Friday, October 17, 2008

Wimsey's Blog: Diary of a Manhattan Bloodhound

Entry # 89
October 17, 2008

Hello Everyone, Wimsey here coming to you from Houndistan on Hudson, otherwise known as Manhattan’s Upper West Side. Well after a brief bit of Indian summer the leaves are finally beginning to assume their customary autumnal palette and my human Maria and her friend Elizabeth are all about leaf peeping. I myself am all about leaf peeing which is an entirely different matter and much more enjoyable. And as we know the autumn weather inculcates in me an incredibly frisky attitude which inculcates in my humans an incredibly injured attitude. And where Hound injuries exist can Sir Isaac Newton, who is ultimately responsible for them, be far behind? In fact, I have recently uncovered a new translation of Newton’s famous three laws compiled by my ancestor Euclid Wimsey:

Newton’s First Law: Every object in a state of uniform motion tends to remain in that state of motion unless an external force is applied to it.

Translation of Newton’s First Law: When in a park a Hound tends to remain in a park unless dragged out baying furiously by several strong humans.

Newton’s Second Law: The relationship between an object's mass m, its acceleration a, and the applied force F is F = ma. Acceleration and force are vectors and the direction of the force vector is the same as the direction of the acceleration vector.

Translation of Newton’s Second Law: Holding onto the leash of a large Hound on a loose leash in the presence of a squirrel will result in a traumatic injury to the shoulder whose dislocation will occur in the same direction as that of the retreating squirrel.

Newton’s Third Law: For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.

Translation of Newton’s Third Law: What ever you want your Hound to do, he will do the opposite.

Now I have been applying Newton’s Laws since I was a mere pup (OK, not really “mere” since there is nothing really unsubstantial about a Hound at any age) and have done many interesting physics experiments (usually to the detriment of my humans). And consequently my humans are often forced to employ creative counter measures worthy of Hulk Hogan in their defense. Now just this week an old friend of Maria’s dropped by for a chat. The chap in question happened to be wearing a suit (he hadn’t seen me since I was a puppy, otherwise he would have known better) and Maria was doing her level (and horizontal) best to keep my inquisitive nose and its attendant drool away from the fine Italian wool with which he was caparisoned. Unfortunately at some point this necessitated putting me in headlock. T his occurred around about the time the guest inquired whether Maria was dating anyone. When she replied in the negative, he wanted to know why not. Now Maria gets asked this question quite a bit but I have to say seldom whilst in the act of restraining me in a headlock. Far be it from me to cast aspersions on the perspicacity of Maria’s friends, but it would seem to me that, no matter how attractive, a woman is, if she needs to be forcibly restraining her large, smelly Hound in a headlock in order to engage in polite conversation, the answer would appear to be entirely self explanatory. I doubt even Gisele Bundchen with a head locked Hound would be a very datable entity. And it’s not that I don’t try to introduce the ladies to as many men as possible—I pride myself on being an excellent wing man—but somehow when push comes to shove (quite literally) the guys generally go for women who harbor mammals of less gargantuan proportions. Well anyway, as Newton has nothing to say on the subject of evading headlocks the nicely dressed guest remained in pristine condition. But not to worry, I plan on getting him next time (assuming he is brave enough to essay another visit).

Well headlocks excepted, it has been quite a nice week here. Now last week I was blessed at the feast of St. Francis up at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine and it was such a lot of fun that on this Sunday’s Central Park tow I dragged my humans due north hoping to repeat the experience. My humans were extremely pleased at this new spiritual attitude (”Perhaps Wimsey will learn that it is better to give than to receive. Or maybe to just let us sit on a piece of the couch.”) but really I was thinking of all those smelly farm animals that they had on display at the ceremony. In any case we did not return to the cathedral (the Bishop is still probably trying to get the stain out of his cassock) but we did walk around a body of water known as the Harlem Meer. I observed a large flock of geese lounging on the water and before we passed Elizabeth was all “If Wimsey drags me into the water after the geese, don’t worry about me, just get it on video.” Now although dragging Elizabeth into the Harlem Meer in pursuit of the geese struck me as an excellent idea, the thought of providing yet another photo opportunity for my camera crazed humans left me cold. They are like my personal paparazzi and everywhere I go there is a camera stuck in my face. Generally I like to present my posterior on these occasions (“Wimsey is mooning the camera again” and “I don’t think Hounds moon; I think they tail”). Needless to say, the ladies have quite a collection of digitized views of the Wimsey butt. Alternatively I like to turn my face away from the camera. All of which means that the ladies frequently resort to teasing me with cookies to get my attention (then of course they get a fine collection of photos in which drool plays a prominent role, which they consider highly unaesthetic). Well having survived the potential Great Goose debacle, we were all peacefully hanging out at the adjacent Conservatory Garden (to which surprisingly dogs are allowed, although if I spend much time there this may change), when yet again the camera appeared. Below is what I think of it all. And bellow that is a magnificent close up of the inside of my mouth (even better than my tush!) as I grabbed the biscuit that was being quite irresponsibly brandished in front of my nose.

But mercifully this evening will be camera free as another episode of Wimsey Bath Night is firmly on the agenda (it having been deemed too risky to photograph me during these complicated ablutions). And as usual Elizabeth has stocked up on the cachaca for the making of post bath caipirinhas. Now caipirinhas are the national drink of Brazil but it is also the national drink of Wimsey—particularly on Bath Night where it is known as the Wimsey Bath Night Recovery Cocktail. After washing me the ladies are badly in need of a potent restorative as they emerge from the bathroom wet, sweaty and with bits of spiky Hound hair and errant pieces of bribing turkey clinging to their persons (no one asks them then how come they aren’t dating anyone). But their condition is nothing compared to the state to which Wimsey Bath Night reduces the bathroom—mounds of drenched hair encrusted towels (I don’t permit hair dryers), a flooded floor, a clogged bath tub and walls and ceiling alike decorated with a tasteful selection of Wimsey hair. All of which I leave for them to deal with whilst I serenely consume my cooked dinner and enjoy a leisurely chew on my bully stick. The caipirinha really should be renamed the Wimseyrinha.

Well it is time for another visit to the Wimsey Institute of Houndish Art and as has been our custom during this election season we are reviewing Great Moments in American History. Now no discussion of American History would be complete without a look at the tragedy of the Civil War. It was North Against South, brother against brother. And my family was no exception. Beauregard Wimsey, a Hound of Virginia squared off against his littermate Augustus van der Wimsey of New York (Augustus added the van der to the Wimsey name as he believed it better reflected his status as a New York City plutocrat). Now these brothers fought many battles, most notably at Little Round Top on the second day of the Battle of Gettysburg, and Beauregard became an adjutant to General Lee and Augustus served General Grant. Both were in charge of procuring provisions for their armies as it was believed that Hounds excelled at this task. Although the locals called it stealing the brothers considered that they were simple utilizing the gifts with which nature so richly endowed them in the service of their respective countries. But on April 3rd 1865 General Grant rapidly took Richmond (thus leading to the expression that a Hound can swipe your panties out of the laundry bin faster than Grant took Richmond) and on April 9th Lee surrendered: Surrender at Appomattox (Thomas Nast, 1895, Galena History Museum, Galena, Illinois). Grant, who hadn’t been expecting the surrender so quickly, was actually dressed in the uniform of a private with just his shoulder stripes to denote his rank while Lee was as usual the epitome of the gallant southern gentleman. The two men knew each other from the Mexican War and were chatting up a convivial storm when Beauregard and Augustus were forced to administer stern pokes in their fannies to return the generals to the subject at hand. And once peace was restored to the country the brothers too buried the hatchet (or bones in this case) and resumed their former amicable relations--although at the request of both generals the brothers continued to supply hard to find delicacies for their tables. No questions asked.

Well I think that I shall have to close now. But before I do I want to recommend two items indispensable to Houndly grooming (and not the kind I usually do with my tongue on my underside that my humans seem to find so yuck-worthy): The Zoom Groom (less than $10 at Petsmart) when rubbed vigorously back and forth across a dense short coat such as my own produces a great massage for me while producing copious amounts of flying fur for my humans. And for a (temporary) cessation of Houndly stink, The Grimeinator Shampoo which can be found at Cherrybrook , and which produces an irresistible urge on the part of my humans to snort and stroke my fur-- which is at least some compensation for the (temporary) destruction of my usual intoxicating aroma.

Until next time,

Wimsey, the (temporarily) clean


Bentley said...

Oh yes, I agree 100%! The Zoom Groom is wonderful. After you'd mentioned it before, my humans got one for me - wow, it feels so good.

The description of the shampoo is interesting - it says "Cleans the dirtiest, smelliest animals...." *blush* Does that mean hounds?

I'm a bit concerned about the part of the copy that says "...allows for everyday use", but I don't think my humans would ever try that, would they?

Anyway, Wimsey, hope you and your people have a good week. As always, there was laughter involved when the blog was read, and statements of agreement with the interpretations of Newtons laws.

Marmalade said...

Wimsey, I feel your pain about baths. My parents are lucky--we get washed in an enclosed shower stall, so it's no big deal to clean up after. Of course, we try to shake as much as possible to express our displeasure... Loved the head lock story. With regard to hounds and dating, when my Mom and Dad were first together, she took Dad home to Vancouver so that her dog at the time, Scooby the St. Bernard, could give his snort of approval. Well, Scoob saw Dad, took a sniff, lifted his paw and pushed him right over. He then proceeded to sit on Dad and lick him almost to death. Approval had been granted.

Lindsay said...

Hey, I liked your interpretation of Newton's Laws. I think you summed them up nicely and could've written them better yourself.