Take your German Shepherd to work day

I started out fighting the good fight. But my day has started going distinctly sideways on me. I can tell because I’ve given up on work and am listening to Nine Inch Nails (at volume) on my headphones. The self destructive, depressed, Courtney Love banging, drugged up Trent Reznor. Not the much more together and totally less rage filled (and some might argue less edgy) individual of we have today. Further down the spiral.

My excuse (currently*) is that we’ve run out Arabica, so I’m drinking instant. It was either that or drink toilet water. Well, my dogs would probably prefer toilet water (now that I think about it), but their palates are unrefined and they likely fall somewhere just above philistines on the chart de gastronome.

*I tend to cycle through excuses as to why things have gotten so BAD. A lot like the rest of humanity, only my excuses are real.

Oh. Its take your German Shepherd to work day. Maybe I should have led with that. Not a real day. But since I’m the boss I can arbitrarily make up stuff (which as far as I can tell, is basically the main requirement of someone in a management/leadership position)

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I needed to take break from the one hundred and sixty four unread emails and the dangerously stacked monuments of paperwork on my desk that are beginning to lean precariously to one side. One ill considered move could spell disaster. Although I suppose it could also spell something else, depending on how they fall.

I’ve been awake since about 2am this morning, wrenched from REM sleep by a Basset Hound who wanted to go pee (in the rain). A quick resolution to the bladder crisis didn’t seem to be on the cards and by the time he did feel the need to lackadaisically wander back, he was of course soaked (much to his surprise I imagine). By this stage I’d irradiated my shadow into the bedroom wall with blue light waiting for him to complete whatever predawn shenanigans basset hounds get up to snuffling around in the undergrowth. Of course then he wouldn’t settle until I’d dried him and re-furled him into his blanket. After that sleep (for me) was largely a parody.

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The German has hurt her shoulder chasing Hadedas. Which… are… eh… um… I suppose I need to explain this non South Africans…… Imagine Dantes inferno. Now zoom to the seventh layer of hell. Hadedas are basically the avian equivalent of whatever dwells there. Devil birds. Anyways, I took her for physiotherapy that she might recover quicker and continue her sacred duty of delivering my garden from this blight/scourge. (I couldn’t decide which noun I preferred since they are both relatively apt). She takes her job quite seriously and tends to over commit to the charge, hence the injury.

 

 

Cannibalism

Blogging to the melodic sound of the Basset licking his butthole on the bean bag. The soundtrack of my life (I wanted the Ode to Joy, but apparently its was taken). My wife and I diverge (like a road through a yellow wood) on parenting techniques for the hound dog. I’m happy to let him lick his derriere. Clearly his rusty sheriffs badge is in need of maintenance, who am I to stick a spanner into the works? My wife however finds the concept of him rim-jobbing himself unsettling. First will come stern words. Then even sterner words with sinister undertones. (personally I would surrender at this point) And then some form of thrown object. And then… depending on the wayward trajectory of said object… possibly getting up and engaging the basset hound in some form physical confrontation. Sometimes this works. But mostly he’ll just glare at us, and then move off to some other location to continue his tongue to ass action.

I point out that this likely qualifies as an act of futility, before pouring half a bag of Skittles into my mouth. We (my wife and I) briefly discussed the ethics of eating the progenies party pack. Turns out we are both okay with it. Basically we are honorless Ronin who burn villages, prey on the defenceless and spurn seppuku. We’re saving her from a lifetime of sugar addiction and hardship…. this is how we justify our actions.

Besides I could do with the energy, I woke up before dawn to take the dogs for a walk…

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It was quiet and misty out. There was no one around. Except for someone donned in camouflage setting up their fishing gear and little row-boat. I worry about those people. And not only because of their woodland attire.  Well… why you would need to ‘Vietnam level’ concealment to cast a line for catfish concerns me. Clearly a caste of beings whose mindset I don’t necessarily understand. I write it off as too much Rambo – First Blood when they were young and impressionable. I’m inclined however to believe that once you’re plumbing the depths of a suburban water source (for an inedible fish) dressed in Tiger stripe I think you’ve reached some sort of mental event horizon where I can no longer see you. Pun may or may not be intended.

In any event it got me thinking, as he pushed off from shore.

You know that lifeboat morality trolley problem? And everyone has agreed that cannibalism is the only way to survive. And now everyone is debating how best one should go about deciding who gets eaten? The egalitarian/libertarians are arguing about drawing straws.

While all this is going on… you should probably nonchalantly pick up an oar. And then viciously… but surprisingly… smack the fattest person on head as hard as you possibly can. Even if you don’t kill them… you can argue their… eh… disability now marks them as the weakest link in your lifeboat. Sure people might be angry with you for bypassing the process. But really, since they are still alive… they will (likely) be relieved. Also you have an oar… and have demonstrated that you’re not afraid to use it.

Also, doesn’t it make sense to eat the fattest person first?

Obviously this is more of a long term survival thing. Smashing people in the head with oars when Captain Sully has just splashed you down in the Hudson is a less desirable course of action…. and may be frowned upon.

 

NOT a murder mystery

I forgot to lock my front door last night.

Terry Pratchett has this great paragraph about how, in Ankh-Morpork, there are actually very few murders. Mostly dead bodies are considered suicide. Walking in the Shades after dark for example, is suicide.

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While Johannesburg likely wasn’t used as a template for this Discworld metropolis (as far as I know) I feel it definitely ranks in the top five most Ankh-Morporkian cities on this particular plane of existence. The most glaring difference (which precludes Jo’burg from the top spot) is that instead of a brass bridge lined with hippos over the river Ankh (primarily used to dispose of dead bodies) we have a bridge over a train yard. (which broadly serves the same function). Also a bridge made of brass would have been stolen ages ago.

In any event, not locking your front door in South Africa is broadly considered suicide. (glad we made it!)

In all fairness in order to get into the master bedroom to murder us they’d still have to make it past the booby traps (the playroom strewn with caltrops/Lego), the vicious guard basset (oh who am I kidding) and there’s always the chance they might trip over the German Shepherd in the passage. I sleep like the dead, but all the commotion might wake the missus (who will then punch me, ‘Your turn’.)

Back when I was an (irresponsible) bachelor I slept with a Glock (.40S&W) underneath my pillow, 1UP and ready to rumble. It caused me endless frustration when girlfriends wanted to sleep over. (where is the Glock going to sleep?) Although savvy enough NOT to suggest they go sleep in the other room due to their presence deteriorating the defensive integrity of fort Joey, it generally elevated my already simmering levels of anxiety. (Clearly I had other qualities which glossed over some of the other more serious psychological… eh…  deficiencies)

Marriage has mellowed me somewhat (or turned the liquid cloudy, depending on how you look at it). These days instead of rolling out of bed and into my body armour I first have to go the cupboard and take it off a coat hanger. I also have to waste precious time taking my Glock out of the safe and cycling a round into the chamber. All this while under the added pressure of being murdered.

Its all very inconvenient.

 

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Bathtub Bushido

Apparently the noise humans find most comforting is the crackling of a fire, combined with the snoring of dogs. It’s apparently an ancestral thing. I can get behind that with out much further rationale.

Currently however I am getting an additional sensory input. That of damp German Shepherd.

I took the dogs to the park this morning at 5am before it got blisteringly warm. The basset hound being ostensibly lower to the ground than his counterpart and the fact that he is also a firm adherent of the ‘let no muddy puddle be left unplumbed’ school of dog waking, came home looking a tad worse for wear.

While I can abide a stinky Frenchman, my wife/his mother cannot. After a brief chase around the garden Le petite corporal was captured, harangued and then placed in the tub of torture.

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The German adding her input on techniques best suited to water board a baguette eater.

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It’s not so bad, here let me put this damp towel on your head.

After the basset hound we thought maybe we should give the German a go. None of us really relished the thought. The basset hound, once in the tub of torture, becomes super compliant. The German fights you the whole time. Alternating with shaking like a leaf. Which means I have to implement some doggie type Ju-Jitsu on her while the wife does stuff with shampoo and the garden hose.

For our sins (and because she is basically a 40kg sponge) we now get to sleep with the aroma of moist canine assailing our nostrils.

We probably deserve it.

 

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