Sunday, January 2, 2011

Flashback - Written 10/06

Today I was thinking about a dog my family had. We got him, I think, when I was nineteen. He was a really cool dog, a pure bred sheepdog that we got from the dog pound. He had a tattoo on the roof of his mouth and everything. The day I had to put him to sleep was one of the most difficult in my life. I lay down on the floor of the vet’s office, crying uncontrollably, and holding him while he died.

My Mom took the dog everywhere with her, when he was alive I mean, we are not into taxidermy. Eventually it turned out that his previous owner noticed him one day hanging out of the car window when my Mom was heading home from work. The man happened to work for the same big organization as my Mom, and saw the dog in the parking lot that day after work. The dog did not recognize him, but the man was glad to see him happy and healthy with a family who loved him. The man told my Mom when he and his ex wife had split up, in the midst of the divorce, to spite him, his wife refused to let him have the dog she hated, and then abandoned the dog. The man searched all over and cold not find the dog. The nice lady at the dog pound found him just in time, and saved his life. He only weighed forty-two pounds when we got him.

This dog always looked like he was smiling and laughing. He was so funny, and so sweet. I loved him very much. I would lay down on the floor and snuggle with him all the time.

We also had lots of cats, I think we had five then, two were mine, two were brothers from one of the litters of a slutty kitty we once had. We could never get her spayed because we are Catholic, and she was always pregnant when we tried. The fifth cat was one my Dad brought home one day from visiting my sister Syko because he had watched her throw it up against the wall in a drunken rage and dislocate its hip. We were pretty sure the cat also had some kind of dain bramage.

The disabled cat and the sheepdog loved each other. We joked they were interspecies homosexual lovers. They slept together, ate together, and played together. The dog was the only other animal the cat would tolerate, and the dog loved him and took care of him.

We took the dog in the car all the time, people at fast food places always gave him free fries. We often took him to the ice cream store nearby and brought him dishes of ice cream. Kids loved seeing the doggy waiting in line and lots of them loved to pet him and talk to him. He was big, almost one hundred pounds, and we kept his hair short so he looked a lot like Falkor in the Never-ending story. More than once a child was so mesmerized by him that the dog easily succumbed to temptation and helped him self to a dripping cone in the hand of an adoring child, daintily taking a lick. My Dad always brought a new cone for the dog's fan club members.

The dog liked to wander around the house visiting with everyone in the house while we went about our daily business. One day I was sitting upstairs on the floor of my bedroom talking on the phone to the man who was my boyfriend at the time. He and I were the same age and kind of both reluctant to love somebody so much, but hopeless nonetheless. My boyfriend knew about my adoration for the dog, and that I constantly hugged the dog and talked to him. This must have slipped his mind that day. As I sat there talking, the dog wandered in and snuggled his delusionally diminutive self onto my lap and started giving me doggy kisses. I said, "Hello my love muffin, thank you so much for the nice kisses!" And my boyfriend screamed, "HEY! I though I was your love muffin!"

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