Archive for February, 2014

Conversation With A Chihuahua

Posted on February 28, 2014. Filed under: language, Pets | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

Today’s proverbActions speak louder than words.

Your word for the day:

  • language = a communication medium; a bridge between the knowledge of one and the ignorance of another.

I noted the language barrier between our two species (homo domesticus and canis familiaris) in a previous post (Hermit Interrupted).  Time, once again, seems to have modified things a little.  The two little interlopers upon my solitude have figured out a few things about me and have developed a path of communication.  For my part, I figure they just want to eat or go outside…   or not.

For instance, the big dog uses his nose and muzzle in the same manner that we use a hand to tap someone for attention or take their elbow to say, “Come with me.”  A quick nose dob to the leg says, “Hello” while a light muzzle slide across the leg says,  “Hey, didn’t you see me down here?”  When he comes into my room with his mouth open and his tongue hanging out a little and his eyes are sparkling, he wants something.  If I do not get up and follow, I get the muzzle hook behind my calf saying, “C’mon, man, don’t be a jackass.  At least get up and see what I want.”

Almost always, with the big boy, it’s “come with me to the food bowl.”  But, since the bowl is just a few feet from the back door where stinky things often call to him, I can’t be sure.  I always pass the food bowl and open the back door.  It may be cold and rainy, but  I hype the excitement of the great outdoors and then look back for his reaction.  His eyes are looking at me from the tops of their sockets.  Holding that gaze, his butt slowly sinks to the carpet into the sitting position.  I can hear him thinking, “You…   have got…   to be kidding.  How long is it going to take you to figure this out?”  Yeah!  He wants food.  Conversely, if he makes a run at the back door, it’s the stinky things calling to him.

Then, there is the 50-ouncer, the hairy Chihuahua.  He asks for more than a trip outside or a serving of chow.  He has agenda:

  • I want your chair.
  • I want to be in your lap in your chair.
  • I want the other chair you use.
  • Open this door so I can get in this room.
  • It is time to feed me.
  • Daddy, he’s looking at me again!  (That is to tell me the big dog is edging closer to the little one’s bowl so he can muscle in and finish it off.  It is little dog’s way of getting me to scold the big dog.)

Both of them have different dialects for “holie molie what are you eating?  Can I have some, too?  Can I have some, huh?” When little dog is eager and excited for something, big dog exhibits interest but remains silent.  He keeps looking at little dog and me to see what the effect is.  Because big dog knows that little dog is cute to homo domesticus and gets what he wants most of the time, big dog lets little dog to the begging.  Big dog gets to share in whatever little dog negotiated

However, there was one event that went beyond “I am hungry, feed me” and “I’m bored, let me out.”  I think the little one called me stupid.

While in my LIFE IS GOOD pose (feet up, leaning back in my chair, cup of coffee poised to meet my lips, eyes closed in deep reflection) little dog came in all excited.  Right up to my knee he came, making that yelping, whiney noise and tapping my knees with his paws…   standing on his back feet since the top of his head is only about 7 inches from the floor.  My immediate assessment is that he wants up in my lap.  Wrong again, coffee breath.  As I stirred, little dog whirled and hit the doorway all excited.  When I stood, he took off down the hall…   outside, I guessed.  Out in the hall, I saw that he had raced all of 3 feet to the next door.  He was in a slight crouch, nose to the door and glancing up at me.  When that door opened at least 2 inches, he was ready to squirt in.

Small problem:  a house guest is using this room.  Whenever this request is made, I always knock first and wait for a reply before I open the door.  This I did twice with no answer.  Down low, I saw the hairy one rise from his sprint pose and give me a full face look.  Then, in an instant, he shot down the hallway and into the living room.  I followed.  In the living room he had stopped and sat down at the couch and was looking me in the eyes as I entered.  I then asked him if he wanted to go outside and I tried to make that sound exciting.  The dog responded by racing back into the hall and waiting for me at the door he wanted to enter.  I opened the door and he was happy.

This is the conversation that went down:

  • Hey, Doofus, let me in the bedroom next door.
  • Okay, but let me knock so I don’t surprise anyone.
  • Knock, knock.  No answer.  Knock, knock.  No answer.
  • Unbelievable.  Look, Doofus, there is no one in there to answer.  Come to the living room.
  • So,  now you want to go outside?
  • Are you for real?  The kid you think is in the bedroom is asleep here on the couch — you can see him can’t you?  So, quit talking to the stupid door and let me in that room.

If that damned, hairy little creature weren’t so cute, I could hate him…   a lot!

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A Celebration of 100

Posted on February 12, 2014. Filed under: MIM4.5a | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

…articles, not years.

This is my 100th posting in this blog thing.  It took me 24 months, today.  That means I posted an average or 4.17 articles per month.  According to blogging gurus, I should post 30 a month to be considered a real blogger.

Oops!

Saluting what matters.  I have certainly enjoyed letting my imagination fly in this manner and look forward to bringing a few back-burner literary efforts to the front.  Fittingly, I am making this 100th posting a salute to that one who is the key in my efforts to clear cobwebs from my dusty inkpot.  To be sure, that one is totally unaware of her contribution, and I tremble at the possible consequences should she make the connection to some of my more avid commentary.

ABSOLUTION.  MIM4.5a is hereby absolved from any involvement in, or prior knowledge of, my ramblings.

THE FACTS OF THE MATTER:

  1. Her physical presence in my world, while little more than an image espied through a fence knothole, filled my view as if in a picture window.  She impressed me along the order of that asteroid impressing the dinosaurs, and, unfortunately for me (partly due to my antipathy to change) with equally dismal results.
  2. My presence in her world couldn’t measure up even to the influence of a tiny gnat buzzing Washington’s nose on Mt. Rushmore.
  3. Yet, wonder of wonders, though our interactions were exceedingly brief and sporadic, she accorded me the utmost of regard and respect.  She was never condescending nor did she dismiss me and my coworkers as the inferior corporate beings that we actually were.

I shared my awe concerning this Lady in an earlier post, which I put together while in a fog after having my orderly and hum-drum life disordered.  Revisiting that article, I can see that it could leave a creepy impression.  Since I was not subsequently served a legal restraining order, I have assumed that…

  • …the Lady I hold in high esteem has not read the article and that…
  • if she did, she did not make the connection.

This respite provides time for me to do three things:

  1. Rewrite the article while not in a disheveled state of mind.
  2. Try to make it not too creepy for the Lady in question…   just in case she reads it and DOES make the connection.
  3. Update my list of defense attorneys…   just in case.

Yet, in spite of the potential danger, “thank you” must be said and admiration must be expressed while one has the freedom to do so.

Your words for the day:

  • MIM4.5a = my Muse; she whose name I must not mention.
  • elan = smooth; energy expressed in elegance.
  • steel = the essence of strong.
  • endurance = strength of both character and body expressed over a span of time.
  • satin = an elegant fabric know for its sheen and frictionless surface quality.
  • arctic wolf = white wolf of the far north, imbued with phenomenal endurance.

Out of that, I find two words that capture MIM’s essence:  steel and satin.  She, the personification of those two qualities, unknowingly pushed me out on these internet waters where I could explore myself and give voice to the dark nature of the existence that surrounds us all.  While I will share with you the nature of that impetus and why it roused me from my moribund state, I will leave out specifics so as not to embarrass or offend MIM.  Further, lest the ardor of my admiration give a wrong impression again, I must state emphatically that the impetus was NOT of the boy-meets-girl type.  That statement, though, in no way lessens her impact upon my psyche.

If each of usas many populations living close to the heart of Nature asserthas an animal spirit, then, beyond any doubt MIM’s would be the arctic wolf, a timeless expression of elan, strength, and, most notably, endurance.  To exude elan and demonstrate strength in the face of what has to be an exhausting work agenda is, to me, an astounding feat.  I witnessed that over and over without realizing it, mostly because I had no idea just what her job duties were.  To me, she was a brief, recurring ray of sunshine incidentally warming a lesser being mired in the tedium of existence.  Those infrequent, yet, to a degree, predictable encounters over time constituted a slow, steady impact like dripping water etching an indelible pattern into a rock.

That etching started at our first encounter.  I and two other new employees were in the office lobby when a veteran employee entered, waiting quietly for a visitor.  Breaking the silence, I asked her name and what she did.  Her noncommittal facade and outward gaze were redirected to me, her eyes instantly alive with interest as a new-born smile invited further conversation.  My two buds joined in, and, together we pelted her with questions for about five minutes while she fielded every one of them in seeming delight.  Her amusement was evident in posture, smile, and twinkle as they asked in unison, “What else you got?”

The revelations from our impromptu interrogation painted for me an appealing character outline:

  • She was quite at ease in a spontaneous forum.  We three inquisitors had a corporate function that excluded us from easily engaging other employees.  She knew our function, ignored it, and played 20 questions like it was the only game in town.
  • Self-assurance and composure flowed smoothly from her posture, speech, and penetrating gaze.  From a totally benign presence, she morphed instantly into an engaging and interactive spirit responding with apparent delight to the verbal ambush.
  • She was living the life that was my fantasy in my youth.  The adventurer that I had always dreamed that I would be stood before me in that lobby; she routinely traveled to exotic ports of call, both beautiful and dangerous.  I immediately felt a kinship with her and I had already forgotten her name.  There was no chance that I would forget her face.

Over time, I learned that she had been to some of the places that I had been, further cementing my feeling of kinship.  Seeing her schedule in practice (1 month on the other side of the planet, l month at home) and observing her freshness of face and attitude immediately upon returning, underscored her physical and mental strength.  For these traits alone, I began to hold her in higher regard above the crowd.  That and the welcoming smile she flashed in our occasional and brief “hello” moments.

Workplace dynamics eventually relocated her to another site.  That was when I discovered the pattern etched in my psyche, a place into which a devout hermit does not permit intrusion.  It would seem that, drop by drop, I had become an addict dependent upon the warmth found in a random, but always certain, appearance of a single ray of sunshine.  I consoled my loss by learning more about the professional aspect of MIM.

That Lady of the Lobby with a pixie smile and twinkling eyes —

  • …is a corporate eagle who, for some reason, found delight in the antics of 3 corporate mice.  Had those mice known her stature, there would have been no in-depth questioning and I probably would never have experienced MIM.
  • …has responsibility for corporate assets.
  • …is a corporate shark handler.  She interacts with government officials (domestic and foreign), a variety of self-interested big-business officials, hostile litigators and friendly legal types.  This she accomplishes on both sides of the planet, yet showed no stress in our occasional encounters.  Judging from her tenure, she is exceedingly good at what she does.

She was eagle, and, I was mouse blissfully unaware of the wide disparity.  Though she undoubtedly knew, she never exuded an air of superiority.  In each and every one of our very brief and sporadic interactions, I was accorded the social status of equal.  I was respected simply for being a person.

Elan, strength, endurance — my Lady of the Lobby, you have the whole package.  It would be futile for me to try to be you, so I must settle for vicarious fulfillment.  Thus, as a token of my respect and admiration, I recognize you as my Muse.  To summarize you in words, steel and satin seem quite adequate to the task.

My unfulfilled literary ambitions over the years centered on my distaste of the so-called Press and its arrogant personalities.  Finding an article in the public forum that I found offensive toward MIM brought old resentments to the surface; I began writing, using this blog format.  Many of my compositions for the past two years are unkind assessments of the Big P and other self-promoters who prey on public ignorance to make a buck, callously trampling the rights and reputations of businesses and persons.  And, they do it so self-righteously, claiming for themselves “constitutional right” while denying their victims a reciprocal right to the same constitution.

MIM, I cannot thank you enough for upsetting the familiar and orderly hum-drum of my prior existence.  I will try to be a credit to the traits that occur so naturally to you.

 

Next up:  Steel and Satin

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