The Dog in the Hat: A Christmas Story

My father is the impossible-to-shop-for member of my family, but this Christmas the gift he has been dreaming of for years will await him under the tree.

Although my mother may find its scent pas à son goût, for him it will evoke Proustian memories redolent of happy days spent in the company of his friend, Chester. Sadly, Chester died of cancer suddenly the summer before last, leaving dad devastated. His friend was not human, but he might as well have been: My father can distinguish between a person and a dog—in this instance it was a golden retriever—but he chooses to ignore the difference.

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