Thursday, October 1, 2009

Wimsey's Blog: Diary of a Manhattan Bloodhound #138

Entry #138
October 2, 2009

Hello everyone, Wimsey here coming to you from Manhattan’s Upper West Side where a bad case of the Autumnal Friskies are under way and leash holding arms are stretched to the max. My human Maria and her friend Elizabeth remember with dread the autumn that I had to wear a gentle leader for the entire season in order for them to stay alive. But now as a more experienced Hound I have learned how to just barely avoid the imposition of the Leader and its equally evil cousin The Halti. Our friend Bentley (The Bay Window, recently mounted a photo expo of the exhibits from his Museum of Failed Hound Control Devices—many of these are devices with which I am all too unpleasantly familiar.

And although I generally wear a prong, rest assured that wearing the prong and listening to the prong are two entirely different things. Personally I consider the prong rather in the light of a decorative necklace that seems to make my humans feel better. I think that they have reluctantly concluded that the best Hound control devices result from trips to the gym-- muscle strength being their bulwark against premature death by Hound. (Hauling 30lb bags of my kibble up the stairs doesn’t hurt either nor does trying to shift a 125lb Hound who is not desirous of being shifted). Doctors do say that exercise can save your life but only humans cohabitating with giant Hounds know this to be literally true. (Letting oneself go has a whole different meaning for my ladies). And of course they listen to the official Wimsey workout song, “Stayin’ Alive.”

But in addition to staying fit as a matter of self preservation, there are many other benefits that accrue by dint of having a Hound around. Mostly of course people want to do nice things for me, but occasionally people also want to do nice things for my humans. This Sunday, for instance, as I was baying up a storm, a lady with excellent taste from the Malin+Goetz shop came out to admire me. She ended up giving Elizabeth lot of free samples of luxury shampoo and facial cream on account of my being so cute. I am always much admired by the Malin+Goetz people (I am on their web site along with other prominent neighborhood dogs) but my humans consistently refuse to allow me to enter the shop due to its pristine décor relying heavily as it does on the color white. Nevertheless, I have extensively sniffed the Malin+Goetz product line in Elizabeth’s bathroom and can vouch for its appeal. And although I am not in the market for shampoos, luxury or otherwise, and certainly not for facial creams which might make my wrinkles less prominent, I do enjoy playing with their products.

I must say though I am quite delighted by Elizabeth’s bathroom—it is far more accessible than the one in Maria’s apartment and its layout enables me to exercise the full scope of my bathroom monitor duties. In addition to sniffing all of the shampoos, soaps and creams, etc.--usually in order to gauge their alimentary appeal, I also keep close tabs on Elizabeth’s bath and shower activities; I get fed turkey during my bath time and am always hopeful that Elizabeth might also be enjoying a shareable snack in the midst of her ablutions. And of course I demand to be scratched while all other bathroom activities are in progress.

Also this week, in addition to getting free beauty product samples (although I still maintain that fresh air and drool are the best recipes for healthy and glowing skin), the folks at Nikon invited Elizabeth to a cocktail event at a midtown lounge. This is because she is a member of the Nikon Cool Pix Circle and uses a Nikon S630 point and shoot camera to get pictures of me for my blog. So in addition to meeting the photographer for the new animal rescue TV show Rescue Ink, Elizabeth was able to engage Nikon staff in such essential topics as how to remove bribing turkey and drool smudges from the LCD screen and whether image stabilization could be augmented to include Wimsey stabilization (patience and standing still not being one of my conspicuous strengths). For instance, here I am meeting a new friend, Jada a lovely brindle Great Dane. And as always I try to impress the ladies with a vigorous display of the zoomies, the meet and greet and of course, the romantic serenade. All of which is not easy to capture on camera.

Anyway, Elizabeth saw lots of cool cameras that she would love to own if she didn’t need something small enough to fit into that dog pouch that seems to be surgically attached to her waist. But since the whole point of the Nikon camera is taking pictures of me, I thought I should have been invited.

Of course I could have predicted that Elizabeth would like the cameras she saw but then again I am good at predicting most things that have to do with my humans. I think I should set up one of these stands:

Wimsey Fortune Teller

Wimsey: Pick a few of my tarot cards and I will tell your future.
Client: I didn’t know Hounds could tell fortunes.
Wimsey: I know. It’s a new service. Usually we just cost fortunes.
Client: OK, here’s the first card.
Wimsey: Ah, The Fat Beagle. The Fat Beagle is an excellent card for those wishing to lose weight. It indicates that you will have much less high calorie food available for ingestion than you thought—often the only thing left will be lettuce and a grapefruit. But the Fat Beagle card also signifies sudden loss of property. (I hope you like changing the channels on the TV manually). And those gloves that you thought were in your pocket are probably not there now.
Client: You’re right! They’re gone.
Wimsey: They were delicious.
Client: OK, here’s a good looking card, the Baying Bloodhound.
Wimsey: An excellent card. You will soon meet a tall, dark and handsome stranger from whom you will be inseparable. He will be very possessive and rule your life but when you are with him you will be very popular and very famous so you will adore him even if he doesn’t adore you.
Client: Well that doesn’t sound good.
Wimsey: On the contrary, the Baying Bloodhound always sounds good, although you will eventually be forced to purchase a pair of Bose Noise Canceling Headphones to preserve you hearing.
Client: Well what is this next card? It doesn’t have a figure on it.
Wimsey: No you have drawn the Ten of Kibbles. The Ten of Kibbles means you will meet many strangers from exotic and primitive lands where they don’t have subways or Grom gelato and the natives have objectionable names like Big Pussy. Although I imagine a big one might be more fun to chase than a little one.
Client: You mean I’m going to meet people from New Jersey!
Wimsey: Yes, but these people will be very generous and give you such things as used water bottles and leftover sandwiches.
Client: That doesn’t sound like something I would want.
Wimsey: No, but the tall, dark, handsome stranger will. And he’s the only one that counts. Anyway the next card you chose is the Galloping Greyhound. This is one of those plus minus cards. On one hand you will probably be taking a voyage to the emergency room. But the good news is that orthopedists and physical therapists will give you big discounts because you will be such a good customer.
Client: These cards don’t look very good. How about this one.
Wimsey: That’s the five of sticks. That means you will soon in inherit a fortune in vet bills.
Client: And this one?
Wimsey: Ah, that’s the Three of Stuffed Squeaky Toys. That one means that you will have many outdoor friends but few who are willing to visit you in your actual abode.
Client: Why is that?
Wimsey: Because your home will acquire a mysterious odor that no amount of air freshener will dissipate. Unsightly stains will appear, as if by magic, on your walls, furniture and in the hair of any guests brave enough to enter your residence. Also guests are liable to get shoved off the furniture.
Client: How about this one, he looks nice.
Wimsey: He is. This is the Dancing Deerhound. He indicates that you will go on a long and exciting voyage—but only in your imagination. It’s the only kind of trip you’ll be permitted on account of the Baying Bloodhound card.
Client: I really don’t like these tarot cards!
Wimsey: Few people do. But try one more card.
Client: It’s The Fool!
Wimsey: Yes, I know.
Well getting back to this Sunday’s marathon Central Park walk, you can see that the weather was rather wet (fortunately not wet enough to require the application of my raincoat for which I was exceedingly grateful. Yellow vinyl is not a good Hound color). But the wettish conditions meant that we could walk through places like the Children’s Zoo and visit the closed Wolman Rink without being crowded by the locals. Tourists, however, are made of sterner stuff-particularly all these folks from the UK who thought that the weather looked pretty nice. And they were all very interested in my humans’ attempts to photograph me.

But the real highlight of the week (and perhaps my life—and this includes the many times I’ve humiliated Elizabeth in the show ring) occurred as we were passing the 20th precinct. As many of you who read this blog know, I LOVE police officers. Even if they are in plain clothes and in unmarked cars, I can identify them and will bay vociferously until they come and pet me (kind of puts a bit of a crimp in their covers). Anyway, I was creating my usual racket in front of the 20th precinct when who should pop out to see what all the ruckus was about, but The Commanding Officer himself! And not only that, he invited me in for a tour! Well sadly there are very few pictures because I was in such a high state of wiggle (and Elizabeth was too intent on hanging on to me to remember that her Nikon camera actually has a “sports” setting for capturing athletes in motion—such as me in the squad room of a police station) and mostly what was captured on the camera was a blur of me in extreme wiggle—my humans had never seen such a degree of prolonged back end displacement-- and the commanding officer trying to get me to pose (or perhaps trying not to get drooled on---he was pretty sharply dressed). But this shot should give you some idea.
And then this Saturday as I was strolling on Riverside Drive I noticed a police car and so towed Maria over to say hello. And the officer looked down at me and exclaimed “Hey is this the dog that was visiting the station on Sunday!?” Indeed I was. (my next ambition is to actually ride in a squad car).
But all was not unsuccessful photo-wise. My humans finally got a shot of me taking a load off my feet on a park bench.

Anyway that’s about it for this week. Elizabeth’s new Fall LL bean Hounding coat has arrived and I am busy creating appropriate decorations and aromatherapy for it, so it should be a fun week.

Until next time,

Wimsey, Tough New York City Police Dog


Cindy said...

Your post is so funny! I love your dog

Bentley said...

Thanks Wimsey, for the mention. Those poor humans will never give up trying to get us under control, will they?

Mom says sometimes she's actually glad I'm towing, because then she is braced in opposition to the direction of the towing force. When I'm walking without any pull on the leash, it is hard to predict which direction I will go - and that seems to be a bit unsettling to her!

Loved hearing about your adventures at the police station and your pose on the park bench is wonderful.


Bernie said...

Wow Wimsey, your police station adventure sounds fabulous. Did you manage to cadge any donuts??? Off to try and steal Mom's morning coffee...