“What do you think of the new water meter reader?” Fifi asked. She’s the neighborhood flirt and a French poodle with an ego the size of Texas. A group of my friends had gathered at the dog park, or rather the vacant lot that serves the same purpose in our mini community. While our humans gabbed, we played tag, had a couple of good natured wrestling matches, and did some bird chasing, until the August heat got overwhelming.
Our group decided to emulate the humans who stood in the shade of a couple coconut palms discussing whatever that inferior species believes is interesting. Our canine crew selected the cool shadow of a Gumbo Limbo tree far enough from the people that they wouldn’t disturb us.
“He seems nice,” I said.
“Sandy, you think everybody’s nice. You’d give an axe murder a kind word and a smile.” Sarge, the German Shepard, thinks I’m a softie. I admit I am around him. You know what crushes can do to a girl.
“Oh, I know all about him.” Barbie the cocker spaniel just had to get her two cents in. “He’s originally from Peoria. I believe that’s somewhere in France. The Riviera near Marseilles. He has a wife and four children. Three girls and a boy. His wife is overweight. And,” Barbie lowered her voice, “His last name is Raspin. That’s shortened from Rasputin. I can’t reveal my source, but I hear he’s a descendant of the mad Russian monk and one of the Romanov women’s illegitimate children.” I used to wonder where Barbie got her info, until she told me her human writes a political blog. Then I knew she just makes up her “facts” as she goes along. Like human, like canine.
“Wow, wow, wow! That’s cool. Really cool. Royalty. Wow. I mean, major cool. Wow, wow, wow,” Manny said. That chihuahua would buy a sled for a visit to the Sahara if Barbie was selling them. Manny likes Barbie’s short legs. He has this obvious problem. The horny little bastard.
“I’d like to bite him,” Heinz said. That’s his standard answer about any strange human that wanders into the ‘hood.
“Your attitude gives us all a bad reputation.” Baseer is a diplomat. If you’re an Afghan I guess it comes naturally. “You must learn to modify your approach. Be less aggressive and hostile in your relations.”
Heinz thought for a second. “Yeah. I’ll not say a word, not even a growl. Then I’ll sneak up behind him and bite him.”
“Heinz, you’re a train wreck!” I couldn’t help getting angry. “Don’t you care about how your actions reflect on us? Can’t you see how much we dislike your attitude? How do you feel about that?”
“I still want to bite him.” Heinz was unrepentant.
“I don’t know why you even bother to try reasoning with him, Sandy.” Fifi lifted her nose in the air. “Some people just lack breeding and can’t do anything about it.”
“Listen here you elitist bitch. You aren’t gonna do my thinking for me.” Heinz’s teeth were showing and there wasn’t a grin to go with them. “If I want to bite the damn water meter reader, I’m gonna.” When Heinz begins using bad grammar its a sign his human’s been giving him beer. There’s nothing more unpleasant than an inebriated canine.
“Well, I never!” Fifi’s curls were kinking. “But, what can you expect from one of you…you…you…HYBRIDS!!!”
“Okay, that’s it!” Heinz moved toward Fifi menacingly.
“Leave her alone!” Sarge growled.
“You gonna make me?” Heinz had fire in his eye, but it wasn’t as bright as when he spoke to Fifi.
“Do raccoons have fleas? Do politicians lie? Does Dolly Parton have tits? You bet I am.” Sarge likes a good fight.
“Now boys,” I said. “Let’s stay calm.”
“Sandy come. Treat time.” The Geezer’s call was mixed with whistles and shouts from the other humans. They’d finally remembered their obligation to serve us our snacks, provide water, and give us the petting and fawning we deserve. I raced over to the Geezer’s feet, glad that the humans return to responsible awareness defused the unpleasantness that was close to occurring in our little group.
I arrived in time to overhear the last vestige of the human’s conversation. Some garbage about politics. Liberals. Conservatives. Idle gossip. No wonder the human race doesn’t amount to a thing.