February 19, 2010
Hello everyone. It’s me Wimsey coming to you from Manhattan’s Upper West Side where my humans have been all agog at the goings on at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show which was held this week. S o many splendid canines and none of them acting like me. My human Maria tried to make her friend (and my handler) Elizabeth feel better by pointing out dogs that stack dance and dogs that gallop and dogs that try and put their noses down. But nobody but me has mastered the art of doing all these things at the same time. And my humans could not resist the myriad canine paraphernalia shopping opportunities. However, owing to the plethora of toys now clogging both my apartments, they bought more Griminator shampoo and discussed ordering a made to measure cooling/rain coat from Zentek Clothing for those sultry summer storms. Of course getting a made to measure coat implies the need for measurements and the need for measurements implies the need to catch me first.
Well in spite of not being able to disrupt the proceedings at Westminster this year, I got a bath anyway on Sunday which my humans claim was long overdue. Last time I was bathed I managed to lock us all in the bathroom so this time precautions were taken—a cell phone was placed in the medicine cabinet and the door was wedged open. Unfortunately the slightly open door made me think that a great escape was possible and consequently Maria had a tough job hanging on to me while stuffing turkey in my mouth. And of course post bath, the wetter I am the more imperative it is that I climb on the furniture. It was not until Elizabeth brought out my sheet nest (a pile of old sheets that I like to rearrange for my naps and which has the added benefit that Elizabeth always trips on it) that I calmed down and let the ladies sip their cocktails in peace.
And Sunday’s afternoon tow in Central Park was a very social affair as I met several interesting dogs, including this fuzzy 5 month old female Akita named Kismet. My humans got one picture of me rolling over and being polite which I promptly made up for by trying to thwack Kismet with my paw (my humans take a dim view of paw thwacking—at least as far as other dogs are concerned-- but every now and then I am able to sneak one in before they see it coming). Of course in a few months thwacking an Akita will not be such a good idea and will likely result in me getting eaten. And Kismet has not yet been spayed which made her especially alluring and caused a great deal of serenading (it was after all Valentine’s Day). I think an Akita-Bloodhound mix would be a formidable combo—a dog that not only steals but guards. I am frankly an anti-guarding kind of a guy—it would be all “See anything you like, it’s yours. Now, do you have a cookie?” But I am told that my size alone is enough of a deterrent to render any unpleasant guard dog duty unnecessary. Of course if someone wanted to make off with my stuffed dog that would be a whole other matter.
And speaking of size, I have used mine for some pretty effective towing during our evening walks. It turns out that snow traps intoxicating bi and quadripedal scents causing me to put my nose to the ground and take off at a furious pace. This results in much satisfying squealing and imploring. My humans have always thought that I would make an excellent trailing Hound--except of course that given my independent nature, instead of finding a lost child at the end of the trail they would find a raccoon. But snowfall creates an abundance of vertical surfaces--especially the Hound urinals humans create using big balls of snow that are clearly marked with funny hats and carrots sticking out of them. My humans call all the growing patches of yellow snow disgusting. I call them snow cones.
This winter is special, however, because we have the winter Olympics, although it seems the organizers did not select a venue that actually has a winter. Perhaps New York should host them then I could participate:
Hound Winter Olympics
Cross country: gold medal awarded to the Hound that causes their human to fall the most number of times. Hounds must exert exceptional pull weight while choosing the iciest line or the deepest snow. They must never deviate from their course no matter how much screaming they hear behind them.
Downhill: similar to cross country only terrifyingly steep inclines and sharp turns are added to the course. Gold awarded to the Hound who is able to deliver a prone and irate human to the finish line (bonus points if human needs medical attention).
Nordic combined: An event in which a Hound must furiously tow a human cross country while stopping to steal as many items as possible from passersby. Extra points awarded for snatching hot dogs.
Speed Skating: A beloved event where the fastest Hound to tow his human over a treacherous field of ice wins.
Figure Skating: The following of scent trails in patterns unfathomable to humans is no longer part of this event. Instead Hounds must execute an artistic and arm wrenching array of jumps, turns and spins while wearing sequins.
And then there are the exhibition sports:
Snow digging: Hounds kick as much snow as possible into their humans’ faces. Pooping first, optional.
Yellow snow eating: The Hound that finds and consumes the most mounds of yellow snow is the winner.
Long Track Peeing: A macho sport in which Hounds compete to see who can produce the greatest amount of arcing yellow snow meltage at the greatest distance. (human males like to do this too, they just don’t tell anybody).
Sliding: The Hound that can propel a human the furthest down an icy street sans benefit of a sled wins the gold.
Well anyway, the big news around here is the projected Springtime for Wimsey Road Trip which is turning into the kind royal progress best known to medieval and renaissance monarchs. First we are heading into the northernmost reaches of New York State to visit Maria’s mother—she whose enormous boxes of baked goods single handedly prevents us all from starving. She and I have never met. Hopefully she is a sturdy woman. And as befits someone with her culinary skill, she is already planning the menu. Accordingly, she has asked if there is anything Elizabeth doesn’t like. As Elizabeth is a specialist in can opener cuisine she’s looking forward to anything that actually comes from a stove. And of course Maria mère wants to prepare something special for me but as she is not likely to find fillet of squirrel in the local Safeway she was told I will eat what everyone else is eating. As the resident master sous chef I will of course be supervising all meal preparations to ensure that they conform to the high Wimsey standard and contain the maximum amount of dog hair.
After that we are heading off to Kalamazoo, Michigan to rendezvous at a dog show with one of my breeders. She has not seen me since I was a wee wiggly pup. I am still a wee wiggly pup, only now I weigh 130 pounds. Also I will get to meet my sister Dixie’s folks. Now it was suggested that we join them camping which caused Maria to immediately find the name of the nearest Best Western.
However, I am encouraging them to consider camping in the interest of cultural education, provided of course that I can share the tent. I mean what could be better than being holed up in a tent with a giant, drool producing (think Ghostbusters poltergeist), snoring Hound. But the whole getting out of New York thing is perplexing to my humans—people who wear clothes with colors in them and pumping gas and driving, etc. I myself love to drive-- I get to wear a black harness that makes me look like a canine S&M star and which is hooked to a zip line in the back seat. Fortunately the zip line does not impede me from periodically snuffling Elizabeth’s neck, resting my head on her shoulder or trying to poke my head out of her window while she is trying to drive. And being such a handsome guy I like to admire myself in the rear view mirror, which means that instead of seeing some boring traffic behind her she sees my majestic Hound head presented for her admiration. I am already counting the days. I am only hoping that my humans do not give serious thought to what it would be like to spend a week on the road with me and decide to drive to Brooklyn instead.
Well I think I will end here before I give my humans more food for thought. (the only kind of food they will ever get from me).
Until next time,