January 13, 2012
Hello Everyone, it’s me Wimsey, coming to you from Manhattan’s Upper West Side where after some mild weather we are finally having some good old fashioned wintery bluster! I even saw a few snow flakes during today’s Central Park perambulation—a harbinger of things to come, I hope, as the joys of snow (at least for me) are almost equal to the joys of all the work snow makes for my human Maria and her friend Elizabeth.
First, they must suit up in the full Michelin Man Monty, replete with high traction boots and extensive layers of movement restricting clothing. Then they must pack up sets of crampons for use in the park to maximize the chances of getting out of there with a minimal number of bruises and broken bones—this is in addition to my cookies, a supply of bribing turkey and canteens of water lest I dehydrate in all the fun. Next, they have to suit me up in my elasticized, insulated and waterproof snowsuit (Aka “the Speedo”) no easy feat in a giant, rapidly moving Hound with a strong predilection for going commando. Then I have to be harnessed up and my paws sprayed with special paw spray to protect my delicate tootsies from succumbing to the vicissitudes of the ice and salt.
And of course after it is all over the process has to be repeated in reverse and I have to be thoroughly toweled off and fed a sustaining meal to replenish the energy that I’ve burned off. My humans also have to be toweled off but they prefer to drink a sustaining adult beverage to replenish the self-esteem that I’ve destroyed (there is something irresistibly entertaining to passersby about the sight of humans being dragged into snow banks by an irrepressible Hound).
Is it any wonder that winter is my favorite season!
But before I proceed any further, there will be no blog post next week and perhaps none the week after, depending on events, owing to a schedule conflict. Alas January brings my humans’ birthday season—Maria’s on January 18th and Elizabeth’s on January 21st and this year Elizabeth is jumping the pond to London and Oslo. Initially she was going to go dog sledding in the Norwegian arctic (we will say nothing about how her inability to control one mild-mannered Hound might not augur well for her ability to control a team of 6-12 robust huskies) but then some business turned up in London so she will just be in Oslo on a shopping spree devoted to the acquisition of warmer and more durable winter Hounding apparel. And if this trip is anything like her previous trips she will eschew museums and other high-minded cultural pursuits in favor of doing a tour of pet shops and dog bakeries. I am always with her whether I am physically present or not—mind control being one of the key principles of Houndism.
Anyway, it turns out that when Elizabeth looked in her closet to see what she might want to wear on her trip she was astounded to find that her wardrobe had insidiously morphed into racks of Hounding clothes—a vast collection of shirts, sweaters, trousers, coats, jackets, gloves and hats all with but a single purpose—the walking of me! It occurred to her that since she was not going dog sledding in the Arctic people in nice hotels might not find the sight of a baggy, smelly woman all that inviting so I have been cruelly left alone this week whilst she went off in search of actual normal, non-smelly (at least temporarily), non-baggy clothing. Her purchases are all now encased in many layers of plastic and locked away deep in her closet in the hopes of rendering them impermeable to my odor and drool (the odor being currently enhanced by a spot of anal gland trouble)—at least until she leaves. I really hate it when my humans wear clothing that doesn’t smell like me and does not bear my distinctive emblems of drool!
Consequently, it has been something of a quiet week around here; I was supposed to have a visit from my French bulldog puppy Pluto but he cancelled. Puppies are so unreliable—he probably preferred to stay home and chew up a good book instead. But at seven months, in spite of the vast differences in our size and appearance, he grows more like me each week—including mimicking my propensity (some would say talent) for developing annoying ailments requiring multiple vet visits. Last week he had an eye infection (one of my perennial favorites—nothing like the oozing of green goo to get the humans hopping) and also a worn down nail that bleeds (I’ve never tried that one, but I admire innovation, especially in one so young—he has a bright future).
And speaking of matters veterinary--owing to the renewed vigor of my anal glands I am once again on flagyl which means I am once again putting my flews to the use for which they were intended—hiding things from my humans. I have spoken many times about the various parts of my anatomy to which I am inordinately attached but I think I have given my flews short thrift:
Top Ten Things Flews are Good For
1. Hiding pills and other medicaments that one has appeared to swallow for later disposal in inconspicuous places, like the bed. The capaciousness of flews is such that even if they are inspected a small pill lodged expertly in a fold is likely to be overlooked.
2. The carrying of filthy tennis balls that one has retrieved from the park and desires to play with and dismember in the comfort of one’s own home. They are almost impossible to detect visually from the outside thus vastly reducing the risk of premature confiscation.
3. As a large reservoir for the copious amounts of drool that one always likes to have at one’s disposal for the purpose of flinging on unsuspecting persons. Preferably well-dressed unsuspecting persons.
4. As a caddy to ferry considerable quantities of water from one’s bowl to one’s humans for subsequent release onto the aforementioned. Preferably at night and preferably while they are asleep.
5. The secreting of chattels that one has been interrupted in the process of stealing and for which one’s human has begun to search.
6. The secreting of a chicken leg or a steak that one has lifted from the kitchen counter that one would prefer to eat peacefully in one’s bed, in one’s human’s bed or hiding behind the couch.
7. For the transport of fragrant organic matter of indeterminate origin from the outdoors to the indoors for subsequent dispersal on the walls, ceilings, furniture and heirloom oriental carpet.
8. As the fountainhead for the creation of appetizing drool stalactites that one likes to produce in front of people trying to eat in outdoor cafes and at dinner tables in order to make known one’s desire to share in the bounty and to encourage generous activities thereof.
9. To induce panic in one’s human at one’s apparent ingestion of dangerous materials such as chicken bones or television remotes that one has merely tucked away for safekeeping.
10. To make one look unbearably cute when one splays them out in a skate-like configuration while napping in a spot that one is not supposed to be napping in causing humans to allow you undisturbed rest and to buy you a present instead of scolding you and to also ignore the fact that you are a voracious and unrepentant thief of their money, time and possessions.
But really the best thing about flews is that humans don’t have them and like our finely honed sense of smell, they define the superior design of The Hound.
Well I think I will leave it there for this week. But before I go I would be remiss in not mentioning that on this day in 1559 Elizabeth’s favorite Tudor, Elizabeth I was crowned in Westminster Abbey. Those of you who read this blog regularly know that Maria and I have had to endure interminable lectures on Tudor history (and sadly not the racy TV show either) owing to her fascination. And as everyone knows the (alleged) Virgin Queen (Robert Dudley was pretty hot) refused to have a husband because she would not be ruled. And although one can truly admire this Hound-like sentiment, papers from my Tudor ancestor, Sir Edmund Wimsey, reveal that in fact there was (seldom) any room in her bed for anyone other than her sprawling, snoring Hound. So while Elizabeth was a source of awe and reverence to her subjects to her Hound she was just one more human source of belly rubs, toys, bones and of course awe and reverence. Hounds are like that. We’re kind of like that popular kid in high school that everyone wants to be around but nobody knows why.
Anyway, I hope you all survived this Friday 13th. My piece of bad luck was the human lack of interest in having me jump in the Central Park Lake to get better acquainted with the large number of ducks and geese congregating there today. But tomorrow is the 14th…
Until next time,
Wimsey, flewsie extraordinaire