Stinky Chicken Dog

Listen to this post:

I’m so very excited to introduce you to first-time filmmaker Jenni Funk and her short documentary, “Stinky Chicken Dog.” I gotta hand it to her for that name. It’s just the best.

Jenni and I worked together on “Stinky Chicken Dog” for only about 10 hours. I really admire Jenni because she only needed to meet once, film one day, and have one editing session to produce this piece. (Of course, she worked on writing and programming her narration for a good bit of time too.) Jenni’s intuitions about artistic choices are exciting, and she’s motivated me to spend more time feeling what an artsy moment feels like. Really feeling it.

I also appreciate supporting Jenni’s work because she uses Alternative and Augmentative Communication technology. So, just by producing a film that she stars in, she’s challenging the very limiting idea most non-disabled and hearing people have that speech–that is good, pretty, fluent, or pleasant speech–is good or effective communication. Or that some specific kind of voice makes prettier art than some other kind of voice. You’ll hear Jenni communicate through voice output on an iPad, and you’ll also hear me with some Audio Description. The film also, of course, has Closed Captions.

If all of that doesn’t entice you, here’s a picture of the actual stinky chicken dog, Kali. A small brindled chihuahua with a white face sits in an Oregon Ducks dog bed up on a living room recliner. She looks toward the camera with big, wet eyes.

And here below is the short film “Stinky Chicken Dog” by Jenni Funk. For those of you who know me well, no, making a documentary about her relationship with her dog was not my idea! I know it’s a major theme in my work. But before you try to give me credit or chuckle about how much of my work is about people with disabilities and their animals, know this was Jenni’s idea. And give her three cheers for coming up with a very film that’s extremely honest and nuanced on her first go-around. I hope I get to collaborate on more films with Jenni (and Kali if she’s available).