This is Trek. Trek and his heart belong to three young girls that think the world of him. Trek gets to hang out with his cat pal, Mittens, gets lots of snacks and kisses, and spends the day napping and waiting for his next family adventure. All dogs should be so fortunate.

Trek also has a secret, a forbidden love: Clarice.

Children nowadays wonder why their parents get all happy and nostalgic in December when this old cartoon, “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” is shown on television. It was a stop-motion number made in 1964, which may seem low tech and hokey now, but for 1964 was pretty amazing stuff. Rudolph, Santa, Yukon Cornelius, Hermey, the Island of Misfit Toys, and even the Abominable Snow Monster were seasonal highlights for us along with the “Charlie Brown Christmas Special” and “The Grinch That Stole Christmas.” It was one of the few evenings that our parents actively encouraged us to watch television.

Now do you remember Clarice? Clarice was Rudolph’s best girl, the young doe that that liked his nose and went to look for Rudolph when he ran off with dental-wannabe Hermey. Clarice had very expressive eyelashes a cute red bow with polka dots. This is how we knew she was a doe instead of a buck.

Back to Trek, however. Trek spied his girls’ stuffed animal, Clarice, and thought she might want to play reindeer games with him. Lust consumed him. Clarice was meant to be his. She was soft and tasty and adorable…and there must be a squeaker in her somewhere, right?

Sadly for Trek (but luckily for Clarice), this holiday tryst was interrupted by the parental command of “Trek! RELEASE CLARICE!!” And Trek, who really is a good soul, did. It’s Christmas, after all, and he has high hopes of finding more than coal in his Christmas stocking. When he nods off at night, however, it is not sugar plums that shimmy into his dreams. It’s….Clarice.