April 27, 2009

—Speaking of feeding the dog, I feel compelled to let you know that the dog in question is not happy with his current situation.

“Which is?”

—Completely confused and uncertain: time-honored traditions and routines are being violated daily and it is upsetting my stomach.

“Not that one could tell given how quickly you wolf down your chow.”

—A purely nervous response: I’m so befuddled and anxious I have little control over my eating speed.

“I see.”

—Yes, so a soothing biscuit is probably in order.

“More food?”

—Biscuits aren’t food, really, they’re more . . . analgesic.

“Big word for a dog.”

—This dog abides with a nurse, remember?

“True.”

—So . . .?

“So . . . what?”

—The biscuit?

“No.”

—The constant cruelty I suffer isn’t good for my nerves either, you know.

“My sympathies.”

—And any minute now the idiot little dogs will start their yapping and I’ll be forced to restore order to this canine sector again.

“Better rest up for your coming labors.”

—Good idea.

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April 22, 2009

—And what about my bark? You’ve stopped conversing with me and I hardly see you anymore and I haven’t heard a word about my bark for ages, which means you’ve probably decided to forget all about it, though you can’t imagine how distressed I am, particularly with all the new stupid yappy dogs that have moved in on both sides of the house that are driving me crazy, plus . . .

“You’re breathing awful hard, calm down.”

—How can I be calm when all my dreams are being buried beneath the yapping of stupid little dogs and the neglect of a formerly loyal transcriptionist, um, I mean secretary . . . uh, I mean co-author?

“Almost a nice save there . . . muffin-licker. Look, the past few weeks have been a time of transition, so just mellow out and don’t get your lump in a twist: your bark is still on the agenda and your ‘loyal’ secretary has not abandoned you.”

—Really?

“Really, though I do have some other work to do today, okay?”

—All right, I guess. If you don’t mind, I think I’ll begin napping early because I’m just a nervous wreck.

“Napping?”

—Of the eternally vigilant variety.

“Of course.”

—Call me when the biscuits are being served.

“I will.”

April 6, 2009

—Things to include on your To Do List: pay more attention to your fierce but loyal dog, quit shooing him away from your lap, scratch his ears longer and more persistently, liberate more biscuits from their boxy prison . . .

“One, I’m trying to type and your nose gets in the way and your hair gets all over the keyboard, and two, I doubt the biscuits would agree that being released from a box only to be chomped on is even close to liberation.”

—So, it’s a short liberation: freedom of any duration is preferable to tyranny.

“What a noble philosopher you’ve become.”

—Become, nothing: it’s my natural state.

“I’m too tired to pursue this line of discussion. I think the first thing I need to do is take a nap.”

—I would agree with that course of action.

“Wow. Big surprise there.”

April 1, 2009

—Aren’t you forgetting someone?

“What do you mean?”

—You are professing profound gratitude to everyone and everything but not one tiny grain of thanks to the protector of the household.

“Meaning you.”

—Who else puts their life on the line day after day, patrolling the defense perimeter, insuring that the integrity of the home will not be violated by evil, who else pursues those foolish criminals who encroach and trespass upon the sacred grounds . . . .

“Whoa, whoa, whoa! You’re getting a bit carried away with the job definition aren’t you? Need I remind you that you spend about 20 hours a day on your side snoozing?”

—Snoozing? You dare call my intense level of alertness snoozing? I’d be insulted if I hadn’t heard such ignorance from you before.

“You’re not even alert enough these days to get off the couch before we open the front door.”

—Hmph.

“Did you just ‘hmph’ me?”

—Interpret it as you will; you always do anyway, never understanding the finer points, the delicate intricacies, the subtle delineations, the . . .

“Yeah, yeah, okay, enough with the purple. Thank you, Lewis, thank you, for all your hard work: what would we do without you?

—See, was that so hard?

“Of course, there’d also be no poop patrol without you . . .”