Friday, July 11, 2008

Wimsey's Blog: Diary of a Manhattan Bloodhound

Entry # 75
July 11, 2008

Hello Everyone. It’s me Wimsey, recovering nicely from the Fourth of July festivities here on Manhattan’s sun, fun and rain soaked Upper West Side. My human Maria and her friend Elizabeth have made a charming new edition to their Wimsey Wear hounding fashion ensembles—they now escort me about with rain slickers tied around their waists. I mean what are sneakers, drool encrusted jeans and baggy t-shirts without this elegant accessory? Since it takes two (and sometimes four) hands to walk me, umbrellas are out of the question so I am wondering what is next—perhaps those hats that have the umbrellas attached? Now these chapeaux would really top off their outfits and make quite a bold fashion statement. And for once I don’t think it would be me that people were staring at.

But all this tropical weather is about to get worse as we enter the hurricane season. What I love about the hurricane season is that technology now gets my humans all anxious weeks ahead of time (“Oh no! A hurricane has formed off the coast of Africa! It could strike the Upper West Side next month! It will annoy Wimsey and it will mess up his coat. Perhaps we shouldn’t even think about bathing him!) And then, oh look, these hurricanes somehow miraculously dissipate somewhere in the 3,000 miles between the Upper West Side and Africa.

Elizabeth is already weather-obsessed and consults the local Doppler radar before each of my walks. She tries to time them to avoid our frequent deluges (“It looks to me like the next approaching rain cell is traveling at 9 miles per hour north-northwest and our best chance of escape is to walk Wimsey between 18:14 and 19:02 hours”). Or not. Meteorological forecasting turns out not to be one of her talents and we all end up getting soaked anyway in spite of her efforts. But her faith in the mystical power of the Doppler remains. Probably because she’s blinded by science. But the really upsetting thing about hurricane season is that they name the storms alphabetically and they never get to Hurricane Wimsey

Al Roker: It appears that a new hurricane, Hurricane Wimsey, has formed off the coast of Africa and it looks to be immensely powerful. The worst storm of the season.

Wiilard Scott: It would be considering its name.

Al Roker: And it appears to have a mind of its own when choosing its path—it seems to suddenly veer north, then stop, then hurl itself east. Sometimes it even goes backwards. It doesn’t obey any of the rules.

Willard Scott: Yes, that’s a common problem with Wimsey Class storms. One never knows what they are going to do next, only that it won’t be good.

Al Roker: Most of us are fortunate that we never had to live though one—I hear their destructive power is enormous.

Willard Scott: That’s an understatement, Al. Nothing is safe. Not even your underwear.

Al Roker: I also understand that they bring a tremendous amount of moisture.
Willard Scott: That’s true. Absolutely everything gets soaked. And the noise is deafening.

Al Roker: Yes I understand the howling is hard to ignore.

Willard Scott: Nothing about a Wimsey Class storm can be ignored, but the noises they make seem to be pitched lower than regular howling, which only adds to its penetrating power.

Al Roker: And then there is of course the peculiar and pungent odor that they bring.
Willard Scott: Some say they pick it up from some exotic African vegetation but it’s a pretty unique odor.

Al Roker: And how long do these storms last?

Willard Scott: Hard to say, Al. They are very stubborn. Waiting them out is wholly ineffective. They stay until they want to go somewhere else. Enduring them is part of the burden we bear as humans.


But in spite of the threat of hurricanes, there is still a lot of summer fun to be had here in New York. You will see from the pictures below that the Great Lawn of Central Park is being converted into a concert arena. Bon Jovi is apparently going to play there on Saturday. I myself think it would be much more entertaining to listen to a band called Hound Jovi. I think I would make an excellent front man and they wouldn’t have to waste electricity on microphones.

Similarities between Rock Bands and Hound Bands

Rock bands trash hotel rooms. Hound bands trash your rooms.

Rock bands rip their clothes off. Hound bands rip your clothes off.

Rock bands are loud and unruly. Hound bands are louder and more unruly.

Rock bands are rebelling against society. Hound bands are rebelling against you.

Women find rock bands irresistible. Women find Hound bands even more irresistible.

Rock bands like to sleep around. Hound bands also like sleep around (preferably in your bed).

Rock bands wear leather. Hound bands chew leather.

Rock bands have a mosh pit. Hound bands have a nosh pit.

Rock bands abuse drugs. Hound bands abuse you.

And just like a rock star, I have to contend with the copious attentions of New York’s Hound groupies. You wouldn’t think that there would be Hound groupies in New York, but there are. They are generally people who have never lived with a Hound. They think we’re cute.

And of course, I too have to deal with being photographed all the time. I often wonder what people do with all these photos of me? Do they show them to their friends and families as mementoes of their visit to New York City (“Everything’s bigger in New York, even the Hounds” or “People in New York are crazy—they live with giant Hounds”).
Or do they hang my picture on their walls along with the bloodhound motto “Yes I Will!” for inspiration about getting what they want out of life? Notice the bloodhound motto is not “Yes I can” because of course we can. Being able to do something is beside the point. What matters is that we will do something. We will dig up your yard. We will shove you off the bed and the couch. We will fling drool on your walls, your guests and your possessions. We will steal your dinner. We will redecorate your home. We will fill your abode with Hound scent. We will steal and shred your underwear. We will dislocate your shoulder. We will drag you down the stairs. We will knock you over. We will use our nose on everything, everywhere at every time. And most important, we will never give up.

Now many people have wondered where this indomitable will comes from (and my humans have wondered how to circumvent it) but I like to think I am just gifted. Instead of fighting it, I think my humans should just write a self help book (you know like the guy who wrote Elizabeth I, CEO).

Wimsey’s Rules

Keep your life uncluttered by unnecessary thoughts, like those about what other people want.

Focus on your own needs. After all no one is as important as you.

Be clear and direct about what you want: never leave people in doubt as to whether it is your intention to dig up the ornamental flower bed or pee all over the rosebushes.

If you start a job, always finish it, even if people are screaming at you.

Aim high. (except when crashing into people, then take out the knees). And remember: a Hound’s reach should exceed his grasp (but never that of his mouth).

Innovate—keep people guessing about what you will do next; it keeps their attention focused on you. Where it belongs.

Be opportunistic: if someone turns his back on a roast chicken, go for it, even if you were originally intending to raid the garbage.

Never listen to gossip or anything else people say. It’s all nonsense anyway.

Never go out of your way to please someone; it’s their job to please you.

Never question the meaning of your existence—assume its purpose is to get your own way.

Take risk: even if you might get caught, your audacity will strike terror into the hearts of those around you.

Focus your energies: block out everything and everyone who stands between you and your goal. Remember you are bigger, stronger, louder and droolier than most of them.

Keep your friends close and your enemies far away. Life is pleasanter that way.

Maintain your integrity: a bribe is the slippery slope to obedience training.

Be resourceful: when one path is blocked, dig another.

Never let people call you stubborn. You are persistent, determined and tenacious. It sounds better.

Well I believe that I have a lot of wisdom to impart. Humans always seem to lead such complicated lives while we Hounds find bliss in a simple life devoted to furthering our own interests--- like a lot of very successful humans, actually. I am sure that behind every hugely successfully human you will find a Hound.

But now it is once again time to visit the Wimsey Institute of Houndish Art. For those of you who enjoy these visits, I am pleased to tell you that you will soon also be able to find the entire collection duplicated (along with my expert commentary) at a separate single blog site devoted to the Institute: http://wimseyhoundart.blogspot.com. And I am also considering a line of t-shirts to show off the masterworks from the Institute’s collection. I bet Philippe de Montebello doesn’t have t-shirts (I bet he doesn’t even own one, either!)

But now we turn our attention to a painting that I am sure M. de Montebello, as chief curator of the Met, is well familiar with: Portrait of a Woman, (probably of the Van Beresteyn family), (Rembrandt, 1632, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York). Rembrandt painted this striking portrait when he was a young man and just beginning to perfect the golden tones with which he imbued his art. (The Van Beresteyns, by the way, were one of the ruling families of the city of Haarlem ((the city after which New York’s Harlem was named!)) with an interest in art). Nevertheless we can see the master’s hand at work in the golden threads of the lady’s garment and especially in the texture of her extravagant ruff.. Now when it comes to extravagant ruffs I didn’t think there was any way to top mine (my humans frequently comment on the distinguished Elizabethan air my ruff imparts) but I think that I look devilishly handsome in this artificial version which really enlivens the plainness of the portrait. The lady is indeed very somber, but with the insertion of a fine baroque Hound we at least know that she is not, nor likely to be, lonely. See how the burnished golden undertones tones of this magnificent Hound’s coat contrasts with and enhances Rembrandt’s fine treatment of the black gown! Wimsey With a Ruff.

Well I hope you all have a pleasant weekend. And if you are in the Theater District this Saturday at 3:30-6:30 drop by the Broadway Barks event at Shubert Alley hosted by Bernadette Peters and Mary Tyler Moore and the casts of all the Broadway shows. It is an annual free event to help homeless animals and as I generously donate Elizabeth’s time to the ASPCA she may be in attendance as well.

Until next time,

Wimsey, New York’s ruff rock star
(this is the precinct I am always trying to sneak into! They serve and protect. I lounge and play)









4 comments:

Biggie-Z said...

Wimsey, I am totally with you on the Doppler rader pre-walks. My Momma is always talking about Scentral Park and I never manage to go there because we have outdoor showers instead. I would be willing to go up there through the rain (it is so much cooler) but then my Momma says something about "wet T-shirt" and "can't see" and "drowned Blackberry," and back home we go. BOO.

P.S. When we meet someday at last, maybe we can both be blamed for some naughtiness. I think I'm almost as big as you. And I don't try to dominate BIG intact males.

Lindsay said...

Hey Wimsey. I sometimes think my mutt Ace has some bloodhound in him, although I am not sure. He is for sure lab, maybe great dane and some other kind of hound.

Princess, Tank and Isaac: The Newfs of Hazard said...

Hey Wimsey! Ruff life! You need to realize your human has joined a gang: The dopplergangers. That's big news and you'd better nip it in the butt. Our Dad's thinking of making T-shirts of us, too.

Jake of Florida said...

Wimsey,

We love your blog and gave you an award -- come check out our site to receive it.

Jake and Just Harry, two wirey boys from South Florida whose Mom is a former New Yorker!!!