June 26, 2009
Hello Everyone. It’s me Wimsey coming to you from my perch in front of the air conditioner on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. Well the City continues to feel as if it is in the grip of some cosmic humidifier—all very nice if you happen to be a capybara or some other beast of the jungle but pretty terrible if you happen to be a sensitive Hound like myself. Even my human Maria and her friend Elizabeth are wilting under this wave of airborne moisture. And the air conditioners in both their apartments have to run non-stop when I am in residence lest I not be able to nap in the perfect comfort to which I am entitled. Everybody is pointing fingers and talking about such things as persistent upper level lows or stagnant jet streams but I am pretty sure my humans are to blame—any being capable of tormenting me with ear cleaning solution is more than capable of ushering in noxious weather.
Evil Things My Humans Do
Insist in sleeping on my bed
Never want to spend more than 5 hours at a time walking in the park
Impede my hunting of succulent looking raccoons and ducks
Forbid me from jumping into the lakes and fountains of Central Park even when the weather conditions are clearly conducive to doing so
Resist my subtle daily requests for tuna fish sandwiches at the Loeb Boat House Café
Decline my invitations to stop by the Boat Basin café and drink beer at odd hours so I can lie down on the cold stone floor and get fed biscuits by the staff
Eat too much food thereby creating a shortage of leftovers
Refuse to run down the stairs to keep up with me
Insist that I wear a gentle leader while I am going down the stairs because they have a foolish fear of injury
Pick up the poop that I have spent hours carefully finding just the right spot for
Sit in front of the computer
Block my ambitions to hang out at the 20th precinct
Never allow me to hop into people’s taxis
But things on the ear cleaning front have been looking up. Elizabeth, who clearly has far too much time on her hands (as evidenced by her compulsive shopping for new products, such as a raincoat, for me) has begun a new system of ear toilette before she comes and takes me out for my afternoon walk. She is testing the R-7 ear cleaning system which is a big improvement over having stuff poured down my ear (not that I permit this—the closest my humans get is to squeeze cotton pads saturated with the liquid into the ear. But they have to catch me first.). Anyway the R-7 system seems to be reducing the ear gunk and itching but I will let you know. Chronically gunky ears are the price we Hounds pay for our luxurious free swinging auricular appendages.
And in spite of the unpleasant weather I continue on my mission to entertain tourists—lately I have attracted the notice of the pedicab operators who seem to be on the lookout for me in order to have their clients take souvenir pictures of themselves with yours truly. Maybe one day there will be a statue of me in the park like the one they have of Balto. The plaque would read:
Wimsey: Bloodhound of Manhattan who heroically allowed himself to be photographed, fed, fondled, petted, fawned over, canoodled with, belly rubbed, admired, cooed at, raved about, kissed, played with and idolized by tourists from around the world.
Now I know I have written about the mesmerizing effect I have on people on the street (also on this butterfly which kept insisting on hitching a ride) but the humor of some of these mesmerizing experiences doesn’t really translate into the written word-- like the fellow who, in mid-cell phone conversation, looked at me and emitted a booming “HEEE HEEE HEEE HEE!” and then went back to his conversation. You just had to be there.
But I am also my extending my mesmerizing influence to local merchants. For instance, not only do I patronize Grom Gelato (gelato to the dog stars) but I aspire to visit a new natural products toiletries shop called Malin +Goetz that has recently opened on my corner. The folks inside are always very pleased to see me—albeit at a distance given what I could do to their shop in the course of giving it a good sniff. They generally know I am around because I usually bay at the traffic light across the street from them in order to encourage it to change. (It is a little known fact that baying at New York City traffic lights causes them to rapidly change from red to green). Anyway, I am sure my humans are thinking about whether a jojoba face scrub might keep me from importing bits and pieces of Central Park into their respective apartments or whether perhaps I might find a eucalyptus body wash refreshing. It would certainly make a change from being bathed with something called The Grimeinator. Why can’t Hound products have nicer names?:
Malin + Goetz + Wimsey
Organic Crème de Canard Dental Cleansing System
Pro-Rides Replenishing Facial Masque—encouragement de deep and luxurious wrinkles
Snood de Soie luxe ear protectors
Refreshing Citrus Contra Mycose Ear Wash
Mint Dentifrice Spray de Bouche for minty fresh drool
Polished Obsidian Vanishing Atoll Ear Weights (for the Hound who desires that extra bit of length)
Huile d’Avocat Pad Moisturizing and Toning Mousse
Self Rotating Malaysian Plantation Massage and Grooming System (formerly known as the Zoom Groom)
Gentle Deep Wrinkle Rosemary Cleanser
Vitamin E West Indian Mahogany Oil Coat Burnishing Spray
Soothing Peppermint Belly Massage Essence
Deep Cleaning Rainforest Shampooing (made with real endangered species!)
Polynesian Coat Replenishing Serum (for the bit that got chewed off in the dog park)
Detox Hound-- Hand Cultivated Pomegranate Air Renewal System
Systeme Relaxante Contre Hound (formerly known as the caipirinha--available in sizes grande, super grande and comatose).
As to this latter product, my humans heartily recommend it for smoothing out the rough edges of the calumnies and humiliations that occur in a day spent with a Hound. After one it is all “Wimsey’s really not so bad.” After two it is “Isn’t Wimsey a lovely Hound.” Three is not advisable as it results in “Hound. What Hound? I don’t see a Hound.” Who knew the waters of the Lethe were available for purchase at Beacon Wine and Spirits.
Anyway, I am sure my humans will be popping into Malin and Goetz to test out some of their lovely sounding products (any store that features neighborhood dogs on their website deserves to be patronized).
And speaking of testing, I have indeed been wearing my Ruff Wear Swamp Cooler cooling coat and I think it definitely helps me stay more comfortable. I would prefer to be testing it in dry hot sunny weather rather than in cooler humid conditions but the New York City weather gods have not been cooperating. At the very least I think I look fantastically elegant in the coat and if a bloodhound in the middle of Manhattan is not conversation piece enough try a bloodhound in the middle of Manhattan wearing a cooling coat. So for all you big hunky Hounds out there (large animals retain more heat than smaller ones) you might want to give it a go.
Well this week we formally moved into summer and so once again the film industry is hoping to make movies that people actually want to see. So here is my summer movie list:
Imagine That: A fantasy film in which a human walks a Hound and it heels.
Away We Go: A Hound who has spent too many hours indoors is leashed up. Hilarity ensues.
Moon: A guy spends far to much time putzing about on the moon mining a gas that will solve the earth’s energy problem. A much cheaper alternative is found by harnessing the intestinal power of a pack of Hounds who have been snacking on foie gras with cream sauce.
Angels and Demons: A beautiful physicist, (physicists being among the world’s most beautiful people) and some esoteric idiot attempt to track down a secret society of Hounds, The Destructarati, by tracking clues left in their poop. The Society is kidnapping well behaved hounds who they consider freaks of nature and turning them back into their more familiar demonic form.
The Proposal: In this love story an overbearing boss is about to be deported and proposes that her assistant marry her. He agrees because he has no spine and there are simply no other jobs on the face of the planet but then he falls in love with her Hound and forgets all about the fact that he has to be married to such an unpleasant person. The Hound and the assistant live happily every after.
Night at the Museum: An inept security guard decides to let a Hound keep him company during the night shift at the Smithsonian. While he fantasizes about the exhibits coming to life the Hound chews up precious artifacts. There is a reason why Hounds are not permitted in museums.
Whatever Works: A desperate man is willing to try whatever works to control and train his Hound. Nothing ever does.
Up: Another desperate Hound owner flies away to a magical land where all possessions are placed out of reach of Hounds. The resourceful Hounds, however, illustrate why the movie should really be called Down.
Year One: A nightmare odyssey through the first year in the life of a Hound puppy. The Hound’s owner tries to stay calm by watching Biblical comedies until the Hound eats the DVD player.
Hangover: After babysitting a friend’s Hound for an entire weekend a human understandably reaches for the gin bottle one too many times.
Well I think it is time we scooted over to the Wimsey Institute of Houndish Art where we continue our exploration of the art of the 2nd grade class at the Denali Elementary School in Fairbanks, Alaska. I am quite partial to these works of art and the fact that they happen to be all about me has absolutely nothing to do with it.
Our first artist is Alexis and her piece, Wimsey in the Park and the Owner Dropped the Leash is notable for its dramatic vertical composition and for its strong element of fantasy: this off leash fictional Wimsey stands perfectly still under the tree and has not run off into the next county on the trail of something juicy, mobile and only questionably edible. We also note the emphasis on my black saddle and deep forehead wrinkle. The artist has added further interest to the composition of the piece through the use of a yellow triangular arrangement of bird, flower and sun, placing my head in the same plane as the bird and the flower to emphasize its appeal. A very compositionally sophisticated work for so young an artist.
Our next artist, Gaby, presents us with a Matisse inspired work, I Am Throwing a Frisbee and Wimsey is Catching It and Gus is Watching Him. The Gus in question refers to Gus, a bloodhound of Fairbanks, Alaska who I have never actually met but whose antics I have admired from afar. The moniker of his younger years—“Satan in a Puppy Suit” should give you some idea. Anyway here we have a picture that is a veritable riot of color, rhythm and joy-- from the big smile on the face of the human figure to the outstretched limbs of the stylized Wimsey. The artist has filled the work with an intensely rhythmic blue sky and the three figures seem caught in mid frolic, reminiscent of Matisse’s “Dance.” The figures look out at us as if asking the viewer to join them in their revels. Altogether a delightful piece of art.
Well that is all for this week—I am off to begin formulating the Wimsey Spa line of canine luxury toiletries (although nothing could really make us more beautiful than we already are).
Until next time,
Wimsey, New York’s Finest (Hound)
Friday, June 26, 2009
Posted by Wimsey at 8:40 PM