November 6, 2009
Hello Everyone, it’s me Wimsey coming to you from my personal fiefdom of Houndistan on Hudson, otherwise known as New York City’s Upper West Side, where this week my human Maria and her friend Elizabeth escorted me to view the New York City Marathon!
More about my exciting Sunday adventures in a minute, but first an update on the Disney Hat Modeling situation. If you saw last week’s post you know that I was coerced into modeling a Mickey Mouse hat owing to the fact that Elizabeth had been to Orlando. My humans were hoping that this week Elizabeth could photograph me wearing an even sillier hat once she was able to attach elastic straps. Well it turns out that, elastic straps or no, I am so much enamored of this new hat and have evinced such a frenzied desire to play (shred) with it that for the nonce it is of necessity sequestered on a high shelf in Elizabeth’s coat closet. This new episode of Disney Hat Modeling is clearly going to be a two human operation and when it occurs I plan on making last Christmas’ Santa Hat Modeling session look like a walk in the park by comparison. So stay tuned.
And speaking of walks (or more accurately tows) in the park, this week’s four hour Sunday extravaganza was so incredibly fun (at least for me) that it has been documented with an unusually large number of photographs which I hope you will enjoy viewing. Usually a picture is worth a thousand words but as I am a rather chatty kind of a Hound you get the thousand words as well.
So first of all, I knew Sunday was gong to be a great day because on the way to the park I ran into one of my good buddies of the constabular persuasion, Officer Wendt. Now in addition to keeping New York City streets safe for New York’s law abiding citizens Officer Wendt also keeps the 20th precinct safe from invasive, drool flinging, uniform smearing Hounds such as myself. Here you see me on one of my many reconnaissance missions casing the joint for future expeditions all the while being held under close surveillance by this diligent officer.
Well as if that were not exciting enough, Sunday was the New York City Marathon—a day whose public festivity is substantially enhanced by the presence of some of the finest distance running athletes, professional and amateur, from all around the globe. As a fine distance towing athlete myself, I am of course a big fan of the Marathon. I want my humans to get one of those devices that will tell them exactly how many miles I tow but they are afraid of what it would show. Apparently, after all having frequently wondered what would possess someone to voluntarily run twenty six miles they greatly fear that the device would make them wonder what would possess them to let me tow them twenty six miles. And instead of the plaudits that conventional marathoners receive, my humans get people laughing at them and asking who is walking whom (all except the Hound people who already know the answer to that question).
Anyway, we started off on Sunday going north on Central Park West as my usual park entrance was closed. And as we progressed up the avenue I noticed a truly impressive number of languages being spoken. Fortunately, everyone also spoke Hound and I was much admired and photographed by this international crowd of well wishers. I am sure the pleasure that they all felt in seeing their friends and family complete an amazing feat of endurance was greatly enhanced by meeting me. (Of course living with me is also a great feat of endurance but, sadly for my humans, I am still always the one who is on the receiving end of the admiration). But I digress. When we got to the next park entrance we found that there was a police barricade at that entrance also, but fortunately I was recognized by some of the officers (“Hey that’s the dog that’s always hanging around the precinct!”) and I was immediately escorted through the barrier. Having friends in blue is almost as good as having friends in black and tan.
And of course no large public event would be complete without the presence of New York’s mounted police. As you can well imagine, for me, the combination of police officers + horses=ecstasy, as in addition to my well known fondness for New York’s finest, I am also a devote of all thing equine—especially those mounds of delicious snacks they leave behind.
Well finally as we walked along the bridle path we were able to actually view the runners. This interested me greatly—the noise, the smells the excitement—and I generously bayed my approbation at them. I notice that people seem to run a whole lot faster when there is a very large Hound baying at them so I am sure that I was able to improve their running times substantially.
But we Hounds are also expert marathoners:
Hamper Marathon: Medal awarded for the maximum amount of time a Hound can stay in possession of a pair of purloined panties.
Sit Stay Marathon: A test of the maximum number of times a human can issue obedience commands with absolutely no result.
Bed Hogging Marathon: Longest number of hours a Hound can command the majority of space on a bed. An extra medal awarded for loud snoring and the actual shoving off of a human.
Digging a Hole to China Marathon: Medal awarded for greatest amount of soil displaced in a single digging expedition. A companion medal to:
The Frederick Law Olmstead/Calvin Vaux Marathon: Largest number of plants, flowers, shrubs, vegetable gardens, etc. dug up in the shortest amount of time.
Food Hawking Marathon: Medal awarded for fastest times in acquiring and hawking down the greatest number of unauthorized and illicit food items.
The “I’ll Go My Way and You’ll Go My Way Too” Marathon: Medal awarded for persistence in dragging humans in directions in which they had no intention of going.
The Bay Watch Marathon: Medal awarded for the longest amount of time furiously baying at exactly the same person, object, animal, activity, etc. (bikinis optional).
The Mule vs. Hound Marathon: A lifetime contest definitively proving that the mule is not the world’s stubbornest animal.
Anyway, finally we left the marathoners behind and set off on our own four hour mini-marathon in the northern part of the park where the autumnal serenity was spectacular. However, it did seem as though I had to be photographed in front of every colorful tree--autumn being almost as bad in this regard as the dreaded flowering tree season. I swear my humans know the trees so well by now that they probably have names for all of them. I too have names for all of them-- the large tree I like to pee on, the even larger tree I like to pee on, the tree with the bent branched that I like to pee on, the tree with all the acorns that I like to pee on, the skinny tree next to the bush that I like to pee on, etc. It is abundantly clear that trees along with their resident squirrels were put on this earth for the edification of the Hound.
Well just when I thought the day couldn’t get any better, on our way home the nice lady in the Malin+Goetz luxury personal care products boutique invited me in to do a little shopping (I refer you blog post #125 for a description of the Malin+Goetz+ Wimsey product line). And of course what shopping expedition would be complete without a break for a belly rub. I was, however, not permitted to put my paws up on the counter as there were candles burning there and although my humans were resigned to me sliming the pristine premises they drew the line at me actually burning the place down.
So after this great Sunday, how could the week get any better? Well it turns out that I have magical powers. If I want something all I have to do is stare at it fixedly or bay at it and it suddenly becomes mine. Like on Tuesday when I was strolling back to Elizabeth’s with the utmost lack of speed as is my usual end of the walk custom, when we ran into one of my ardent neighborhood admirers. As we approached it became apparent that the woman was not only sitting on her stoop enjoying the fine weather but she was also enjoying a roast beef sandwich-- an experience I profoundly believe ought to be shared. So I merely sat down next to her, projected an intense and worshipful admiration of this roast beef sandwich until she asked Elizabeth “Oh, does Wimsey want this sandwich?” Elizabeth, perspicaciously opined that yes, indeed, Wimsey does probably want the sandwich (no flies on her, although plenty of Hound hair). It was quite delicious and then afterwards I was petted, scratched and rubbed in a most exhaustive and pleasing manner (all the while avoiding the actual end of the walk), so yes, things can always get better.
Of course then next day I also engaged in some energetic baying in pursuit of someone’s hot dog but they turned out not to have as generous a nature as most New Yorkers. For instance, yesterday as I was lounging about Bethesda Fountain posing handsomely for tourist’s photographs, I encountered this lady (we had actually run into her the day before when she also took some pictures of me) and her soft pretzel. A few judicious bays were all it took and she was quite happy to share her pretzel with me. New Yorkers are known for their sophisticated appreciation of the finer things in life and I must say, their taste in Hounds (and food) is impeccable.
Anyway, I am really enjoying the beautiful autumn weather we are having here and especially the abundance of leaves which even when dry can be surprisingly slippery (not for me of course) which only adds to the frisky fun. My humans are convinced that I am deliberately trying to injure them. This is completely untrue of course—the injuring of them is an entirely unexpected fringe benefit.
Well I think that about wraps it up for this week. I must prepare for my next marathon—the one I like to call “so you think you can do that while I am around?”
Until next time,
Wimsey, Marathon Hound
Thursday, November 5, 2009
Posted by Wimsey at 4:00 PM