Friday, June 7, 2013
Entry # 308
June 7, 2013
Hello, Everyone, it’s me, Wimsey, coming to you from the soggy precincts of Manhattan’s Upper West Side where the wet weather is proving no impediment to my desire to be outdoors accompanied by my wet and dripping human Maria and her equally moist friend Elizabeth. I think they smell delightful when they are wet, but I gather that the feeling is not reciprocal as rain releases my inner pungent Hound (which smells a lot like my outer pungent Hound, only worse). Maria recently purchased a dehumidifier—she tells everyone it is because of the apartment but I know that it is because of me. It is astonishing how much moisture I can carry around in my coat for subsequent dispersal on the furniture (my humans actually wring out my wrinkles after I am bathed in a vain attempt to accelerate the drying process). But before the rains came we had several days of hot, humid weather whose only redeeming feature was that it caused a run up in my humans’ air conditioner bill on my account.
And on Sunday the climactic conditions caused my park walk to turn into my park lie down, sit down and roll down. But we did run into these fine mounted police officers who were the very same ones that I saw here last year covering an event on Fifth Avenue. And once again I was offered the opportunity to climb up into the van and get to know one of these giant beasts up close and personal and once again I declined in favor of trying to explore their nether regions and the snacks therein.
After this harrowing equine experience I went home with Elizabeth because Maria had a social event to attend (although why anyone should want to socialize with Maria without me, I have no idea; certainly no one we meet on the street is the least bit interested in her and a lot interested in me). This meant that Elizabeth got to sit with me through Thunderstorm Time, when I drool and stare fixedly ahead waiting for the world to end and she reassures me that it is only the Great Hound God Drule knocking over his humans’ furniture again.
Now generally I trust Elizabeth, since it was she who taught me everything I know about Annoying Hound Rituals. But then again I have a great deal of natural talent in the area of being annoying. And each time I display one of these rituals (for instance before exiting Elizabeth’s building yesterday for my after work walk, she had to leave something at the front desk and left me for 30 seconds; when she came back I poked her forcefully in the treat pouch and waited for The Cookie of Return to appear), Maria always harrumphs and says “Who taught him that?!” even though she knows the answer (and has to live with the answer) very well. And the response is always, “It’s a ritual. Dogs like rituals.” And I especially like rituals since they always seem to involve feeding me something nice. I believe that I am simply employing the “nothing is for free” principle of dog training, with a minor Hound twist. And every time there is a discussion about how I am not very bright I remind my humans of all the excellent things that I have learned:
Never allow one’s collar and harness to be put on without being offered a snack (coats cost extra snacks).
Never walk over the threshold without being offered a door snack (preferably ostrich jerky-the crack cocaine of the canine world).
Never permit Maria to leave for work without being offered a goodbye snack (preferably foie gras biscuits from a tony bakery).
Never get into a bathtub unless there are fistfuls of turkey involved.
Never stay in a bathtub unless there are fistfuls of turkey involved.
Standing by a water fountain will cause a human to kneel in front of you with your own personal bowl of water.
Staring at Maria at home will cause a water bowl with drool in it to be replaced with a water bowl without drool in it.
Staring at Maria at home will cause an empty kibble bowl to become a full kibble bowl.
Staring at Elizabeth in her apartment will cause a full kibble bowl to become a full kibble bowl with turkey, yam, pumpkin and/or other assorted leftovers in it.
Staring at either human during a walk will cause a cookie to appear.
Climbing into a humans’ lap causes scratching and petting to happen.
Staring at Elizabeth whilst lying on the futon causes scratching and petting to happen.
Thwacking a human with a paw causes scratching and petting to happen.
Rolling over causes my belly to be rubbed.
Staring at a human eating something desirable and drooling all over the floor causes food sharing to happen.
Spitting out a large piece of food causes it to be broken into bite-sized pieces and hand fed it to me.
Pooping while positioning my butt over or through fence railings causes my humans not to be able to pick it up.
Squeaking my Hedgehog in Elizabeth’s face causes a walk to happen.
Squeaking my Doggie in Maria’s face causes a walk to happen.
Turning into dead weight and refusing to move causes a walk not to happen.
Baying loudly causes people to give me things that I want.
Squeaking pathetically causes people to feel sorry for me and give me things that I want.
Sitting on my humans causes them to make noises like my favorite squeaky toys.
Spending time with me causes my humans to look stupid.
Spending time with me causes my humans to use HBO words.
Spending time with me causes my humans to need strong cocktails.
So I think I am quite an intelligent Hound. I have learned all life’s important lessons (and no one has ever accused me of not stopping to smell the roses--or to pee on them) and have cleansed my mind of unimportant trivia, such as those associated with the vastly overrated obeying of commands.
But when it comes to being obnoxious I cannot stress enough the importance of attention to detail. For instance, this week I found a tennis ball on Amsterdam Avenue and decided that I had an urgent need to play soccer with it. Now nothing is quite as disruptive to the flow of pedestrian traffic as a giant Hound playing soccer with a fast moving tennis ball. Nor did I evince any interest in heading over to the park with it. Later that day when Elizabeth and I were strolling in Central Park’s broad fields I happened upon another tennis ball. I ignored it. I mean what would be the point of playing soccer with a tennis ball in a venue in which one was supposed to play soccer with a tennis ball? Or what could be more annoying than my predilection on hot, humid days for eschewing the leafy greenness of the two major parks that are close by for a walk along scorching city streets that cause Elizabeth to drip sweat on me and say bad words? Or today when I decided that I fancied a long walk in the pouring rain in the water and mud logged fields of Central Park and decided to inspect a variety of fields in minute detail before selecting a spot upon which to poop. In spite of Elizabeth teaching my some excellent rituals, talent like mine is born, not made.
Anyway, in other exciting news, my Frenchie buddy Pluto has gone into business! It all started when his humans were on a trip to Paris and the woman who ran their hotel had a Frenchie called Bertrand and a ring that looked just like him. Further investigations led to a French artist living in Italy who was the creator of this masterpiece and thus it was that Pluto-Art (https://www.facebook.com/pages/Pluto-Art/452875591453336?fref=ts) was born. They’ve got lots of plans for product roll outs but if you want a ring crafted to look like your dog, give them a call.
I myself would like both my humans to have rings of me for those odd times when I can’t be with them in person. The ring would remind them that:
When they are eating in a restaurant they should cut their portions in half and have it wrapped for me
When I am alone they should curtail their activities, no matter how enjoyable, and come watch me nap
When they are passing car rental places they should rent me an SUV because I like to drive
When they pass a pet store they should pop in and buy me a toy with a loud squeaker that I can play with when the telephone rings.
When they are grocery shopping they should scour the aisles for items acceptable to the refined Wimsey palate
And of course the ring would remind them when they pass a liquor store that they need some more gin.
The only question is whether the ring should depict me in full demanding bay or with my ears jammed forward giving them “The Stare.”
Well I think I will leave it there for now. The weather report is calling for a lot more rain. It’s a good thing I have three raincoats.
Until next time,
Wimsey, pungent, proud and pesky
Posted by Wimsey at 10:09 PM
Saturday, June 1, 2013
June 1, 2013
Hello Everyone, it’s me, Wimsey, coming to you from the Upper West Side of Manhattan where there is only one topic of conversation on everyone’s lips: the weather! I am now officially joining my human Maria and her friend Elizabeth in their dismay about the week’s conditions. The last time we all agreed on anything it involved a large Dean’s pizza with mushrooms and extra cheese not a worst of all seasons weather marathon. My humans have been wearing winter jackets one day and t-shirts the next and I have been wearing a raincoat one day and my summer cooling coat the next. I am not happy. The only good thing is that neither are they--but I prefer to be the one responsible for that.
And speaking of responsibility, who or what is responsible for all this weather weirdness? I refuse to blame global warming since this would inevitably lead us into a discussions of animals that produce quantities of noxious gas and I’d rather not go there. And global warming also does not explain some of the ridiculously frigid conditions that have occurred for a good part of May, although they are much to be preferred to the 90-degree temperature and 90% humidity that we have now. I have heard some twaddle about the jet stream not being where it’s supposed to be but Hounds are never where they are supposed to be and we don’t wreak climactic havoc. Just the regular kind.
Anyway, I’ve decided to blame my humans, as they seem to be responsible for most of the unpleasant things that happen to me. Individuals capable of squirting stuff down my throat and into my ears and eyes, to say nothing of smearing ointment on my tush and making me stand lathered in de-yeasting soap whilst bath water rises dangerously to my ankles are capable of anything. They even gave me a bath on Memorial Day when normal people are out grilling tasty meats for their Hounds to steal.
But the week actually wasn’t a total loss. Sunday was quite a temperate day and during a lovely walk around the Central Park Reservoir I ran into Bowser, a six-month-old blue brindle pit and we had a vigorous extended play session that is partially captured here for posterity. I say partially because photographing a charging Hound at the end of a 20-foot leash was deemed inimical to Elizabeth’s continued good health so she contented herself with photographing me getting pushed around by the little tyke.
I particularly enjoyed it when he stood on my head as getting a good whiff of the underside of a fellow canine is a gift from the scent gods. I of course never get to push other canines around given the usual size differential so I have to content myself with pushing around my humans instead. It’s not quite the same thing but they do squeal in a very appealing manner.
And I had such a good time on Sunday that the ladies kept having to dangle the heinous gentle leader in front of my nose to get me to move instead of flopping down in the grass and doing my best imitation of a 130 pound garden gnome. Somehow I don’t think the guy who invented the wretched thing meant it to be used like that but dangling works just as well as when I am actually wearing it and it’s certainly a lot more comfortable.
But in the end it was a good thing that we had a long outing on Sunday because our return pre-bath park trip on Memorial Day was considerably less successful—the temperature had started to rise and the park was so packed with people that it was more like Times Square than Central Park. And walking through Times Square with a giant Hound is not a relaxing experience. Of course walking anywhere with a giant Hound is not a relaxing experience—eternal vigilance is the price my humans pay for keeping me out of trouble. Just yesterday Elizabeth’s attention slipped and in a trice I had ingested a large bone that I scavenged in the park (I hope it wasn’t CSI evidence or anything). I am now on 72 hour “bone watch” (I have a lengthy and leisurely digestive system) and will be carted off to the emergency vet’s at the slightest sign of trouble.
Anyway, the rest of the week was pretty much a bust—rainy weather followed by hazy, hot and humid conditions which necessitated the premature reappearance of the dreaded cooling coat. Having a cold, wet coat thrown over one, no matter how much it reduces the risk of heat stroke is never a pleasant experience—it just seems to make so much more sense to drag my humans into a cold, wet lake instead. And given the fact that city pavement becomes hot, I greatly fear that the invention of cooling booties is next.
And then there is the aggravating situation of Elizabeth continuously messing with her new phone and trying to assemble a satisfactory assortment of apps for it. I’ve been checking into these apps I find that they all have serious deficiencies so I have some improved ones that I think should be developed:
Yelp: This app can be used to find the closest outdoor cafes where you can cruise by with your Hound so he can cadge or steal food from unsuspecting diners. The app is aptly named since this is the sound people make when their food is disappeared from their plates by a large, swiftly moving Hound.
Groupon: An excellent “deal of the day” app where you can find discounts on pet massages, bully sticks, gourmet snacks, cushy beds and a vast array of items pleasing to your Hound (coats, vet visits, nail clippers and things that get poured or sprayed into orifices are not included).
Evernote: A great app for keeping “to do” lists for your Hound and all his doings. Everything from his busy social calendar crashing weddings in the park to pouncing on fellow Hounds to reminders of his extensive belly rub schedule. It’s a very useful app for keeping track of all the cute things that your Hound does—such as following people eating ice cream and baying at them---so you can share his antics with others.
Foursquare: Foursquare lets you alert everyone as to where your Hound is at any given time. This enables people to choose locations for their picnics out of harms way and for pedestrians averse to having drool flung in their faces to choose a drier route. Additionally, it informs humans bearing Hound tribute as to where they can bring their sandwiches, water bottles, pretzels, and assorted other desirable comestibles for Hound consumption.
Angry Hounds: An entertaining game in which Hounds deprived of the best spot on the sofa or denied the contents of the refrigerator or garbage can fling drool on humans, dislocate their shoulders, pin them to the couch, eat their underwear, TP the house, dig up the garden, bay at the neighbor’s cat, drag their humans into bodies of water or otherwise make their displeasure known. The game teaches humans that giving a Hound what he wants is a whole lot less disruptive than the alternative.
Grub Hub: An excellent app that lets you order in takeout food after you accidentally left your dinner unattended on the kitchen counter.
Google translate: This is a wonderful app that translates such useful phrases as “Beware of the drool,” “My Hound wants your meal,” “It will come out in the wash,”
“My Hound wishes to inspect your bag,” “That wasn’t my hand, it was my Hound’s nose,” “Would you like these earplugs,” “Yes, his hair sticks to cleavage,” “Here, let me help you up,” and of course the number one essential phrase for anyone with a Hound, “I’m sorry!”
iBay: This app is like Google translate except it translates your Hound’s bays into human phrases such as “Gimme that!’ “Gimme that now!” “If you don’t gimme that I will take it!” “These people are in my way, move them!” “This fence is in my way, move it!” “Let’s go. These people are boring and they have no food!” “Hello neighborhood! Wake up, I’ve just seen my friend Pluto!”
Google Maps: This app will direct you to all the snack shops, pet stores, and outdoor cafes in the city. Also to assorted vertical surfaces such as people’s bicycles upon which you are not supposed to pee but will anyway, SUV running boards (Aka pooping platforms) and to all locations sporting a “No Dogs Allowed” sign.
Houndflix: A movie app that continuously streams Best in Show.
PayVet: An app that allows the seamless transfer of funds from your bank account to your vet’s.
Well you get the idea. Right now Elizabeth’s phone is programmed to say “He is a bloodhound,” and “He drools” in Spanish. And last week Maria could have used my translation app-- she initiated a conversation in Hungarian with some folks that she heard commenting in that language on my snatching a piece of garbage from the gutter and then realized that her Hungarian vocabulary had a serious omission. She did not know the word for “drool”
But I did have a bit of revenge for all the phone stuff though—Elizabeth was on line at the phone store and the clerk sniffed the air and said, “I smell a dog. Is there a dog in here?” and I wasn’t with her. At least not physically. There are no products to combat body odor when the body in question isn’t your own.
Well I think I will leave it there for this week. This weather is supposed to continue until Monday so you will find me with my nose in front of the AC trying to set a new record for how long I can refuse to go out and use the bathroom.
Until next time,
Wimsey, a Hound of many tongues, all of them wet
Posted by Wimsey at 1:15 PM
Friday, May 24, 2013
May 24, 2013
Hello Everyone, Wimsey here coming to you from the Upper West Side of Manhattan where it has been a crazy week weather-wise—one day it’s August and then the next day it’s March. But fortunately every day is make my humans crazy day. The hapless humans in question are my primary human Maria and her friend Elizabeth with whom I have many indoor and outdoor adventures when I stay with her during the day (or as I like to think of them, Hound Nanny #1 and Hound Nanny #2). For instance, the other day when I was carrying out one of my frequent merchandise inspections at Unleashed, my favorite pet shop, one of the clerks attempted to feed me a rather large oatmeal cookie. I promptly spat it out until Elizabeth helpfully informed her that I prefer my larger cookies broken in two before I consume them. It’s important for a Hound to be surrounded by those who share his mission in life—his personal satisfaction and comfort.
So the week got off to a fine start on Sunday—there was a cold, steady downpour during our Sunday afternoon expedition in Central Park that I found especially conducive to taking a nice long walk and my humans found especially conducive to hating me. It was all “Why can’t Wimsey be like a normal dog and not want stay out in the rain,” but they should know better than to use the word normal and me in the same sentence. They got thoroughly soaked, as a Wimsey walk is no match for foul weather gear of any kind. But I enjoyed myself.
And as an added bonus, Elizabeth’s Blackberry got wet and became inoperable, which sent her scurrying to the store for the pricey, new Z10 model. She was due to replace her old Blackberry anyway so I was deeply offended that she omitted to thank me for accelerating the process. Elizabeth also carries an Android phone (both my ladies are extremely fond of gadgets. As am I) which is a pity since she seldom gets to look at either one of them during our long afternoon walks together. The main problem is that she keeps one phone clipped to my treat pouch and the other phone actually in my treat pouch so any time she reaches for a phone I call a halt to the proceedings and demand to be immediately snacked. If she persists in trying to access her phones, I feel a sudden urge to pull her someplace requiring immediate intervention. The only exception I make is that I allow her to check her emails when we enter her building to determine if I have a package waiting at the front desk. These frequently contain highly desirable items that I enjoy.
Keeping one’s humans out in inclement weather is one of the great Joys of Houndom. The only inclement weather that I do not like are thunderstorms and when these occur I find I have an urgent need to go home immediately and my human have an urgent need to keep four hands on the leash to stop me. But between the hot weather, the intense rain, the thunderstorms, etc. we have very few pictures of your truly this week. On the hot days I am pretty much either lying in the grass which is not all that visually interesting or attempting to roll in a cool mud puddle which requires some focused preventative measures and on the rainy days the lens becomes rather moister than is consistent with coherent images. And then there is also the fact that Elizabeth is lazy about taking pictures.
Anyway, yesterday I was having a fine nap on the futon and I fell off onto the floor. The sound brought Elizabeth running to make sure I was OK but I wouldn’t know since I was still asleep at the time. It occurred to me that I have considerable expertise in the nap department and that perhaps I should share it for posterity.
This nap section is dedicated to my humans, one of whom generally insists on hogging the bed at night (Maria) and then can’t fall asleep because she is too busy trying to think up new ways to get me to let her administer my eye ointment or to give me my liquid anti-inflammatory medication. My other human (Elizabeth) has to take Ambien when I come for a sleepover and wakes up at the merest hint in the middle of the night of some modest ear flapping or water slurping.
Location, location location! : The first thing to do to achieve a successful nap is to carefully choose a location. Monopolizing the entire length of the couch is a classic but don’t ignore the other pieces of furniture in which humans like to sit, especially those with good sight lines to the TV. Also not to be ignored (and one of my personal favorites) is stretching out the length of the couch on the floor and using its bottom as a back support. While not as obvious as napping on the couch itself, it makes the couch equally unusable for humans as there is no room for their feet. Also one can nap right behind the computer chair so that its occupant has to squeeze tightly against the desk should they want to get up.
Another fine napping idea is to identify a strategic corridor between rooms and to lie down in such a way so that everyone has to step over you. This is a clever variation on stretching out in the middle of the kitchen during meal preparation times so that cooking resembles a game of Twister. But be creative! Anything that your humans might need to access—like their iPad, their phones, the remote control, today’s newspaper, a coat, etc., make wonderful things upon which to lie.
The Sounds: Sounds are an extremely important part of a successful nap. This can be anything from the classic deafening snore to dream induced noises such as bays, snorts, whines or squeaks. Also do not neglect the sound that your (hopefully) long nails make on your napping surface as you run vigorously in your sleep. Slapping and thumping one’s weighty tail is also a delightful way to ensure a lack of peace and quiet even while you are not actively pursuing an obviously disruptive activity. A quieter, yet equally attention getting noise can be added by conducting a little pre-nap digging and rearranging of whatever surface you happen to be lying on. This can be anything from making a mound of fine Frette linens and down duvets to leaving deep talon tracks in the oriental rug (this latter being one of my personal favorites because humans never expect you to dig up the rug any more than they expect you to eat the mail).
The Smell: No primer on napping would be complete without a word about the unfettered effects that naps have on one’s digestive system. For this reason it is always best to have eaten a fine meal before a nap, preferably one that includes some stinky foods such as cheese, sausage, liverwurst or horse poop. And I recommend positioning oneself to maximize your human’s olfactory appreciation of your efforts.
The Reposition: Repositioning from time to time is extremely important for one’s orthopedic health and allows you and your humans to experience the nap in a variety of incarnations. It is always best to begin repositioning with a satisfying scratch, preferably while grunting loudly and displaying one’s manly bits. Next it’s time for a firm head shake which results in loud ear flapping and the repositioning of a substantial quantity of drool from your flews to your human’s walls. Having a refreshing and messy drink of water is essential to the process and as I am a very tidy Hound this also involves wiping my wet and drooly muzzle on a convenient pant leg or piece of upholstered furniture. The reposition is also an opportunity to thwack a human with a paw for some reposition relaxation as well as to find a potentially more successful (or annoying, depending on your point of view) napping venue.
Above all, remember that the nap should be a relaxing experience. For you.
Well today is the start of the Memorial Day Weekend, although cold, windy and wet weather are generally not high on anyone’s list (except mine) for outdoor activities. There is the usual talk around here of cleaning up the back yard for a barbecue and also of giving me a bath, which I view as just an excuse for my humans to drink strong cocktails and consume caloric take out food. It can’t possibly be otherwise since the stink removal only lasts a paltry 48 hours.
But Memorial Day is the start of the summer season and the summer season always puts me in mind of a phalanx of decorative humans lounging around in spotless white attire just waiting to be slimed by a festive Hound. And because I consider myself the Martha Stewart of Hounds I offer up three chapters from my upcoming summer book:
Wimsey’s Principles of Gracious Gardening
1. Dig holes to add visual interest to an otherwise boring expanse of lawn.
In addition to being immensely decorative, holes provide a cool place to nap on sunny days. Holes can also be transformed into refreshing mud baths on rainy days (NB: taking a dip in the pool or lounging on the lawn furniture after a mud bath is strongly recommended).
2. Do not neglect to prune the ornamental shrubs—too many (or any) branches and leaves can give your garden a messy appearance.
3. To fully display the magnificence of your ornamental shrubs consider displaying their root systems as well.
4. Chewed up fences will enhance the rustic feel of your garden.
5. Holes under the chewed up fences will encourage a wide variety of wildlife to share the enjoyment of your garden.
6. Do not forget to water the flowerbeds frequently.
7.Fertilize, fertiliz, fertilize.
Wimsey’s Gracious Things to do With a Lawn Chair
1. Take a nap on it.
2. Remove the cushion and drag it to a more desirable location, such as a pile of muddy leaves and then take a nap on it.
3. Eat the cushion.
4. Eat whatever the cushion was on.
Wimsey’s Foolproof Gracious Guide to Successful Summer Barbecuing:
1. Knock over the grill
2. Steal the food
Well you get the idea. Summer brings out the creative side of the Hound. And the creative side of the Hound brings out the gin swilling side of the human.
I think I will leave it there for this week. I hope everyone enjoys the weekend and regardless of what the weather is like, remember that although your Hound is always there to “entertain” you stuffing him full of hot dogs and hamburgers will make him a little less “entertaining.” At least until he wakes up.
Until next time,
Wimsey, a Gracious Hound
Posted by Wimsey at 9:57 PM
Saturday, May 18, 2013
May 18, 2013
Hello Everyone, Wimsey here, celebrating the Merry Month of May in the sylvan precincts of Manhattan’s Upper West Side where, although the temps have still been a bit chilly, the sun has been shining and it has begun to warm up. So much so that my human Maria and her friend Elizabeth have had to put the AC on a couple of times in their respective apartments to keep the indoor temp at a comfortably ambient level for yours truly. As a rather generously proportioned canine my humans live in fear that I will overheat at the slightest rise in the thermometer and anyone who takes issue with this will be treated to Elizabeth’s long and boring treatise on the surface to volume ratios that cause we large mammals to retain heat and keep ourselves toasty. Generally she trots out this lecture for the benefit of vocal and combative Manhattanites who are misguided as to the purpose of my summer cooling coat and yell rude things. By the time she’s done setting them straight their eyes are glazed over but at least they are no longer angry about a dog wearing a coat in July. She’s considering carrying thermal retention charts on her iPad to illustrate her subject more thoroughly but I think she should carry pictures of mastiffs, bullmastiffs, Great Danes, St. Bernards, shar-peis and all the other breeds for whom I have been mistaken instead.
Anyarhoo, the week got off to a fine start on Sunday as Central Park was packed with people for Japan Day which I considered to be Wimsey Day (although every day is technically Wimsey Day) and my humans had to employ a variety of clever stratagems (and much turkey) to prevent me from invading the ramen tents (mysteriously, all the paths that I wanted to walk down seemed to lead back to these tents). And because the park was hosting a special event there were medical personnel in attendance and I managed to locate this ambulance and its EMTs for my personal perusal. There was much that looked like it required further investigation in the back of the ambulance (although sadly no injured human in need of health giving slobber) but I was about as successful with my ambulance invasion enterprise as I was at the ramen tents. Nevertheless, I managed to garner much admiration and scratching for my efforts.
And then when we were on our way out of the park (or more accurately, when my humans were on their way out of the park, I was on my way somewhere else entirely), this nice woman with a very fine looking basset Hound came running down the hill to ask if I was Wimsey. She had apparently started reading my blog years ago when investigating whether her move to New York from Georgia would suit her Basset Hound and has been keeping an eye out for me ever since. Elizabeth tried to get a picture of her Hound and me but getting a picture of two Hounds together was more of a challenge than she had the patience for after an entire afternoon spent photographing my posterior and my profile. It is always wonderful to meet my fans—especially when they have the effect of delaying my departure from the park.
But although Sunday was fun, Monday was even more entertaining. At least for me. It had apparently been far too long since my last visit to the Blue Pearl Vet Clinic (formerly NY Vet Specialists—the folks who operated on me a few years ago and to whom I am taken to see specialist vets) so on Monday I went to see the neurologist. This time it was to ascertain whether a bone spur in my back is impinging on a nerve and making me stiff. So in the spirit of a diary within a diary, I present:
12:30 pm: Elizabeth arrives at my apartment. I am napping on Maria’s bed and require that my reanimation involve the substantial rubbing of my underside.
12:40pm: I am awake but have no intention of removing myself from the bed without sufficient inducement. Inducement arrives in the form of turkey and wheedling.
12:45pm: After a long and messy drink of water, I ascend the Tribute Couch and drip all over Elizabeth while she scratches me and sucks up by telling me what a good boy I am. In return I magnanimously allow her to apply my eye ointment, clean my ears and brush my teeth. Then I lift my head to indicate that it is time for the scratching between the flews portion of the programme.
12:55 pm: My collar and harness are presented but I have no intention of getting off the Tribute Couch until more tribute is forthcoming. This time it is in the form of the magic words “Wimsey, do you want a cookie?”
1pm: After another drink of water, most of which has now been wiped on Elizabeth’s pants, we are out the door! Just in time for another cookie.
1:10pm: Our appointment is for 2pm and the vet clinic is a 20-minute walk as the crow flies; it is, however, a 1-hour walk as the Hound perambulates.
1:30pm: I have decided that I must revisit the Time Warner Center and Columbus Circle and take a relaxing walk down Broadway and then on to 8th Avenue which is packed with charging people, honking cars and screaming kids-- all of whom make walking a giant, nosy Hound akin to playing an obstacle dodging video game. I could have walked through either Riverside Park or Central Park but why walk in serene greensward when one can charge inconveniently through the heart of a loud, throbbing city?
2:00pm: After a few more urban detours we arrive! Elizabeth has an extensive pre-exam discussion all about me with the vet tech. This is very gratifying, although I am not crazy about being weighed and having my temperature taken. I find consolation in the immediate application of some turkey.
2:15pm Neurologist and his team arrive! Love this guy—I was taken to see him previously for mysterious jaw twitches. Elizabeth confesses to him that like so many of my ailments, the jaw twitches miraculously vanished after my visit with him. After some preliminary examining (and petting) team decides to escort me outside to watch me walk. I love walking with an entourage! Team looks at Elizabeth funny and asks her what exactly my problem is. I am in fine fettle!
2:30pm: Lots more touching and petting by team. Everyone impressed by the state of my nails—middle ones worn down and outer ones like talons. When was the last time they were cut? Elizabeth mumbles, “uh, like never.” (Not quite true, they were slightly trimmed once many years ago when I was unfairly placed under anesthesia).
2:50pm: Elizabeth and team sit around and discuss ME. I have a lovely nap on the floor while everyone admires me and while potential options for expensive joint easing remedies are discussed. I am apparently neurologically normal and Elizabeth is apparently neurologically alarmist.
3:00pm: Elizabeth hands over credit card on my behalf (again) and I escort her to bathroom to supervise the interesting activities therein.
3:05pm: We are out the door but instead of going straight home I find that I have an urgent need to explore 8th Avenue again.
3:15pm: Decide that it’s time to head over to the far west side and check out the John Jay College of Justice (whose sports teams have the bloodhound as a mascot) to see if I am recognized.
3:30pm: Decide that a nice walk in Riverside Park is in order after all.
4:00pm: Carry on at the Pier One Café looking for food.
4:30: Arrive at Elizabeth’s apartment at last! Inventory my toy pile then stare at her to demand that she puts something other than kibble in my food bowl.
4:35pm: Yam, turkey and pumpkin deemed acceptable. I tuck in. Vet visits are hungry work!
4:40pm: Elizabeth wonders if it is too early for gin.
I wish every day could be Monday! The rest of the week paled by comparison-- although I have been dropping by the Boat Basin quite a bit to snag a few of the large Milk Bones that they feed me there. My humans find my Milk Bone enthusiasm deeply annoying since I have bags of organic, gourmet snacks at home that I routinely spit out. And since the weather has been so fine, I quite enjoy parking myself in an adjacent field and watching the boats float down the Hudson whilst Elizabeth sits and watches me watching the boats float down the Hudson and thinks about all the other things that she should be doing instead.
Well I think I will stop there for this week. But before I go I must apologize for the late blog post. I was almost finished with it yesterday when Maria called and insisted that Elizabeth and I meet her in Central Park after work and then that we all go back to my apartment for Dean’s pizza—my favorite! What with all that park perambulating and pizza mawing I’m afraid I went to sleep instead of finishing the post. All this is by way of explaining that yesterday, when most of this was written, was May 17th and May 17th is both the anniversary of the birth and the death of the great Renaissance artist, Sandro Botticelli. My tribute to him from my personal collection at The Wimsey Institute of Houndish Art his below.
Until next time,
Wimsey, neurologically normal and driving humans neurologically insane
Posted by Wimsey at 11:49 AM