Friday, March 7, 2008

Wimsey's Blog: Diary of a Manhattan Bloodhound

Entry # 57
March 7, 2008

Hello Everyone. It’s me Wimsey and what a fine week I have had here in New York City. And there is still more to come as tonight is Wimsey Bath Night in honor of my being shown on Sunday—personally I think the natural fragrance of the Hound could only enhance my show ring charms but my human Maria and her friend Elizabeth disagree. So who am I to argue with fistfuls of in-bath turkey and a cooked dinner and a bully stick to follow? The ladies, as usual, will be swilling (or attempting to swill, as swilling can be difficult in the presence of a giant Hound nose) Elizabeth’s signature cocktail, the caipirnha. She even puts on Brazilian music to swill by. It’s just like being in Rio! (Without the hot weather, the sunshine the beach, the food and all the good looking men).

But the dog show means that I will miss my Sunday in the park this week. Last week’s expedition consisted of five—count ‘em—hours and was thoroughly enjoyable although
sadly it didn’t end up snowing. The fun began in the morning when Maria and I rendezvoused with Elizabeth at the coffee shop where she habitually ingests the massive amount of calories and caffeine that she claims are necessary for coping with me (or that’s her excuse, anyway—“Something about Wimsey always makes me reach for the Starbucks or the gin”). And of course when she emerges from the coffee shop, it’s definitely a show stopper on Amsterdam Avenue -- I place my front feet on her shoulders, point my elegant muzzle skywards and bay (triumphantly) right in her face! The production of the triumphant bay require the full skyward muzzle tilt (making me as tall as Elizabeth—which is not saying much as she is rather shrimpy, but it’s still quite satisfying) and is of a higher pitch and a more extended duration than my other bays, making it even more ear splitting (for her) and even more attention getting (for me). Everyone seems to enjoy my performance quite a bit -- except Elizabeth of course, but her opinions never count for very much in any case.

Well after my greeting and the subsequent attention that it elicited from passers-by, my humans made the fatal mistake crossing the street and placing me within bolting range of one of my favorite pet stores (is there such a thing as an unfavorite pet store?). Well as the predictable leash struggle ensued, a helpful clerk popped out of the store to inform Elizabeth that if only she would place my prong higher up on my neck she might enjoy greater success in her Wimsey Control endeavors. “Thank you, I know” she replied through gritted teeth. But of course what the helpful clerk did not know was that: 1) the equipment has not yet been invented that is any match for a determined Hound and 2) through the Miracle of the Hound Dewlap all equipment is made to instantly slip down my neck and into the least effective position. I like to think that this slippery dewlap is one of the more useful adaptations of Hound evolution. (perhaps all intelligent life did not evolve from sea sludge, but from a race of clever prehistoric Hounds:

Wimsey Productions presents:

10,000 Years BC: A Time When Giant Hounds Roamed the Earth
(“It takes a Hound to change the World”)

Primitive human #1: Oh no! The earth trembles! The ear drums split! The Hounds are up. The massive yellow showers cannot be far behind!

Primitive human # 2: And then avalanches of steaming mounds are sure to follow!

Primitive Human # 1: Yes, but those aren’t so bad—they make excellent climbing once they dry out.

Primitive human # 2: But that is a dangerous sport-- the beasts like to stick their immense vacuuming noses into the mounds—they inhaled Inik the other day!

Primitive human #1: True, inhalation is a risk but at least I can avoid being trampled upon by their massive feet.

Primitive human # 2: And being sliced by the Nails that Can Never Be Cut. Is it true that they lose their powers if their nails are trimmed?

Primitive human #1: Absolutely! The Nail is sacred to them. Anyway, at least we are not tall enough to be caught in a tail swipe—they took out a whole forest yesterday.

Primitive human #2: Was that before or after they raided our camp and stole all of our food?

Primitive human #1: Before. They whet their appetites by chewing up the felled trees.

Primitive human #2: Well it’s bad enough to lose all of our food and the forest but I hate getting trapped in that sticky gunk that comes out of their mouths-- although it is useful gluing clothes together.

Primitive human #1: Yes but the sticky gunk is better than the clouds of noxious fumes that come out the other end –our neighbors had to spend the entire day in their flatulence bunker.

Primitive human #2: How come we have to have them around anyway?

Primitive human #1: Because they’re Hounds. Life would be terrible without them!

Anyway, after being pried off of the pet shop door we dropped by the vet’s office so I could be made a fuss over by Monica the receptionist and my humans could leave an update for the vet on the resolution of my anal problems; I was able to personally convey my thanks for his prescribing of the delightful warm water washing and soothing ointment massage (I am in favor of the treatment continuing even though I am cured and often look longingly at the shelf where the ointment is kept, but then it’s all “Wimsey don’t be disgusting.”). Well after being fussed over by Monica we all paced over to Riverside Park for some trotting practice. (When Elizabeth was bringing down my cavalettis the gentleman manning the service elevator apparently went white at the sight of them and squeaked “He’s back??!!” -- I stayed with Elizabeth before Westminster and obviously made a huge impression on the service elevator crew). Then after a few grudging passes over the poles (I hate trotting) some neighborhood children decided they could do better—Elizabeth was so excited to see an actual trot that she had to restrain herself from squealing “Good trot!” and stuffing liver into the mouths of the little tykes. Somehow I don’t think they would have appreciated that, although their mother might (“Do you have any broccoli too?”)

And then after show dog practice it was off to Central Park with Elizabeth (Maria having decided that perhaps it might be useful to pretend to have a life for a day). Well, what can I say—the weather was magnificent and we met so many lovely people and dogs (I attempted the inhalation of an entire greyhound) and of course they all wanted to make a fuss over me. Sometimes I do wonder what it would be like to be a regular dog and go about the business of sniffing and peeing unnoticed by the masses, but then I remember the policemen who fed me their breakfast sandwiches and I think maybe it wouldn’t be such a good thing. But fortunately I don’t have to do much-- I am famous just for being a bloodhound in a place where we are scarce (although I did not appreciate the fellow last week who thought I was a basset-great Dane mix, but I suppose he was an improvement over the guy who thought I was a Doberman-St. Bernard cross and I do get mistaken quite a bit for The World’s Largest and Most Unusual Looking Shar-Pei).

Now although I can’t help being (in) famous I notice that humans actually seem to go to extraordinary lengths to achieve fame. This week New York publishing circles are abuzz with the fact that a new book which was supposed to be the memoir of a former South Central LA California gang member was in fact written by a privileged young woman from Sherman Oaks. Her publisher’s attempts to check her identity were met with the assertion that everyone she knew was either dead or in prison (and I bet they would have believed that the dog ate her homework too). So now I am thinking that if no one wants to publish my children’s guide to New York City (Wimsey’s’ Guide to New York) there are lots of other books I can write: (the author’s agent, actually lives on West 76th street so if she liked the faux gang member I am sure she’d love to see these):

How I Won Best in Show at Westminster by Uno the Beagle (I look a lot smaller inside the show ring)

Dawgs and Bitches: My Life as a (un) Rap Star

Fighter Pilot! Wimsey’s Ten Step Guide to Flying an F-18

Matador! The life of Wimsey, the world’s most famous bullfighter

Wimsey’s guide to buying real estate on that island on “Lost”

My Life at Sea: How I sailed solo across the Atlantic and accidentally discovered The Lost Continent of Atlantis

The Under (the) cover Hound: My life as a famous CIA Agent

Super Model! My life of glory on the Catwalk (and why there are no actual cats)

Wimsey’s Guide to health and wealth: Grow rich and thin while sitting on the couch eating Cheetos

How to build a real estate empire with no money down and a bag of poop

Wimsey’s Blog: Diary of a Manhattan Fila Brasiliera

And of course all those Fresh-Step and Trail Mix commercials with the bloodhound—they’re all me! Isn’t it amazing how Elizabeth suddenly managed to train me to do all those things when I won’t even stand still in the show ring!

But I digress. I was speaking of Sunday in the Park with Wimsey. Well in addition to packs of nice New Yorkers we also met lots of folks from all parts of the globe which thrills Elizabeth as she always enjoys amazing them with her linguistic prowess—she knows how to say “bloodhound” in French, German, Hungarian (don’t ask), Italian and Spanish (she’s still working on Russian and Hebrew, but is not sure whether they have bloodhounds in those countries). And the looks on people’s faces are priceless—an American speaking a foreign language! It’s like the cat suddenly spouting Chaucer. (A few years ago a French couple was mugged in New York and found a French speaking policeman—it made headlines in Paris!). And then of course people assume she can actually speak all those languages as most people who know the word for bloodhound generally also know other words as well (although I can’t think why as bloodhound is clearly the most important word---

I have a bloodhound,
You have a bloodhound
He has a bloodhound
She has a bloodhound
They have a bloodhound
We have a bloodhound
Here is a beautiful bloodhound; his name is Wimsey

Anyway, Elizabeth was not able to induce me to leave the Park until 4:30pm which I finally did amid a hail of protesting squeaks (and my best tractor imitation on the path leading back into the Ramble). But the tragedy of the park departure was somewhat mitigated by the fact that I arrived home in time to stick my nose into the cookies that Maria was baking. (Hound nose imprints make lovely cookie decorations as long as you don’t tell people what they are).

And speaking of decorating, it is time once again for out weekly visit to the Wimsey Institute of Houndish Art. Today our visit takes us to the South of France—Arles to be exact where master Dutch (how do you say bloodhound in Dutch, I wonder) post impressionist Vincent Van Gogh painted a picture of his bedroom in his beloved yellow house. Bedroom in Arles (Vincent Van Gogh, 1888, Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam). Van Gogh hoped to express rest and solidity in this simple room but see how much more serene and peaceful the scene looks with a solid, snoozing Hound occupying the bed. And notice how the lovely color of the Hound complements the strong, bright colors of the room! Now it really looks likes one could get an excellent night’s rest while waiting for Gauguin to arrive. Wimsey’s Bedroom Arles.

Well, I am off to rest and to prepare for the rigors of the tub.

Until next time,

Wimsey, The (wannabe) Gangsta Hound


Edie and Gus said...

My Dearest Wimsey,
I am not quite sure what is going on, but Edie and the girls have been reading your blog today, and they are still rolling upon the floor. They appear to be crying. Actually they are quite hysterical...and now they explain to me that they are laughing. I think the bit about the prong and the pet store actually put them over the edge, as I performed a similar maneuver just yesterday.
Setting: country hillside road glazed with ice
Problem: jogger with leashed, well-behaved dog
Other Problem: one bloodhound sized prong collar conveniently around the LOWER portion of the neck
Biggest Problem: 100 lbs of "feelin' my oats" Gus
Visual: I am sure you can see the situation clearly
Result: wrenched shoulder (not mine), scratches on legs (not mine) and a seriously angry female (yep, she's mine)
What can I say? It was my 2nd birthday, and I am sure that I DESERVED to show that dog on just whose road he was trotting!
Edie says she will pay anyone good money to come up with a prong that can defeat the proliferation of what she terms as "miles of rubbery neck skin" (as opposed to what we call chin skin).
Edie also says that she may ask me to send more comments about this week's post, as she enjoyed it so very much.

I also have a question for you. Are there ever any liver and tan bloodhounds like me entered in dog shows? Just curious.

And one other thing. Another book title you should consider:
Wimsey: Sled dog of the North, Iditarod Champion

I sure hope you're keeping track of the Iditarod right now! That Lance Mackey has the best athletes in the world!

Best of luck in your show this weekend. Knock 'em dead! (Ok, maybe just knock 'em down...)

Your Finally Thawed Alaskan Bloodhound Friend Who is Now Two,

Biggie-Z said...

Wimsey, did your people give up on the halti? Mommy was trying to wean me off of it but since she has been traveling so much I'm sure I have picked up some bad habits to torture her with.

Sharon said...

What a fun post. I laughed out loud! Keep it up. I came over here from Thoughts Fur Paws and am glad I did..