Tuesday, April 06, 2004

l'il bean!

I so don't want to admit to this, but I just got sucked into Dogster. I was there looking for Fifi's dog Mason, and I couldn't find him, but I did discover that I could get the site to show me a randomized series of photos and factoids about dogs in the size category of my choice. And my choice--oh gosh, this is much harder than talking about my sex life--is the category they call, um,


Yes! I admit it! I like little dogs! I've already fallen for Twinkie, and I'm deeply afeared that after I finish this blog entry, I'll just have to sort of, you know, stop by Dogster for a minute. Sort of like the way I used to "just stop by" Pogo for an hour or so at a time to play that infernal game with the anthropoid cactus and the popping balloons.

Speaking of which, thank ha'shem for CyberChess. It may be absolutely, gratuitously, laden down with unneccesary CGI (the pieces, when they're captured, either burst into flames, melt into goo, or freeze and shatter; if you lose as many pieces as I do, the total effect is incredibly demoralizing) but at least I'm stretching my head a little, and eventually one hopes I will become a better chess player, against the inevitable day when AX demands a rematch for the trouncing I gave him the first time we played together.

But I was coming clean about my adoration of little dogs. The title of this entry is one of the aliases given to another Dogster denizen, whose given name is Frijolita. Frijolita (technically, "little girl bean") is not just a Chihuahua, but a Chihuahua/Rat Terrier mix. Which probably means she's as wily as she is barky, but she's just so darn cute with her little pink tongue sticking out. Am I going to turn into one of those women who carries a little dog around under her arm? Crazy cat lady, sure, I'm ready for that. I've been aspiring for years to be the woman at the end of the block whose house only gets visited by the bravest (or stupidest) kids on Halloween. But Chihuahua/Rat Terrier mix? The very idea raises a flood of images in my visual mind, and they all involve rhinestone collars, knockoff Faberge eggs, and long enameled cigarette holders in nauseating profusion.

Speaking for a moment of cats, I know one in Granada, Spain named Chorizo. Interestingly the word is not only a kind of sausage, but a synonym for "thief". The cat of my acquaintance was named "thief" for stealing a bit of sausage--how appropriate is that? He lives with friends of Slice's in a house in the Albaicin, the old quarter. Now he gets oxtail for supper and slips through the spaces between bricks that were old back when the Moors held Granada. Chorizo and I got along fine; I usually get along with cats, and until recently considered myself solidly a cat person. Perhaps lately I've been absorbing some mysterious, mind-softening radiation from Sirius, the dog star. Dog rays? I don't know if the standard design aluminum-foil helmet will protect me, but perhaps a good sturdy waterbowl? There are photos of me as a baby, up to my chubby shoulder in the dog's waterbowl. It would be fitting for me to wear one again.

A trivia note, one that is probably entirely false but what the hell. I've been told that the canid that is genetically closest to the wolf is--are you ready?-- the Standard Poodle. Yes, that ever-suffering, over-styled, toenail-polish-wearing pup with the pufflets of fur around its dainty ankles is the closest four-legged to the majestic, haunting, brooding wolf. Yes!

Which explains a lot to me about Toy Poodles. Bad enough being a Standard, where you still have some heft and through that, some dignity. But the Toy guys, poor kids. Lots of under-arm carrying, dainty liver-flavored nibbles, the ribbons, you name it. And the whole time they're thinking--here's your chance to imagine a threateningly growly voice with an unfortunately high pitch--we were WOLVES once, damnit! Wolves! Mighty predators!

Just wait. They're biding their time. One of these days the dog scientists will surmount the opposable thumb problem, and then we'll all be in for it. Better to make friends with them now.