March 13, 2009
Hello Everyone. It’s me, Wimsey, coming to you on this lucky (you’re spending time with me, aren’t you?) Friday 13th from Manhattan’s Upper West Side where Spring is starting to make itself felt on the island’s frozen denizens. I know Spring is coming when my human Maria and her friend Elizabeth stop complaining about being cold and wet and start complaining about being wet and muddy.
Wimsey’s Signs of Spring
My pee doesn’t freeze or steam
There is an increase in the number of daylight hours available for long distance tows
Baby squirrels begin to appear who I hope may be unaware of the necessity for taking rapid action when charged by a large snorting Hound
My humans look like Michelin Men who have been to Jenny Craig
Elizabeth’s mud room (really the entryway to her apartment) begins to contain actual mud
The earth begins emitting nose riveting smells that add many interesting hours to my walks (at least for me. My humans on the other hand have taken to singing “Some Day My Hound Will Move” to the tune of “Some Day My Prince Will Come.”)
The bushes that I like to poop in the middle of commence sprouting scoop deterring leaves
My rate of drool production begins its steady climb towards its seasonal summer high
Expensive cups of Grom Gelato once again makes their appearance on The Wimsey Table de Hôte
Anyway, we had a very nice week considering that my humans have been spending so much time on their computers. They are producing a second grade version of Wimsey’s Guide to New York for Gus the arctic bloodhound’s human who is a teacher in Alaska. Of course I’m no expert, but teaching children that I sailed into New York Harbor with Henry Hudson and that I helped Peter Minuet buy Manhattan from the Indians might have a deleterious effect on their future SAT scores. But certainly Minuet’s buying Manhattan for $24 qualifies as one of the great New York real estate deals in history (who was the broker New Yorkers wonder) and is wholly consistent with our island’s reputation as the epicenter of high finance.
Of course high finance is not enjoying its finest hour these days and at least I can say that we Hounds are extremely honest thieves. We are very straightforward about what we steal and once stolen the stuff stays stolen. When a Hound steals from you there are no illusions that he is going to make you rich. No Ponzi schemes here. Rather, we impoverish humans in a highly principled manner. I really don’t think that we receive enough credit for this, so the next time your shoes go missing or that roast beef sandwich you left on the kitchen counter vanishes, give your Hound a nice pat on the head—and be grateful that he’s not trading your stuff to the Labrador down the street for a bunch of stuffed woodchucks.
But really the economy in general is in terrible shape. I think it’s time decisive action was taken:
The Meeting of the H-23
Anderson Cooper: Hello and thank you for joining us. I am Anderson Cooper and I am joined by my colleague Wolf Blitzer to cover this historic meeting of the H-23.
Wolf Blitzer: I thought we were supposed to be covering the G-8. Did somebody get all these numbers and letters confused?
Anderson Cooper: There’s no mistake Wolf. The G-8 have been totally useless at solving the global economic crises so the H-23 is stepping in. They have called an emergency meeting with Wimsey chairing the session.
Wolf: Again! Wasn’t Wimsey the chairperson last year? I thought they were supposed to rotate.
Anderson: They are, but no one can get Wimsey off the chair. He is among the larger and heavier members of the hound group you know. The Wolfhound even threatened him with a shillelagh if he didn’t move but Wimsey just ate it up. Literally.
Wolf: Well I suppose it’s OK. At least we will all be able to hear him above the din but the camera crew always complain about what he does to their lenses. What are they going to talk about apart from their usual topic about how to make our lives more difficult?
Anderson: Well, as you know the world’s economy is in a terrible mess but this international group of Hounds believe they have a solution.
Wolf: But what can they do? I will grant you that for sheer power of destruction the H-23 has no equal, but the economy needs building.
Anderson: Apparently the H-23 are planning to generously place their considerable natural talents at the disposal of the world’s industries. Let’s listen.
Wimsey: I bay the meeting to order. You sight hounds—stop running around and take your seats.
Greyhound: When have you known Hounds to sit? However, we will take our seats—the cushions are very tasty.
Wimsey: I meant it metaphorically. I wouldn’t know about the cushions. Someone stole mine. Anyway, we now need volunteers to head up our industry groups. I call on that little noisy fellow with all the colors on his coat.
Beagle: The beagles will be in charge of supporting world agriculture and commodity prices. We pledge a massive escalation in our food stealing activities that should result in increased demand for a wide variety of foodstuffs. And even some non-foodstuffs. We are known as major supporters of the electronics industry and we will redouble our efforts to assist that critical sector.
Wimsey: Anything that involves beagles and eating is bound to be successful. Next I call on that funny looking shaggy fellow that everyone says is none too bright.
Afghan: I resent that. We Afghans are not dumb—we just elect not to overtax our small store of neurons. And we’re not the only ones in this group who operate on that principle either. Anyway, we Afghans intend to support small business by dramatically increasing the need for dry cleaning services. We will invade the closets! We will shed upon the upholstery! We will shed upon the rugs! The hirsute shall not be found wanting in this crisis of humankind! I call on my fellow Hounds, even those who are follicularly challenged, to join me in this heroic enterprise!
Wimsey: Very inspiring. I myself will support that and I also intend to lead the bloodhounds in an effort to bolster the construction industry. Did you know we can eat through dry wall when suitably motivated or merely just bored?
Ridgeback: And as another powerful Hound, the Ridgebacks will join you in your efforts to destroy homes. We also intend to trash automobiles to help out the car industry.
Wimsey: Yes, I have heard those car seats make pretty good eating. Whose next? S peak up little fellow, I can’t hear you!
Basenji: I said, I like to dig. We could help increase employment of gardeners and landscapers and increase sales at nurseries.
Dachshund: Us too! Us too!
Basset Hound: We volunteer also!
Wimsey: Excellent. Very public spirited, all of you. Now who wants to help support the textile and fashion industries?
Wolf: Wow look at the pandemonium!
Anderson: I think all the Hounds are eager to get in on that one. Such generosity brings tears to my eyes as I am sure it does to their humans. But really Hounds already make a substantial contribution to so many sectors of the economy—everything from the tranquilizers and gin that their humans need to calm their jangled nerves to the massive amounts of personal and household cleaning products they need to keep their homes habitable. And let us not forget all the bandages and nostrums needed to treat Hound inflicted injuries.
Wolf: Well they are certainly on a mission. I see the meeting has an observer.
Anderson: Yes, Wolf, he’s from Home Depot. He’s suggesting a new slogan to the Group: You Can Destroy It, We Can Help.
Well anyway, I think we Hounds are in unique position here to help out. So next time your Hound destroys something give him a nice belly rub and applaud his contribution to stimulating the economy.
What else happened? As usual this week we all spent Sunday afternoon in Central Park only the weather was so unseasonably warm that I found our expedition quite tiring-- although I did perk up when we met this guy who had a couple of Hounds—Hounds in New York being something that people generally admire you for having but would never dream of having themselves-- New Yorkers being partial to canines of a more tractable nature. But it’s always nice for my humans to chat with other Hound servants and compare notes as to the relative levels of noise, stink, drool and general indifference to obedience commands. And this Sunday promises to be another lovely day although plans are afoot to photograph me in my beret to help introduce my line of HoundArt T-shirts on my online store. I strenuously object to wearing my beret on my head and intend to wear it in my mouth. The ladies are already laying in an extra supply of bribing turkey to help the process along but one side effect of the turkey is the prodigious quantity of drool that is its natural result-- which is why slingers are always a prominent feature of my blog photos. This Sunday I also continued to demonstrate my public spirited nature by picking up plastic bottles carelessly discarded in the park. I even help dismember them to make them more recyclable. We Wimseys are very green.
Anyway, the other big news is that Thursday the 19th is my birthday! There is talk of making me a cream cake—I wonder if I can get Maria to hide a salmon in the middle of it. Elizabeth usually has salmon once a week and my share of it keeps expanding as she feels increasingly guilty about eating something that I enjoy so much. I tell her she’s on The Wimsey Diet. And also speaking of birthdays, I received these pictures of some of my little nieces and nephews. Aren’t they cute. But just remember what they will grow up into!
Well on that note let us mosey on over to the Institute of Houndish Art where we will take a look at a painting by the great French post-impressionist Paul Cezanne that is currently touring the world. The Smoker (Paul Cezanne, 1891, The Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg). Now when we look at this painting we can immediately see Cezanne’s focus on form and geometry as he depicts a smoker lost in his own thoughts. Cezanne was particularly interested in including objects seen from different points of view in a single painting. It is an intellectual idea whose natural end result lead to cubism where a picture is broken up into multiple planes and views, however puzzling they are to the casual observer. Anyway, in Cezanne’s original painting there is an empty spot on the couch next to the smoker making it look like something is missing. Something is missing—a magnificent Hound! See how the companionable Hound is joining his human in the enjoyment of a fine pipe. What a wonderful Hound he is! And see how his human appears to be gazing at his Hound with relaxed admiration just as Hounds should always be gazed at. Wimsey Smoker.
I think that is all for this week. I am off to munch on the roast chicken that Elizabeth saved me from last night’s dinner and to contemplate my next move to stimulate the economy.
Until next time,
Wimsey, America’s most stimulating Hound
Friday, March 13, 2009
Posted by Wimsey at 8:43 PM