October 2nd, 1997

Wow! I made the basketball team! I can hardly believe it – all of that hard work and practice finally paid off. Coach Barker said he saw something special in me. I have the utmost faith in his judgment, and I will do my best to live up to his expectations.

Overall, the team looks absolutely stellar, save for one weird thing: some dog named Buddy followed me to the gym one day, and Coach Barker picked him for Point Guard. The starting Point Guard. There are human kids sitting on the bench because a golden retriever beat them out for the spot. He's pretty good, but I don't think he even goes to this school. Is he a foreign exchange pet?

October 17th, 1997

Buddy – or "Air Bud" as some people are calling him – is starting to get on my nerves. I mean, it's hard to get angry at a lovable pooch like him, but he's such a ball hog – especially for an animal without opposable thumbs with which to grip the ball. He shoots (well, he bounces the ball off of his nose) whenever anyone gives him the ball, he never dribbles, and he refuses to wear the school-prescribed shorts during games, so his junk is always flapping around like a phallic pinata getting knocked back and forth.

He got a triple-double against Culver High last week though, so I guess I shouldn't complain too much. I guess I'm still sore over all of the rabies shots I've had to get. I'm sorry I miss a free throw every now and then, Buddy, but that's no excuse to get so bitey!

October 29th, 1997

My faith in Coach Barker's strategy is beginning to wane. He just replaced Dan Witkus, our Small Forward, with a dachshund named James. Meanwhile "Air Bud" is getting more difficult to play with by the day, barking at us constantly in the locker room whenever we're racking up too many fouls before halftime or when he needs to be walked. What a diva.

I decided to talk to one of the refs at the last game about the whole "putting dogs on a public school basketball team" issue, but he told me that there was no specific rule forbidding it, so he had to allow it. Um, there's no specific rule against me kicking a ref in the groin, but I'm pretty sure I'd get in trouble for it all the same.

Also, Buddy started showing up in my Algebra class. He seems to have a knack for it, but the whole thing is rubbing me the wrong way.

November 8th, 1997

Honestly, "Dach J" and "Air Bud" are making me really regret joining basketball. No one on the team gets along with them, they take all of the credit for our team's success, and it's beginning to seem like they think they're better than us. The school paper did a feature on the team the other day, and the whole article was almost nothing but the two dogs. The weird part is that the piece made no specific mention that the two were canines at all, but just treated them like normal basketball players. They do have pretty impressive stats, but when all of the pull-quotes are "RRRrrrrrrrrRRRrrrr Aaarrrrrrrrr ggggggrRRRRrrrrr" and "(panting sound)", I think you have a journalistic duty to at least put an asterisk in there somewhere.

Coach Barker tells the rest of us not to worry, but I saw him running what looked like a try-out at the local dog park yesterday. Terriers, rottweilers, poodles, mutts – you name it, they were there, knocking around basketballs and running laps (or maybe chasing squirrels, it was hard to tell).

Buddy is now tutoring me in Algebra. I'm learning a lot, even though I can't help but feel something is amiss about the situation. Is it normal for your mom to rub a tutor's belly for five minutes?

November 20th, 1997

I am the last human left on Woofton High's basketball team, and I just lost my spot as starting Center. While I'm riding the bench, "Air Bud," "Dach J," "Jason Terrier," "Major Canis," and "Sir Charles Dogley" are becoming the most dominant team in state history. College scouts have been showing up at games with giant bags of Beggin' Strips and chewable toys. I could've sworn I saw Phil Jackson discretely sneaking into the local animal shelter and emerging a few minutes later with like nine dogs. And the janitors are nearing a strike over the amount of dog feces they have to clean up on a regular basis off of the gym floor.

I'm guessing my time playing here is growing short, based on Coach Barker casually mentioning I might serve the team better as the "Kibbles Manager." Personally, I think I might just quit at this point. Adding a flea collar to the uniform feels like a pretty clear sign that I don't belong.

Baxter High, our biggest rival, just made a ferret their Power Forward. I have no idea what is happening to this game.

Meanwhile, Buddy got a 1600 on his SAT, even though I'm pretty sure he's illiterate and can't write. I watched him literally eat half of his scantron. What is happening?

November 29th, 1997

I'm off the basketball team, replaced by a chihuahua named Tiny. Doesn't matter to me, I was sick of it all anyhow. Thinking of trying out for the football team – that seems pretty safe from dog invasion, right?

Buddy stole my prom date, which has me pretty bummed. Not as bummed as the lunch menu switching from Taco Tuesdays to Alpo Everydays, but still…things have not been going my way lately.

My mom's bedroom door now has a smaller doggy door towards the bottom. Weird.

January 14th, 1998

Every sport in the public school system is now completely filled by dogs, with almost every team at Woofton High being led by Buddy (now known as the "Golden Receiver," "Heavyweight Barkser," or "The Dog That Plays Tennis," depending on which sport he's currently playing). Cats rule the drama club and chess teams. And if you can find a single debate team member who's not a gerbil, I'd be really surprised.

Buddy was eating breakfast at my house this morning. Apparently he's mom's new boyfriend and I should start calling him "Air Dad."

Frankly, I'm beginning to think that that crazed astronaut who was ranting about a "world run by dogs" may have been onto something. Oh well. Time to check Air Dad for tapeworms.