September 8, 2012
Hello Everyone, Wimsey here coming to you from Manhattan’s Upper West Side where Labor Day not withstanding we are still having summery weather that is not to my liking. I have been forcing my human Maria and her friend Elizabeth to run their air conditioners non-stop for my comfort, thus making my carbon foot print pretty much like my regular one—large and expensive (see: vet visits for lick granuloma). But of course I do return recycled organic matter to the earth at very frequent intervals and in great profusion so I think Mother Nature and I are all square.
And speaking of hot and sunny afternoons, Elizabeth, who is in charge of these outings on weekdays, has begun to suspect that perhaps I am a Hound Vampire since I am disinclined to risk exposure to even the merest sliver of sunlight. I am quite adept at hugging buildings, slinking under bushes and darting between trees to avoid being touched by even a single ray of the summer sun lest I either turn to dust or get too hot. Either way an undesirable outcome for a Hound devoted to his own comfort. Nevertheless, my humans did some research and have been evaluating my vampire potential:
Evidence for the Existence of Vampire Wimsey
Fangs (kept in top condition by daily tooth brushing with peanut butter toothpaste)
Pale skin (cleverly disguised by dense black and tan fur but which is readily discernible during my frequent roll overs for belly rubs)
Heightened senses (particularly those triggered by the opening of the refrigerator door, the proximity of a gelato shop, the presence of Pluto the French bulldog or someone carrying a hot dog or other comestible in a careless manner)
Unaccountable strength (the uncanny ability to tow two screaming humans in directions that they don’t want to go, like into the Central Park Lake)
Often feels hungry despite an adequate diet (especially when in the presence of humans trying to enjoy a meal)
Extreme cravings for certain types of food (yours)
Often feels fatigued and tired despite adequate food and activity level (as evinced by my need to sprawl out in the middle of the kitchen when anyone needs to use it)
Able to heal quicker than others (generally an hour before a visit to the vet)
No reflection (when looking into a mirror another dog appears instead)
Strong willed, independent, confident nature (no comment)
Intellectual, highly intelligent (about anything that matters to me; about anything that matters to you, not so much)
Predatory nature (persistent belief that despite weighing 125lbs can I sneak up on a squirrel undetected)
Moody (can go from loud greeting bay to demanding gimme that bay to I want to inhale small dog bay in a matter of seconds)
Nocturnal nature (requires frequent loud drinks of water, crunchy kibble snacks and drool dispensing ear flapping throughout the night; when staying with Elizabeth also conducts bed checks to make sure she hasn’t escaped because I know that she wants to)
Telepathy (ability to make humans transfer food from their plates to my jaws)
Mind reading (knowing when a bath is being contemplated and taking evasive counter measures; see also, disappearing)
Reading auras (can detect petting and food sharing auras emitted by complete strangers over long distances and tow thither)
Clairvoyance (being able to predict that there is a loud, high-pitched squeaky tennis ball in the future of any human attempting to use the telephone).
So pretty much I am probably a regular vampire as opposed to just being the time stealing kind that my humans always accuse me of. It’s true that I don’t bite my humans and suck their blood but I do take a big bite out of their bank accounts and suck out the contents which I think amounts to pretty much the same thing.
But speaking of ways to spend my humans’ cash, this Sunday we visited the Grom Gelato cart outside of Central Park for the first time! And as usual, I cooled down with a frosty cup of vanilla, delicately spoon fed to me for my maximum consumption pleasure and for the maximum amount of ridicule from passersby. The guy manning the cart kept explaining to Elizabeth that she could have two flavors in the cup and his surprise at her sticking to vanilla was only surpassed by that of seeing the purpose to which the gelato was put. I expect that working on a street in New York City he thought that he had seen it all but apparently not as measured by the depth of his jaw drop whilst watching me being fed. Of course the gelatoistas on the West Side are used to seeing their artisanal, hand crafted product being spooned down my gullet but this was clearly a first for the cart guys. And if I have anything to say it won’t be the last.
And although it’s been a quiet week around here it’s at least been a satisfactory one from a culinary point of view---in addition to the aforementioned gelato I’ve had everything from leftover baked yams to the turkey hero Elizabeth didn’t have time to eat when she rushed off to a conference. I hate to see food go to waste—we Hounds are very public spirited like that.
And although no turkey heroes were involved, my afternoon walk Thursday was especially entertaining; Elizabeth had just come from the dentist under the influence of the 10mg of Valium that they gave her because, although large shelter dogs with bad attitudes don’t seem to trouble her, men in white coats with drills do. It was all “Sure Wimsey go ahead and have that piece of pizza lying in the street,” and “I can’t seem to find your spit rag but I’m sure no one minds you flinging drool on them” and “Any direction that you want to go in is fine with me.” Of course then we went back to her apartment and she took a long nap which was very annoying as I am the only one permitted to take long naps. What happens if I need to be scratched when I wake up?
Anyway, this week saw the political conventions of both parties and although I am not a political Hound, as I am strictly interested only in myself and not anything humans get up to (unless they decided to tax Hounds, although we are generally considered plenty taxing all on our own), it seems an opportune time to retell the story of my meeting with Mitt Romney.
It was in May 2008 when the Republican primary was over and I was as usual perambulating about Central Park taking the air and entertaining the tourists. Elizabeth and I were just coming up the path to the Delacorte Theater when this man and a large group of humans of various ages and sizes came running over to meet, admire and pet me. Drool was dispensed, babies were dandled and everyone was pretty excited to touch, stoke and coo at me—in short, business as usual.
Now Elizabeth, who frankly has a terrible memory for faces not belonging to canines, was aware that the guy looked vaguely familiar and quickly decided that he was probably one of her portfolio manager clients from her days on Wall Street. She was worried that he would know her but she wouldn’t know him which was always embarrassing. But after another look, the ever astute Elizabeth decided that the guy was probably an actor, maybe in a soap opera, because he had that perfect look that only actors (or at least those not accompanied by Hounds) can achieve. The square jaw, the immaculate hair, the pressed, pristine clothing untouched (at least before he met me) of any dirt or grime. She was quite pleased with herself that she had at last recognized a celebrity when Maria caught us up after they left and hissed at her that it was Mitt Romney. Ooops. Let’s hope that Elizabeth does better if we ever meet the Obamas. As a non-partisan Hound I have been offering to personally deliver a case of my Baying Hound Ale to the White House but so far there have been no takers. I guess there is nothing that makes a president or a presidential candidate look more non-presidential than being slimed upon and bayed at by a large, forceful Hound.
Of course a bloodhound in the White House would bring a whole new meaning to the concept of presidential service and ensure that no president abused his powers—that privilege belongs only to Hounds. And although the presence of a bloodhound in the White House would call into question the incumbent’s sanity I think it would certainly make for a more colorful administration and keep the nation entertained as well. As the saying goes, “no man is a hero to his valet and all heroes are valets to their Hounds.”
Anyway, I think I will leave it there for this week. Am looking forward to transitioning from Vampire Wimsey to Abominable Snow Man Wimsey.
Until next time,
Wimsey, Hail to the Chief (Hound)