up my girlfriends and we’ll go out to one of the dog-friendly coffee shops around the city. My personal favorite is Oslo Coffee Roasters, though it’s a bit of a walk. My friends, Kathrin Abel and Suzie Mason, take the bus with me (and our dogs) to Metropolitan Avenue and walk to Oslo from there.

I always order tea of the day. To other people, I come off as a somewhat prissy lady with a bunch of pampered dogs. I’m well aware of that, and I think it might look strange to my friends if I ordered a triple espresso shot, which is what I really want.

After ordering and stirring in monstrous amounts of cream and sugar, our trio of ladies moves outside, where we sit on a bench, gossipping. I’m not sure I enjoy that part. We don’t really have much to gossip on. We work different jobs and live in different parts of the city, but we’ve been friends since college. Also, though none of us wants to admit it, we’re afraid to branch out, no matter how sick of each other we are. So there we sit, week after week, chattering about our mundane lives and trying to make them exciting.

Hopefully, this week is better. The ladies have never met Patch, and I’m sure there will be a flurry of excitement and perfumed kisses all around him. I’m worried, though, that he won’t be able to handle the attention. He’s clearly not the best-trained dog around. Maybe he’ll behave for the women, but I’m not sure.

Maybe after we’ll do some window-shopping, If Patch is up to it. I hope so.

Until next time, this is Lollipop, signing off!



Oslo Coffee Roasters





I got Archie from an ASPCA animal shelter when he was 4 months old. I was going through a tough time in my life. I had just been laid off my teaching job, and I was worried about what was to come. Suddenly, I recalled one of the many conversations I had enjoyed with Luke Reagan so many years ago.

“If you’re ever feeling lonely,” he said, holding my hand, “Meaning, of course, that you’re without me, you shouldn’t hesitate to get a dog.” I remember distinctly looking at him, confused.

“How did that get brought up?” I asked. We had just been having a playful conversation on birds.

“I dunno, just… I had a rescue dog when I was little and it changed my life.”

“Okay…” I said, tucking the information into a distant corner of my brain where it was promptly forgotten… until I found myself lonely and without Luke twenty years later.

Taking his advice, I rushed to the shelter. The robust woman at the front desk joyfully explained that an entire litter of Havanese puppies had just been brought in from an abusive breeder, and they were ready for adoption.

Without even looking at the puppy I signed the form. I was just that desperate. While I was paying and she was bringing it out, I looked at the form describing Havanese traits and perks. I was astonished to find that it was just the kind I was looking for.

As soon as I saw Archie, of course, I was in love. He looked back and forth from the lady to me, the lady, me, and then bounded over and gave me tiny little laps all across the face. That’s where I got the idea for his name. Archie after the Archie in Riverdale that found it so hard to choose between Betty and Veronica.

Archie smoothed over my rough patch with his affection and caring. Honestly, I don’t know if I could have done it without him. Together, we make an awesome team.

Until next time, this is Lollipop signing off!

Dog Lady


Hey all! My name is Laura Banks, but you can call me Lolly. I’m a 45-year-old New Yorker, originally from Bowling Green, KY, population 64,000. Contrary to the title, this blog is not just about dogs. It’s about my life as a single woman living in the shadow of my perfect sister, Lucinda Reagan. She’s the one who has it all. The husband, the kids, the house… I could rant all day, but I have tons more posts to do just that.
I do have dogs, of course. Three purebred Peluito Havanese dogs, Archie, the oldest, at 8 years old, Sugar, second, at 6, and Patch, the baby, at almost 1. I just got little Patch a week ago, from a dog breeder charging 1,000 dollars a puppy. I wasn’t thinking of getting another dog, as Havanese dogs are high maintenance, but I glanced at a picture of him, and couldn’t take my eyes away. His eyes were shining, his little pink tongue was out, and the tips of his fur were dark brown. I was infatuated and couldn’t help but shell out the money.

He is definitely a handful. He’s wild and energetic, unlike my other two. Why, just this morning he scratched me on the lip because he didn’t get his food on time! Havanese puppies also have a tendency to (urp) eat their stool, and Patch is no exception. I’m trying hard to wean him off that particular habit.

That’s about all there is to report today. Until next time, Lollipop signing off.


A little dog that looks like Patch