What We Learned From Marley & Me


The Dancer, friend of all animals, wanted a date with Dad. And off we went to see the flicka that is making moviegoers cry across America.

She was one of the five million who read the book and wanted more.

Here’s what we learned, as the 22 doggie-double Marleys gnawed their way across 15 years.

Yes, it is a dog story and no humans were hurt in the filming. But the lessons were made for the alphas in us all.

shadrach_yoest_dog_german_shepard_1995.png1) A dog is as much cost and effort as a child. Your Business Blogger(R) had a tamer Marley-like hundred pound German Shepherd: Shadrach, The Dog Genius, who chewed his way thru four houses. Shepherding our first two children. Dogs add more than they subtract. The shaggy dog is the origin of fuzzy math.

The Dreamer and The Dude at Shadrach’s last Christmas, 1995

2) Dogs are a cost-center not a profit-center: a consumer of resources. But the indoor animals (with outdoor voices) generate enough goodwill to be an asset that doesn’t need to be sold to be realized or appreciated. A lot like children.

3) The domestic animals do not always produce domestic tranquility. Until housebroken. Just as, Charmaine would say, husbands.

4) Moms and Dads always cry after a miscarriage. There’s one in the movie. If you are Pro-Choice you have our permission not to look at the sonogram. Then again, go ahead. There was no heartbeat. One pregnancy in five miscarries. One woman in four has an abortion. There is a lot of crying in America, and it’s not only over a dog in the Marley & Me movie.

5) Funerals are for the living. As Yogi Berra said, “Always go to other people’s funerals, otherwise they won’t come to yours.” There must be closure for the living over the dead. A miscarriage needs closure. An abortion needs closure. Too bad the Pro-Choice community insists that abortion is a private matter. Women (and the dads) would heal quicker with some remembrance of what was. What could have been. Funerals provide the venue for a good cry. Like dog movies.

Go read the book. Go see the movie. Take a date.

Even if you don’t need a reason to cry.


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3 Responses

  1. Demaris says:

    Jack & Charmaine:

    Perhaps you might have advised, “Go see the movie, but don’t take your young children.”

    We think this movie should have been PG-13.


  2. Jack Yoest says:

    Dr. Demaris, you might be on to something on Marley and Me.

    The movie has no bad words or sex.

    But the movie does have adult themes. Which can be just as disturbing to children as chainsaw bloodletting or orgies.

    Dead dogs make everyone hurt.


    Jack (and Charmaine)

  3. cf says:

    judging by the box office, it looks like Jennifer Aniston is giving Brad Pitt a run for his money…