Monday, January 4, 2010

Of Dogs and Blogs

A couple of years ago, there were two things I said I would never do. Okay, there were more than two. But two of them, that happen to rhyme, are: never get a dog, and never start a blog. I now have a two-year-old golden retriever named Finn. As you can see, he's very handsome. The nice thing about having a handsome dog, when you're une femme d'un certain age, is that you can still get all the flattering attention from strangers that you used to get when you were young and beautiful. Only now it's all about the dog. I can't tell you how many people stop me on the street to tell me how gorgeous my dog is. It's almost as good as having strange men in business suits give me "that smile," or leather-clad guys almost fall off their motorcycles as they pass me standing on the corner. Neither of those things has happened for awhile--but when I'm with Finn, I get just as much attention, if not more--and now it's sweet, not obnoxious, because dog people are pretty much uniformly cool. 

And of course I love my big 95-pound lummox of a dog. Now that he's housetrained and, um, less into trying to date my son's friends. Or anyone else who comes to our house. We didn't "unman" him until this past fall, but it has calmed him down a lot. Not so good is the fact that he now wants to eat, like, all the time. Freud was right about the economy of desire--it's got to go somewhere.

About the blog, I guess I'm more ambivalent. I can't take it out for walks, and it doesn't put its furry head on my lap when I watch old movies. Like Finn, it takes up a fair amount of my time. Unlike Finn, it doesn't retrieve, or act excited when I come home. Strangers don't tell me how beautiful it is.

But, it does help exercise my mind, like Finn keeps me outside, running around the back acres. Both are invigorating.

I am definitely keeping the dog. The blog, I'm not so sure about. I'm going to give it some more thought, and see how I feel next week. Or the week after.

Here's a weird thing I've noticed--the Internet is a veritable blog graveyard! I notice all the dead blogs when I go looking for images--there are tons of them. This got me thinking about how it's like a universe unto itself--I mean, the web will probably never run out of space. So all these dead blogs--of which mine may soon be one--are like so much cosmic debris, floating in cyberspace. Virtual junk, historical detritus.

Interesting--someone should write a sci-fi novel about it. Not me, of course. William Gibson or somebody like that.

I may or may not be back with more of the Bard Blog. For awhile, however, I think I'm going to spend more time with my dog.

Thanks for reading.


  1. Just remember Gayle--the dead blogs will be around much longer than you. You have created something that will live on forever. And someday--some pimply-faced teenager Googling Juliet for a quick glimpse of her boobs--will read what you wrote. And say "man, I like her dog."

    I enjoyed this blog post most of all. Your style and wit works with Shakespeare and daily life. Whatever you decide...don't stop writing.

  2. I found a fellow poet and found not one comment on each of her heart-spilt bloggs, and have thus commented on lots of her present and past posts to hopefully guide her with encouragment and perseverance, and hope you will do the same likewise! You are my first blogg where I struggled with my own intelligence, and while this may seem a bad aspect to some, I take it like a game of chess, as in it is better to play someone who beats you, opposed to someone you can beat, as you can only better yourself with a sword mightier than your own pen! And your writing is truly a sword that demands attention and respect of a formidable academic opponent than my humble pen! And while opponent may be contrived of a hostile force, in this instance it is a welcome tuition, as to become the teacher from a student is an embracing visionary warmth. So please guide on.

    I had a Labrador dog once, called Jack, and he was stolen: he was my best friend, and in some ways still is, despite the long passage of time! Enjoy your time together, and treasure your memories, as theirs is so short while ares can be quite long, as in our time here on earth. Take care. Bye.

  3. Thanks for that kind comment--I appreciate it a lot. You are right about dogs-their short time here on earth teaches us to live for the moment, I think. I hope you find another canine companion--it's really quite lovely to have a friend who asks so little and gives so much.

  4. My son should be going to university this year, and he has so many friends in Chester that he is regretably going to leave behind; it's sad really that we have to part with intimate friendships, and while many of his friends might keep in touch conversely through whatever means, company itself is no comparison! And while he probably will make a great many friends at university, they too will probably part their individual respective ways. Lifes like that for many young persons on their academic journeys. Pets too can be left behind, which is sad for both parties. Growing up with a dog can be a loving experience, as it was for me, as I received little love and attention from my large family, but our little dog loved us all unconditionally in a big way. Thank you. Take care. Bye.

  5. In some ways, life is kind of like "shedding," isn't it? One collects friends, keeps them for a time, then sheds them as they or you change--personally or geographically. I think in earlier times people lived in the same town or city for their entire lives, and weathered their life-changes without losing touch with people the way we do today. It's a paradox that, now that we have so many ways to keep in touch, we lose people so much more easily. Once again, dogs win out over people--they don't care if we change our appearance, our careers, our hobbies. They love us anyway.
    It sounds trite, but there's a lot we can learn from them, I think. They don't dwell on the past, or worry about the future...
    But your son has a great period of life ahead of him just now--even if those friendships don't last, the college years are wonderful in so many ways!

  6. I thought about the origins of dogs once, and marvelled at how many breeds there are. I tried to place them in a family tree with wild dogs as perhaps the most obvious linage. I thought of the wolf, dingo and the fox, and while I know their are some other wild dogs (I am not studied in this particular field), isn't it a wonder how many breeds have come from so few possible sources! And it just goes on and on with all the mongrels!

    My son is 'very' socialable and likes to party, so I'm sure he'll fit in very well with the collage fraternity! Ha. And why not, I have a strong philosophy of work, rest and play - and preferably in that order! Ha.

    Dogs have been honoured above all other pets as being 'mans' best friend', I think in this day and age it should be ammended to 'humans' best friend'. Thank you. Take care. Bye.

  7. There's something in the canine DNA that allows for all these breeding possibilities, I once read. The whole dog breeding culture is pretty weird, though--I only found out about it when I was "shopping" for my dog. It's really another (strange) world...

  8. Thinking about it, we humans have lots of creeds, resulting in many variants of skin colour: so in a lesser way we are similar.

    Just found out my son has got an interview at a London University, which is where he wanted to study, so I'm pleased about that. Thank you. Take care. Bye.