All posts tagged: dogs

Sticky missions

A year and a half, more or less, of stress and misery masked by smiling fortitude. Yuck. I’d rather wail and screech. Family deaths, an unjust nation, job hunting, and illness. The horoscope writer in the newspaper hates Sagittarians because every day I’m told to keep my head down, trust no one, stay close to home. I drag on my cheerful stripy socks and live each day like it isn’t preceded by something wretched. Miss Tibbit the Useless, Crooked Hankie the Corgi, the WideEyedSpouse, and I walk the three block walkies circuit most evenings. Christmas lights are going up all over the neighborhood and legions of bagged leaves line the strip between the sidewalk and the street. Hank pees on as many as possible, his stout corgi body rushing to the next leaf bag each time. I can tell he loves marking up the captive yard parts. After each leg lift, he gives me a sideways look and a grin and then accelerates to the next, ears aflap. Tibbit ignores the leaf bags and gathers …

Dogs like cookies.

Crooked Hank the Young Corgi and Miss Tibbit the Useless Little Black Dog arranged themselves nearby while I put on the Superga kicks this morning. (Note: this is the first day suitable for kicks rather than snow boots, rain boots, hiking boots, or warm-knee-high leather boots in living memory. Sing praise and joy to the kicks.) I held each sock for Hank’s inspection, prior to getting my foot inside of it. Tibbit sniffed shoelaces and inspected soles. I cleared my throat and leaned back, the aging settee creaked and the comfy pillows squashed around me. I smiled to the congregation before me, and opened the liturgy of the Church of the WideEyedDogs. I chanted, monophonic, “All the dogs should have cookies, all the time.” In my mind I heard the congregation chant the response, “Cookies all the time.” Hank and Tibbit sat up, ears perked in a participatory manner. And, “The dogs should have the good kind of cookies with liver and bacon, not the cheap wheat flour ones.” Response, “The expensive liver cookies, all …

Surrounded by vegetables,

and we bought homemade rhubarb candies. The south Anchorage Farmer’s market ends for the season today. Carrots, beets, Brussels sprouts, potatoes are piled high and steeply discounted. The stacks of giant lettuces, kales, cabbages  – grown to monstrous size in the sunny, long Alaskan summer days – are shrinking fast. Everyone is desperate to get fresh greens because in a few short weeks the only options will be limp and pale lettuce masses, stacked like wet laundry in grocery store fluorescent light. There’s an announcement. The live entertainment, a guitar playing local man named Wayne, is moving out of state. He’ll play the farmer’s market no more. “Please sign the sweatshirt we are gifting to him in thanks,” the organizer said over the microphone. I sauntered over to the signing table. A little black lab puppy sat at my feet, staring up at me with love in his eyes. A nervy wolfhound slunk past behind us. Later, a trio of sweatered Chihuahuas pranced 12 tiny feet around their boss lady as she selected potatoes. I crouched …

Should I be proud that I outsmarted dogs?

We’re out of dog biscuits. No, I mean, we’re OUT of DOG biscuits. Cookies. Snackies. Num nums. Call them whatever you want, doesn’t change the fact that the jar is EMP-TY. The WideEyedHousehold economy runs on milkbones. I don’t want to hear a lot of noise about dogs should listen.  They listen just fine when they want to. And when they don’t want to, I rattle the cookie jar lid, sharpens their hearing right up. I carry a pocketful of cookies pretty much all the time. Dogs are less apt to be nervy when there’s a pocketful of cookies around. But we ran out. No Cheerios to replace them. No Cheez-its, chips, or peanut-butter-stuffed-pretzels. Nothing. The WideEyedSpouse and I are on our own. I opened the fridge, hardboil some eggs? Too messy. Cut some cheese chunks? No, I’ll end up eating it all linty from my pocket and everything. Arugula? That’s just panic talking. My eye fell on the bin of dog dinner kibble on the bottom shelf of the pantry. The dogs like it …

My work colleagues are dogs. And no, I’m not a sheepherder.

Miss Tibbit the Useless Little Black Dog and Hamish the Corgi work with me all the day long. And they work hard on their dog chores. Miss Tibbit holds the cushion down on the chair. Hamish holds the chair in position. They sigh and stretch and mumble over their tasks. Every now and again, Hamish has to squirm into a better holding position, Miss Tibbit must squeeze herself tighter into her little dog-round position. Today Miss Tibbit worked in the window seat in the front parlor. Hamish occupied himself with holding down the old red settee. I was so lonely. The keys wouldn’t type right on the keyboard. The words wouldn’t come in my careful writing. The day was bleak. Now we’re back up here for the evening round of work. Sweet Tibbit is snoring and twitching with her full post-dinner belly and Hamish looks like he may have actually passed out. And, sure, the WideEyedSpouse is across the room, sighing and creaking around in his chair doing mysterious Spouse office things.  But he’s with …

Sweet Tibbit gets her money’s worth out of a jelly bean.

Hamish the Corgi and Miss Tibbit can’t stop thinking about jelly beans. I’m looking at Sweet Tibbit now and she’s laying on the window seat gazing into the middle distance. She seems vacuous, blank-eyed, awaiting stimulus. I assure you she is thinking about jelly beans.  Hamish is lounged on the sofa, chin propped and contemplative. He is also thinking about jelly beans. Because they are dogs, they both like, or rather, don’t dislike, every color jelly bean. I believe that there is a slight preference for pink, red and purple jelly beans over black, orange, and green. It is hard to tell with Hamish because he crunch-gulps so swiftly that the experience is over by the time his Corgi brain has the opportunity to form an opinion. Sweet Tibbit, she savors a jelly bean. She snuffles the bean with her strangely mobile little black nose.  If it proves acceptable (and it always does but certain colors are approved more quickly), if acceptable Sweet Tibbit takes the bean with her tiny front nibble teeth and pursed …