July 10, 2017: Behind the scenes of a Suji photo shoot!

Suji, our twelve year old special needs senior pug, is inching towards 10k followers on instagram .  Her surprising popularity is a testament to both the little lady herself AND my girlfriend Akemi who is constantly posing and photographing her anywhere and everywhere in search of the just the perfect pic.  Like –

And –

And –

But the truth is there are unsung heroes who work behind the scenes of these photo shoots, sacrificing time and comfort to help secure that one-of-a-kind picture. Not to make this all about me, but I’m referring to me.  I’m usually the guy walking her toward camera or in the background trying to get Suji’s attention so she can face the proper direction or footing the bill for those cappuccinos so she can wear the lid like a hat.

Or locking my elbows so that I can holding her straight up in the air for thirty seconds at a time as the sun beats down on my face…

Awww.  What a great picture of Suji in the garden.

Perfectly edited to crop out visual distractions.

Can we just take a moment here?  FYI, that grimace is a response to a combination of weary shoulders and burning retinas.

And to top it all off her, contract includes a clause that requires her to be hand-fed at all meals!  Just like Anthony Lemke!!!

May 1, 2017: Happy Birthday, Suji!

Our girl turned 12 today (even though she looks 20!).

Her other life.  This was the pic on the Pacific Pug Rescue adoption page.

We quickly discovered she was a little girl with a big personality.

Yo, Four-Eyes!

Handle with care!

On the bridge of The Raza, taking her to FTL.

Running The Raza corridors.

Next week on a new season of The Bachelorette…

We can do it!

French bulldog undercover.

She and Bubba were like an old married couple.  Pictured above, holding hands.

Working on her tan with Lulu.

Sujipillar.

Toting her snack-packed backpack.

Oh my!

Stylin’.

Looking gangsta!

In her jammy-jams.

Here’s to another 12!

April 1, 2017: Dedicated to the Dogs!

We received the retouched selects from our family photo session at Off Leash Studio.  Some great shots of 11 year old Suji, 9 year old Lulu and, of course 14.5 year old Bubba taken the week before he passed away.

This is one of my favorites.  Note Lulu actually smiling for the pic.

Suji and her classic “What’s up?” look.

Suji and her wheels.

Our dignified older man.

Lulu says “Whatever!”.

She has a way of melting your heart.

Suji demonstrates her earthquake-preparedness stance.

Bubba shaking it up.

He looks like he’s still a puppy!

Ready to go on vacation.

Like an old married couple.

And a rare family pic.

March 17, 2017: Bubba

He was supposed to be a present for my ex’s brother but, after having him for two weeks, I decided to keep him and got  her brother a toaster oven instead. 

He was unlike my other two pugs at the time.  Whereas Jelly was a bossy bitch and Maximus a laid back lover, Bubba was a furry ball of anxiety, easily spooked by cyclists and skateboards, wary of strangers, parking entrances, and animatronic Christmas decorations.  He was, quite simply, a goof.

And yet, despite his adorable stiff-legged gait and furrowed brow that seemed to hint at some perpetual deep-seeded worries, he was never the one people were drawn to when they met the pack.  It was either Jelly or Maximus or, later, Lulu who would get all the attention while Bubba would warily hang back, hesitant to commit, his tail doing a slow noncommittal wag as he surveyed the situation.

It wouldn’t be uncommon for him to seek out the relative remote security of the laundry hamper, his toy box, the tiniest dog bed in the house.

He was in many ways a wallflower, the highschool equivalent of an outcast nerd – always self-conscious, always awkward.  But always happy.

And then, Akemi joined the family.  She’d never had much experience with dogs back in Japan but in short time, she and Bubba hit it off.  And over the next seven years, they developed a bond that would rival any relationship, human or otherwise.

She doted on him and he grew infatuated with her.  In time, they became inseparable.  I’d come home from work to find him sitting on her lap while she surfed the net, or parked comfortably beside her while she watched t.v.  He would sit by her feet whenever she cooked and nothing would make him happier than to join her on their extended walks, just the two of them, strolling for blocks on end.

When my television series, Dark Matter, was picked up, I granted Bubba a certain immortality by naming THREE’s big-ass gun after him.  Larger than life, unwieldy, sometimes comical – it was the perfect tribute.

In his later years, he lost his hearing and his ability to hop up to claim his favorite spot perched atop the living room couch, but he never slowed down – unless he sensed a walk was coming to an end in which case he’d draw out that final block for all he was worth.

Nothing made Akemi prouder than to have passersby mistake him for a puppy.  At the time, it seemed he would live forever.  Or, at least, close to.

When he developed a growth near his ear, we had it checked out and then, erring on the side of caution, had it surgically removed.  The tumor, it turned out, was cancerous. Months later, when Bubba developed a cough, we had x-rays taken. They came back all clear.  We ran further tests.  He was diagnosed with bronchitis and given antibiotics.

But even though the cough seemed to get better, it never really left.  And then, suddenly, a couple of months ago, it worsened.  To the point that we brought him in again.  This time, x-rays showed abnormalities in his lungs.  What at first was suspected to be an enlarged heart turned out to be lung cancer.

In his last months, perhaps sensing his time was limited, Bubba grew even more attached to Akemi, following her around the apartment, crying when he would lose sight of her.  He was at his happiest, as always, seated on her lap or right beside her, the feel of her reassuring hand on him.

We tried various treatments to save him, from acupuncture and astragalus to Palladia and Prednisone.  None of them had any effect.  X-rays taken two weeks later showed his situation had worsened.  But we never gave up hope.  And, I like to think that neither did Bubba.  Until yesterday.

His coughing worsened and his breathing grew more labored.  He stopped eating and could barely support himself.  I was at work when I received the text from Akemi.  It was time.

I drove back home, picked them up, and traveled to the 24 hour emergency clinic (twice actually because I realized I’d forgotten my wallet the first time).  There, late last night, we said goodbye to our goofy, needy, happy, wonderful boy.

I hope that somehow, somewhere out there, that old pug gang of mine has been reunited

March 11, 2017: The Bubba Update

Sadly, it isn’t good news for our boy.  A follow-up with our oncologist revealed that the tumors in his lungs have grown since our last visit one month ago.  As a result, she suggested we discontinue the Palladia treatment and focus on making the most of the time he has left.

We’ll continue administering the Prednisone which will, hopefully, make him more comfortable.  Otherwise, we’ll be going homeopathic – mushrooms, Chinese herbs, turmeric, and goat’s milk – in the longshot hope that something may help.

We’ll also continue with his acupuncture sessions – although I’m dubious about their efficacy.  I didn’t really notice a change in him after the first two appointments but am willing to demonstrate a little patience, only because we DID see some surprising results with Jelly years ago.

Some days he’s down – sleeping mostly, eating reluctantly, disinterested in engaging.  Other days, it’s almost as if he’s back to his old self again – eating voraciously,  barking loudly to convey his displeasure with the pace of the meal preparation or our impertinence in actually going out without him.

He’s still up for his walks and is always excited to go out, but he has slowed own considerably.  It’s hard to believe that, less than six months ago, neighbors and passersby were commenting on how spry and puppy-like he seemed for a senior. Now, it’s a slow stroll to park and back.  It’s particularly heartbreaking for Akemi who has been his constant companion and champion these many years.  She has taken to wearing sunglasses on their daily outings in the event she starts feeling emotional.

They’ve really been inseparable these past seven years and have formed a special bond.   Now, as he grows needier, it isn’t uncommon for him to climb upstairs (a Herculean feat for his old bones) to look for her or wander about anxiously when she’s not home.

Tomorrow, at Akemi’s request, we’ll be attending our own gallery shoot at a local photo studio.

I guarantee I won’t be the only one dressed up for the occasion.

January 18, 2017: Dark Matter Season 3 – Day 34 of 91!

Fandom has spoken!  Here are the results of our Name Dark Matter Episode 301 poll.

Over 600 votes were cast and the winner is…

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“Being Better Is So Much Harder”

Now the next thing I’m going to need you to do is identify which character said each of the aforementioned lines.  First one to guess all three correctly gets…something!

So, the Canadian Screen Awards nominees were announced yesterday and, for the second year in a row, Dark Matter failed to receive a nomination in the VFX category.  Here’s why I found this totally baffling (make sure to watch in HD):

Suji’s instagram account is blowing up!  Head on over and invest in Sujiko Co.

https://www.instagram.com/newoldpugsuji/

Don’t miss out on this once in a lifetime opportunity!

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She’s dressed as Rerun from What’s Happening!

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Contemplating life.  And the toy.

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Playtime is exhausting.

January 11, 2017: Dark Matter Season 3 – Day 29 of 91!

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What’s this?  Could I have finally given in and granted Jodelle Ferland’s request for a shipboard mascot.

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Director of Photography test tastes the commissary offerings.  Space beer!

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Laying some track for the commissary walk ‘n talk.

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The masterful work of Dark Matter Production Designer Ian Brock and his teams – art and construction departments.

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The early bird catches the wait.  Zoie Palmer arrives on time for the production meeting.  Rookie mistake!

Munitions factory safety graphics by 1st Assistant Art Director Sumeet Vats and 2nd Assistant Art Director Victor Mare.

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 TASTYFACE!!!

December 18, 2016: Suji and Secrets!

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In a matter of days, we’ll be in Montreal and my mother’s house will come alive with the pitter patter of little paws – roughly thirty-two in all not counting the feline variety.  In preparation, we’re shopping, gift-wrapping, packing, and bathing…

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Suji deserved the spa treatment after a thoroughly exhausting afternoon at Trinity Bellwoods Park for the monthly pug grumble.  Last month, the turnout was good with approximately thirty pugs showing.  Today’s turnout was…er…significantly less so.  The bone chilling weather may have had something to do with it.

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Despite being bundled up, Suji has some second thoughts about this Canadian winter.  Pictured above, this is her “Get me back to that warm barn in Portland!” face.

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Double-bundled for her enjoyment – and yours!

So, tomorrow, we’ll load up the car with gifts, windshield washer fluid, and that outline for my next script.  The plan is to celebrate Christmas with the family AND get two acts into my new script.  Secrets will be revealed.  And some characters are going to wish they hadn’t been.

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The man with all the secrets.

December 17, 2016: Suji enters rehab!

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Yes, years of hard living have taken their toll.    So, today, Suji entered rehab…

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First, a little test of those gimpy hindquarters.  Yes, they’re weak and she suffers from hip dysplasia, but she can really motor when she gets up a full head of steam.

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Into the tank for her hydrotherapy session.  The handle atop her little red life vest gave her the appearance of pug luggage.

Off to a slow start but, by the end of the session, she was positively motoring.

Then, it was time for her laser therapy.

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Doggles?  Check!

We concluded things with her daily carpet run.

December 12, 2016: Dark Matter Season 3 – Day 17 of 91!

Boy, I’m not one to get all emotional, but Facebook 2016’s Year in Review video really took me back –

To last month when I uploaded most of those photos.

Ah, I remember that cast dinner like it was November.  And that random photo of Roger Cross I uploaded to accompany his Q&A less than a week ago really stirs those distant memories.  And that shot I took seven days ago of actress Torri Higginson (Dark Matter’s Commander Truffault) giving the camera both barrels. Time flies like an arrow, shot into a target from two feet away…

Remembrances of things past drift by as elusive and fleeting as a child’s cigar smoke, instances from a time long ago… November 26th – Akemi and Jodelle sitting at the chocolate shop, November 28th – Director Bruce McDonald sitting in a prep meeting for the episode he’s presently shooting, November 15th (!) – Jodelle in my office!  It’s like seeing your entire life flash before your eyes, provided you’re a month old infant.

But I can’t get hung on the past.  After all, I’ve got a show to make!

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Testing, testing, one, two, three!  Drew Williams and Rachelle Audet with the early morning sound check.

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It’s the new-look airlock for the Ishida research station.

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Right through these doors, adventure awaits!

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At this point, do you even need to be told?

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Script Supervisor Brad Wetherly follows up Friday’s suit and tie look with Monday’s Mickey Mouse Club look.

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It is COLD in our second stage.  How cold?  So cold that street urchins come in off the streets to warm themselves by our tiny heaters.

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Remember the mag-lev concept?

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Well here it is in all of its beatdown glory.  Wait until you see it in action!

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Thanks to everyone who inquired about Suji.  As we suspected, she was suffering from a bladder infection but is now on antibiotics and has improved considerably.

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Bath time!  Whereas Bubba and Lulu do the tub, Suji is more of a kitchen sink bather.

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Her after-bath outfit.  Toasty warm.

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On Sunday, she and Bubba went out for a stroll – first to the park, then by the pet shop for some browsing.

Ironically, our sole purchase was for Lulu.  New boots!  Lookit her go!

Graceful, no?

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When Suji’s tired, she’ll simply burrow under a blanket and go to sleep.  Lights out!

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Poor Bubba.  Now there’s one more girl in the house to boss him around.

This is your last chance to get your questions in for Dark Matter director Ron Murphy!  Any questions submitted after midnight tonight will be subject to heavy fines and penalties.

December 10, 2016: Contest winner!

Early in November, I held a little contest on this blog, asking fans to directly identify two props featured in Dark Matter’s second season.  Then, we rolled into production and I forgot to announce the winner.  And so, better late than never, the winner of the cast-signed script who correctly identified the props – and the episodes in which they appeared is…

ceresis64!

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Prop 1 – An emergency beacon that Chief Inspector Kierkan shows Four when he’s talking to him, when trapped under the rubble in Ep 205 We Voted Not To Space You.

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Prop 2 – one of Truffault’s soldiers uses it to open the door when they board the Raza in Ep208 Stuff To Steal, People To Kill.

Congrats to ceresis64!  Drop me an email at moorsyum@yahoo.com with your mailing address, and I’ll send the script your way.

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Director Ron Murphy is armed and ready for you questions.  You have until Monday night to post them in this blog’s comments section!

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Hey, check out this concept vehicle, just in time for my Christmas road trip to Montreal!  Just got to fuel up, get the snow tires, and arm the mounted laser gun and I’m road ready!

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Suji has to work on that bark.

I leave you with…dog pictures…

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P.S. Suji now has her own instagram account here: NewOldPugSujiko

December 4, 2016: Snow Monkeys on the brink! Suji settles in!

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It’s all over but the crying (as my dad used to say).  Despite a valiant effort, and an impressive win in their last week of regular season play, it looks like my Snow Monkeys will come up one game short in their bid to grab that last playoff spot. There were a lot of missed opportunities this year, one of the biggest being our 1 point loss (a single point!) early in the season.  Ah well.

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Suji, meanwhile, has settled in and was showing off some surprising team colors early this morning.  Apparently, she’s a HUGE Drew Brees fan.

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Because she’s a little unsteady on her hind quarters, slippy-sliding across the hardwood floor, we’ve outfitted her with grippy doggy boots to help her negotiate her new surroundings.

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Lulu has taken a particular interest in her, intrigued by the interesting-smelling newcomer.

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They’ve even been hanging around together.

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But Suji seems to prefer human company.  She’s a lap dog in the truest sense of the term.

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Today, we hit the park.  Here’s Suji, ready to take flight.

And she’s off!

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A quick trip to Homesense snagged us three new doggy beds and this stylish festive hat.

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Ah, that sense of wonder…

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She’s growing more comfortable in her new home.  This afternoon, she even padded up to the patio door and asked to go out to pee.  At least I think that’s what she was doing.

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Enjoying a lazy Sunday afternoon.

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Like most pugs, she enjoys lazing about.  But she’s also pretty spunky, jumping out of bed to greet us when we come home, and running the carpet from our apartment to the elevator like a dog half her age.  She also LOVES to sleep in, which is something we have in common.

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Lulu breaks in the new dog bed.

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Relaxed.

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Suji took a trip to Homesense, Lulu got to go to the dog park, and Bubba joined us for a visit to the pet shop.  After every light he crosses, he’ll sit down on the sidewalk and patiently await his “good walking” reward.

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14 and still going strong!

Well, back at it tomorrow for me.  Main unit is at “the warehouse” while 2nd unit shoots (and I do mean that literally) in The Raza underbelly.

December 3, 2016: Introducing…Suji!

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Yesterday was the day!  Akemi and I went down to Toronto’s Union Station to meet the newest member of the family – Suji (aka Sujiko), who comes to us all the way from Portland, Oregon via The Pacific Pug Rescue.  Akemi saw little Suji (formerly Suzie) on their website a few weeks back and instantly fell in love.  She’d had a rough past few years, living in a barn with her brother (who was apparently also adopted by someone in the entertainment industry), and was suffering from a few issues, the chiefest being some mobility issues that cause her to drag her hind legs a little – but don’t keep her from getting around.  She’ll need a family with a lot of patience and love – and, fortunately for her, we have oodles of both.

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We picked her up in Jelly’s old stroller, bundled her up for the Canadian winter, and then we were off.

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On the way back to our place, she stopped to show off her getting-around skills.

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Akemi is, of course, super excited to finally have her here.  Suji, for her part, was downright exhausted from the flight.

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She settled in with her face toy and spent much of the day sitting around, getting attention.

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Then, when I got back from set, I helped Akemi give her a bath.

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Last night, she slept on the bed with us (natch) but, unlike Bubba and Lulu, proved herself a little burrower, tunneling under the blankets and snuggling up beside Akemi for most of the night.

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Akemi wasted no time indoctrinating her in our family way = Christmas sweater and antlers.

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Then, it was a stroll through the park.

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She has a little trouble getting around and is downright wobbly on those back legs, but with a little support, she can walk with the best of them.  In fact, she was positively motoring around at one point and I had to trot to keep up.

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Toy overload!

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Suji LOVES Jodelle (Ferland, Dark Matter’s FIVE) who came over today just to say hi and welcome her to Toronto.

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She was an interesting way of sitting – like she’s poised at the top of a slide.

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As the younger sister, looks like she’ll be getting a lot of Bubba’s hand-me-downs.

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 Super cute.

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We took her for a general check-up today.  Aside from the rear legs, some arthritis, and a small eye issue that should clear up within the week, she is good to go. She’s a little underweight at 12.6 pounds, but I’m confident that will change as she’s really taken to the raw food we got her.  She also enjoys liver treats and being hand fed.  Reminds me A LOT of Jelly.

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The happy family.

Special thanks to Ann and Josh who flew her in all the way from Portland.  And thanks to the Pacific Pug Rescue for facilitating the trip.

Suji will be enjoying her golden years in fine, loving style.

Akemi’s account…

September 10, 2016: Tokyo Travel Day! Enjoy the Dogs!

So, what did you all think of last night’s Dark Matter double-header?

Thrilling?

Touching?

Shocking?

All of the above?

Do tell!  Leave your feedback in the comments section.  I’ll peruse your thoughts once I land in Japan!

In the meantime, enjoy some dog pics.  Bubba, Lulu, and special guest star Petunia!

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