Aug. 30, from Louie, Day 90

Hey, man,

Louie here.

Mellow Louie.

Pops, have you ever took the time to stare into a bowl o’ fresh kibbles ‘n’ really let yourself feel the colors?

The rich, rich chocolate browns?

‘N’ the shimmerin’ oranges?

‘N’ the reds so vibrant, they hurt your eyeballs?

Have you ever stuck your snout into a bowl of Mom’s dinner concoctions ‘n’ really FELT the slimy goodness of Chef Cesar?

‘N’ the tactile wonder of Purina One?

‘N’ the crunchy surprise of a wiener?

Have you ever let the sublime aroma of FRESH MEAT race up your nostrils ‘n’ swirl through your knuckle brain? (Oh, oops, sorry, man, that’s MY knuckle brain. You don’t got a knuckle in your head, but LOUIE — ah, so many many knuckles to be titillated by the excitin’ scents of freshly kilt chicken, or cow, or pig.)

Or have you ever let yourself become one with the cosmos of green?

The tender ivies, just waitin’ to be pooped on.

The mosses singin’ out at Louie to “Pee, Pee, PEE!”

The grasses of summer enticin’ you to nibble ‘n’ then BARF in wunnerful streams of crystal ‘n’ gold.

Louie greets Mom at the back door. (Say, is that day-old chicken in the garbage can?)

Pops, have you ever stretched out on your back in the yard ‘n’ wiggled ecstatically as the acorns crunched into your tired muscles ‘n’ kneaded away all your trials ‘n’ tribulations? Have you ever felt the amazin’ texture of DIRT grindin’ itself into your fur? ‘N’ then have you ever rolled over in the sun ‘n’ let the heat bake you into a crispy canine cookie? Till your hairs get so hot, not even a lovin’ Mom can pet them? ‘N’ the colors that dance behind your eyelids is so unique, they don’t even have names? They’re just — PAISLEY????

‘N’ have you ever REALLY tasted water? Lapped it up cool ‘n’ refreshin’ straight from the bowl?

I don’t know what’s come over me, Pops, but the world has become my psychedelic kaleidoscope, ‘n’ I think I could just lay here all day, driftin’ on the sensations pourin’ into my head ‘n’ never ever go out again to work or hike or even chase turkeys.

‘N’ I’m even startin’ to see the beauty of Dire Straits, day in ‘n’ day out on the CD player.

Why has it taken me so long to reach nirvana?

You really oughta come home ‘n’ join me, Pops.

It’s a far-out trip.

Peace, man,


P.S. I think Mom’s put somethin’ in my dinner bowl, but I just don’t care.

Pops replies:

Oh Louie, like wow, man – too far out.

Uh, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, etc. — to all your many questions.


Published in: on August 31, 2012 at 1:29 am  Leave a Comment  

Aug. 29, from Louie, Day 89

That’s it, Pops.

I’m goin’ on strike.

No more slobbery dog kisses for Mom when she staggers home from that EWP.

No more patrollin’ the perimeter for maraudin’ turkeys ‘n’ coyotes ‘n’ frogs ‘n’ bears.

No more throwin’ myself (at great risk of bodily injury) at the front windows to scare off invadin’ lawn-mowin’ orcs ‘n’ mail-deliverin’ orcs ‘n’ street urchins camped in the woods.

No more puttin’ my substantial hulk between Mom ‘n’ wayfarin’ strangers in the woods.

No more guardin’ Mr. Rav while Mom trots off on her errands.

I am done with her. Finished. Kaput.


I’m not an unreasonable dog, Pops. I diligently eat ALL my crunchy wieners, even though I suspect they’re packed with vile substances.

‘N’ I never EVER whimper when Mom gets that Concerned Look on her face ‘n’ INSISTS on rollin’ me onto my back so’s she can get a closer look at my flamin’ nether regions.

Does this leash make my butt look fat?

But ENOUGH is ENOUGH!!!!!!!

I was takin’ care of all of my many red hots all by myself, thank you, ‘n’ even though they was puttin’ me into a very cranky (‘n’ lethargic) mood, Mom had NO CALL to trick me into Mr. Rav with promises of a nice afternoon hike on the Towpath.  I had NO IDEA what she was up to until Mr. Rav turned into that evil, evil parkin’ lot, ‘n’ I was reduced to pleadin’ most piteously, “Don’t do this to me, Mom! Please, don’t don’t DON’T!!!!”

“For gosh sake’s Lou,” Mom said as she yanked me outta the safety of the back seat, “be a MAN!!!”

‘N’ she drug me into that terrible, terrible place where first they weighed me (“My, but he’s a big boy,” the wicked receptionist said), ‘n’ then they tried to stick a thermometer up my butt (“I don’t think that’s a good idea,” Mom said, temporarily regainin’ her sanity. “His sore butt is the reason we’re here”), ‘n’ then while Mom sat blithely in the examinin’ room readin’ her trashy novel, REFUSIN’ to PROTECT ME, the Machiavellian lady vet drug me to her evil torture chamber ‘n’ violated my manhood.

Ow ow ow ow ow ow ow!!!!!!

‘N’ tears rolled down my jowls as we drove home, ‘n’ I wouldn’t let Mom hug me. Even though she tried to make up to me by givin’ me a big heapin’ servin’ of crunchy wieners for a surprise midday snack.

Oh, I ate it, Pops, ‘cuz I never turn down MEAT (or meat byproducts), but it’s gonna be a cold day in heck before I forgive Mom for THIS travesty.

You leave town, ‘n’ she just loses all her senses. If she’d’ve let nature (‘n’ my tongue) take its course, I could’ve had all these screamin’ itchies taken care of in a month or two. So what if I was tearin’ out all my hairs? It’s still summer. I could use a little personal air conditionin’. So what if it was gettin’ a little difficult to poop around my bulgin’ glands? So what if I was the same color as Mr. Rav? It contrasted nicely with the black hairs I hadn’t tore out yet. So what if the pain was makin’ me psycho? Like Mom ISN’T?????

So I’m goin’ on strike. ‘N’ if Mom thinks I’m cuddlin up with her tonight —

“Oh, Louie, it’s dinner time, ‘n’ it’s packed with leftovers from my Pepperoni Pasta Skillet Dinner!”

Sorry, Pops. Gotta sign off. Mom cooked MEAT for dinner.

Ow ow ow ow ow ow ow!


Pops replies:

Oh Louie, I realize the words – “it’s for your own good” – don’t mean much to you. But ya gotta understand, the evil place Mom takes you to makes you feel better. In a hurry. Yes, the indignity of it all. Yes, the pain. But, in the end, all will be better.


Published in: on August 29, 2012 at 9:37 pm  Leave a Comment  

Aug. 28, from Louie, Day 88

Well, Pops, the whole darned neighborhood is in a canine uproar.

‘N’ THIS time, it’s only 20 percent my fault — maybe even less.

Here’s how everythin’ went wrong (‘n’ when you read all about it, I’m sure you’ll agree with me).

We was takin’ an evenin’ stroll around the neighborhood after Mom talked to you on the dumbphone, ‘n’ we was havin’ a most pleasant time. The cool breezes was takin’ my mind offa my flamin’ red butt, ‘n’ the sun had gone down, so it wasn’t blindin’ me in the eyes. We weren’t climbin’ any hills, neither, so even Mom was havin’ a good time.

Well, we was up on Eaglenest at the place with the greenhouse when we happened to pass Tiger takin’ the Barbaras for a walk. We didn’t really stop to chat, ‘cuz Mom didn’t think I was in a very friendly mood, what with my infirmities, ‘n’ she didn’t want me bitin’ Tiger’s head off. But it’s pertinent to the storyline that you know Tiger ‘n’ the Barbaras was out ‘n’ about.

Louie takes a refreshin’ break durin’ his mornin’ hike on the Towpath.

We did a most refreshin’ double, ‘n’ we was just comin’ up on the Zaidans house, ‘n’ I was strainin’ at my leash, achin’ for a piece o’ Stella.

‘N’ Pops, my prayers was answered. ‘Cuz on the corner of the Barbaras’ house, there was Stella ‘n’ Ms. Zaidan, headin’ right at us!!!!!

‘N’ I had the advantage of surprise, ‘cuz I’m black, ‘n’ they couldn’t see us under the trees, whereas Stella is white, ‘n’ I could count every one of her nefarious hairs!

So, of course, I growled ferociously.

Stella responded instantly in like manner.

‘N’ we both lunged madly at each other from opposite sides o’ the street.

Well, Pops, there woulda been bloodshed, ‘cuz both Mom ‘n’ Ms. Zaidan was burnin’ rubber ‘n’ despite all her joggin’ rituals, Ms. Zaidan was startin’ to lose her grip.

“Darn it, Louie!” Mom hollered. “Stop! Stop! Stop!”

In a pig’s eye, Pops. I was frothin’ at the mouth, just achin’ to get my fangs in Stella’s throat.

‘N’ then a most peculiar thing happened.

The Barbaras come around the corner in the dark, ‘n’ Tiger was IMMEDIATELY entangled in Stella’s leash.

‘N’ as the humans tried to untie THAT knot, who should come trottin’ down Canyon Trail but Ms. Byard-Carney ‘n’ one o’ her lady friends, walkin’ THEIR dogs, ‘n’ THEY got tangled up with Tiger ‘n’ Stella.

Pops, it was a mad blur of fur ‘n’ leashes under the streetlights, ‘n’ darned if I know who was winnin’.

‘Cuz Mom, in a most unsociable fashion, took advantage of the mayhem to haul me up Ms. Sandra’s driveway ‘n’ along the back o’ our house to the gate, ‘n’ she booted my tender bottom into the backyard ‘n’ I was securely separated by iron chainlinks from the whirlin’ dervishes entertainin’ the rest of the neighbors of Canyon Trail.

But that didn’t stop me from standin’ at the gate ‘n’ howlin’ until the party down on the street finally broke up.

Gosh, there’s still bits of fur floatin’ on the night breezes.

What an excitin’ walk!

If only (you guessed it) Mom had took pictures.

Your most exhilarated,


Pops replies:

Oh Louie, you rascal. You incited that riot, my boy — you set in motion all the right things. Good job!!!


Published in: on August 28, 2012 at 9:29 pm  Leave a Comment  

Aug. 27, from Louie, Day 87

Hi, Pops,

Louie here.

Louie of the soggy bottom.

Whilst me ‘n’ Mom was sleepin’ most comfortably this mornin’, Mother Nature crept in with a sneak attack of raindrops of a very MALEVOLENT variety, ‘n’ as a result, we’ve been fightin’ flash floods ALL DAY.

It started with our mornin’ hike, which Mom restricted to the neighborhood ‘cuz there was RIVERS of water streamin’ down the driveway when we finally awoke.

I was all for sloggin’ through the Chuckery anyway, summer storms be darned, but Mom said we would surely be sucked into a mud pit, so I was forced to settle for a quadruple double on the sidewalks of Palisades ‘n’ beyond. ‘N’ I must admit, Mom was most wise in her decision. We woulda been swept into the mighty Cuyahoga by mudslides ‘n’ typhoons if she’d’ve left the route up to me. So instead, we doggedly waded through the backed-up storm sewer water on Eaglesnest ‘n’ Malvern until I was done with my poopin’, ‘n’ then we swum home for a yummy breakfast of wieners ‘n’ kibbles. (They was crunchy wieners this time; Mom was mumblin’ about heart worms as she prepared my breakfast, ‘n’ though I didn’t detect no worms wigglin’ through my breakfast, the texture of my wieners was most definitely on the nutty side.)

Mom had PROMISED me a most entertainin’ mornin’ hosin’ down Mr. Rav ‘n’ scrubbin’ the kitchen floor, but the steady rain nixed both plans, so we was forced to switch instead to tossin’ out more junk from the closets. (Mom got quite misty-eyed, diggin’ through one o’ her boxes crammed with clippin’s from her college days ‘n’ early years at that EWP, ‘n’ she regaled me with quotes from some o’ her very best stories, ‘n’ then we dumped ’em all in the trash ‘n’ felt much lighter for it.)

We was both keepin’ a nervous eye on the weather as the clock ticked down to our Pre-Work Walk time, ‘n’ darn it, Mother Nature was tormentin’ us most wretchedly. Every time it looked like there was gonna be a break ‘n’ Mom was reachin’ for my bling, the clouds would laugh at us evilly ‘n’ dump another  gazillion gallons of rain on our poor overworked spoutin’.

“Moooooooooooooooommmmmmmmmmmm,” I said, crossin’ my legs, “I gotta go WALK before you leave me!”

“I know, Lou,” Mom said, “but look at it out there! The streets is elbow-deep in rainwater, ‘n’ the devil strips is turnin’ into quicksand!”
“Make it stop, Mom,” I demanded. “Or I’m gonna have a really bad accident!”

So Mom sighed, smeared us both with gobs o’ sunscreen, sprinkled our heads with hot red pepper flakes, cranked up the Springsteen ‘n’ tore into a ritual Drought Dance.

Only her old lady’s weather magic was no match for Mother Nature, ‘n’ it just kept rainin’.

‘N’ I started sneezin’ from all the peppers I snorted up my snout.

We finally hit the point of no return, ‘n’ even though it was still rainin’ turkeys ‘n’ stingrays, Mom blinged me up ‘n’ we waded out for our Pre-Work Walk.

Pops, I never been so wet in my life — not even the time you ‘n’ Mom took me to the dog wash could compare. My lovely black fur coat was soaked before we even hit the end of the driveway, ‘n’ Mom’s little umbrella was leakin’ like a sieve.

“We oughta turn back, Lou,” Mom said.

“Can’t do that, Mom,” I insisted. “I gotta pee!!!!!”

So we dog-paddled up to the island, passin’ many jolly fishes along the way, ‘n’ for a change o’ pace, we did the backstroke down to the Chivalrous Neighbor’s. There was a mighty honkin’ behind us, ‘n’ we had to row outta the way to let the QEII go by (while all the passengers waved to us quite cheerfully from the decks) ‘n’ as we made the turn for home, we was rudely overtaken by some donkeys tuggin’ a canal boat that had been bumped off course by the storm.

Louie in happier, drier days.

Fortunately, there was no thunder boomers, so at least we wasn’t struck by lightnin’.

I was gettin’ most exhausted by all the swimmin’, but a school of dolphins come by ‘n’ generously allowed us to cling to their fins while they splashed down Canyon Trail, ‘n’ they flipped us onto our front doorstep ‘n’ scoffed when Mom tried to pay ’em taxi fare. Them dolphins is really stand-up guys.

I was so water-logged, I could barely drag myself into the foyer, but then Mom made everythin’ right by pullin’ out her fluffiest towels ‘n’ rubbin’ me down till I could barely stand the ecstatic sensations.

“Lou,” Mom said sternly, starin’ at my nether regions, “get a grip on yourself!”

“Right, Mom,” I said, ‘n’ blushed to the end of my tail.

So that’s been our day, Pops, in Akron’s version of Atlantis. (Our Midnight Stroll was just as soggy, only the dolphins had all gone to bed by then, so we had to finish our laps on our own.)

I just hope tomorrow is dryer, ‘cuz I’m already feelin’ a distressful buildup of mildew between my claws, ‘n’ I don’t think I’ll EVER be able to shake all the raindrops outta my dumb ears.

Geez, Pops, what a disappointin’ summer. It’s either been so hot that we fry on the sidewalks, or so wet, our little house is turnin’ into an aquarium.

You MUST come home soon ‘n’ put things right. ‘Cuz NOTHIN’s been normal since you left town.

I think I’m comin’ down with a dreadful case of black mold, but with my fur coat, who can tell?

Your very wet,


Pops replies:

Oh Louie, the QEII? Ok, I believe every single word you sent. But, where oh where do the dolphins sleep?


Published in: on August 28, 2012 at 1:33 am  Leave a Comment  

Aug. 26, from Louie, Day 86

Dear Dad (‘n’ I use the term “dear” most loosely),

I am deeply, deeply hurt that you have called into question the integrity of my many lovin’ly written Letters From Louie.

Here I am, tryin’ on the one paw to entertain you each night so’s you’re not lonesome ‘n’ miserable while fightin’ the bears out there in the Stanislaus, ‘n’ on the other paw, tryin’ to keep Mom in line so’s she don’t go berserk in your absence, ‘n’ instead o’ being grateful — the both of you — she just snipes at me day in ‘n’ day out for bein’ a dog, ‘n’ now you, YOU of all people, is accusin’ me of violatin’ my poetic license.

I worked very, very hard to obtain that license (the tests is most rigorous for a dog who has to write with his claws ‘n’ never even graduated from preschool) ‘n’ I resent the fact that you not ONLY suspect that my literary musin’s is only 16 percent true, but you’ve also BROADCAST your suspicions to the whole Innernet World, alertin’ the licensin’ board to your TOTALLY FALSE accusations.

As you well know, if I don’t keep my letters at LEAST 70 percent true (on the average) my license will be revoked, ‘n’ just where will that leave you? You’ll be stuck in the Stanislaus next summer with letters that say nothin’ but bark bark BARK ‘cuz I won’t be allowed to embellish ’em with amusin’ conversations with Mom nor hilarious descriptions of my adventures at Bow Wow Beach.

Louie shows Mom how to assume the position for a most righteous belly rub.

Well, OK, I DIDN’T give Mom a belly rub. But only ‘cuz she don’t know how to lay on her back ‘n’ stick her feet ‘n’ arms up in the air like I do ‘n’ pant, but that’s the ONLY reason it didn’t happen exactly the way I wrote it. If I coulda tickled her belly (in a chaste way) I woulda, so that makes it ALMOST true, ‘n’ you shoulda appreciated it for what it was.

‘N’ OK, maybe it was Mom’s idea all along instead of mine to hike up the Palisades, but it made for a nice storyline, didn’t it?

‘N’ yes, just as we approached the OTHER train tracks as we was circlin’ back from Merriman Road, somethin’ like a Rocky or a groundhog or a possum snuck outta the trees, ‘n’ I tore after it so fast, Mom thought she was gonna have to plop down on her butt again, but I regained my senses in the nick o’ time ‘n’ we didn’t go hurtlin’ down to the tracks  below.

‘N’ OK, I probably DID tear a stuffed Y2K toy to shreds while Mom was preoccupied with other stuff in the closet, but it was outdated seein’ as how it’s now 2012, so no big whoop.

‘N’ it was so darned hot out, Mom had to throw me outta the shower instead of the other way around.

But all them slight deviations from the truth was made SOLELY for the sake of plot — you know, kinda like consolidatin’ events from a book so’s it makes for a faster paced movie? ‘N’ that’s all VERY LEGAL. Ask ANY screenwriter.

So it’s very VERY rude of you to imply that my stories is gross fabrications. They are ALL thoroughly justified Louie flights of fancy, ‘n’ if you’re gonna pick at ’em — well, it’s a good thing for you that you’re almost home, ‘cuz if you’d made these ABSOLUTELY BASELESS accusations back in June,  I’d’ve been forced to turn in my computer password, ‘n’ you woulda had NOTHIN’ to read all these many many months but Mom’s wearily repetitious complaints about how HIDEOUS her night has been at that EWP.

So if you don’t take back your most hurtful words (‘n’ make it right for me with the licensin’ board) I may haveta go black for the rest o’ the summer ‘n’ you’ll have nothin’ to read tomorrow but Mom’s in-CESS-ant whinin’.

So there.

Do the right thing, Pops.

I am patiently waitin’ for your reply.


Pops replies:

Oh Louie, please accept my sincere apology for the gross misrepresentation of your literary veracity. Why, the brightest part of every day is the moment when I see your daily letter, and I will be forever in your debt for the humorous musin’s that I receive from you. So, I’ll make it right with the board; fear not, your license is safe.


Published in: on August 27, 2012 at 1:28 am  Leave a Comment  

Aug. 25, from Louie, Day 85

Well, Pops, I been tryin’ real REAL hard, ‘n’ unless somethin’ real REAL bad happens in the next half-hour (you know, bad like a Rocky sneakin’ in the back door or Maria’s Uncle Buck poopin’ in the side yard), it’s ENTIRELY possible that me ‘n’ Mom will go to bed tonight without Mom gettin’ seriously mad at me even once.

I told you I was gonna sleep on the floor last night ‘cuz Mom was so cranky, ‘n’ I did — for a while. But then the floor got awful hard, ‘n’ the pillows on the big bed was lookin’ awful soft, so when Mom wasn’t lookin’, I sneaked up onto the bed, ‘n’ without ever wakin’ up, she rolled over so’s I could cuddle up against her, ‘n’ we slept the night away like two tarnished spoons.

When the alarm box went off, I was ready for a rip-snortin’ hike, but instead, I waited patiently while Mom moaned ‘n’ groaned through three snooze alarms, ‘n’ when she finally pried open her eyelids ‘n’ reached out to give me my belly rub, I most mag-NAN-imously offered to give HER a belly rub instead. ‘N’ even though my claws kept snaggin’ on her sleep shirt, I did such a fine job that she was purrin’ by the time the fourth snooze alarm most incommodiously assaulted my tender canine eardrums.

Mom was so mellow, she offered to take me on challengin’ hike up to the High Bridge, but I said, “Nope, Mom, you had a terrible bad shift at that EWP last night. Why don’t we just take it easy ‘n’ stroll on up to Merriman Road ‘n’ back?”

“Well, golly, Lou,” Mom said, “that would very conveniently fit into my busy schedule today, but are you sure you want to deny yourself a gallop through the woods?”

“It’s too hot out, Mom,” I said most bravely.

“Deal!” Mom said happily.

‘N’ I swallowed my disappointment ‘n’ led her on a sedate climb up Palisades ‘n’ back. (Well, truth is, it WAS very hot, ‘n’ the last o’ the pickin’ chicken mighta been a little too ripe, ‘cuz I had a fearsome case of tummy rumbles, ‘n’ since I didn’t wanna offend Mom with any accidents in Mr. Rav, I settled for a neighborhood hike, ‘cuz I know lotsa flowerbeds along the way where the ivies quite nicely hide any evidence of intestinal distress.)

‘N’ I didn’t chase no cats nor turkeys nor tortoises.

Louie lookin’ for somethin’ bad to do.

Mom’s major housecleanin’ chore of the day was clearin’ out another closet in the bedroom so’s you have room for all your California mementos, so we spent a pleasant hour stompin’ on old Christmas boxes ‘n’ tossin’ out somethin’ called VIDEOTAPES from that Bryan Guy’s cartoon childhood ‘n’ disposin’ of nonfinancial papers from Mom’s Middle Ages. (She let me gnaw on a coupla minor toys, but I swear, Pops, I didn’t chew up nothin’ significant.)

‘N’ then we slogged around a double for our Pre-Work Walk, ‘n’ I didn’t carp ONCE about how hot ‘n’ stultifyin’ the afternoon had become. (But Mom kinda guessed that I was sufferin’ in my black fur coat, ‘cuz she plied me with fresh ice cubes as soon as we got home, ‘n’ they was most refreshin’.)

I even let her have the shower all to herself while she was performin’ her EWP cleansin’ rituals, ‘n’ despite the great temptation, I didn’t run off with her towels, even though it’s great fun to race down the hall with the towels in my mouth ‘n’ Mom drippin’ all over the carpets as she chases behind me ‘n’ howls most piteously. (Humans look awful funny without their clothes — extra funny when they’re wet to boot, dontcha think?)

‘N’ I give her a MOST cheerful goodbye as she left for that EWP, even though it meant I’d haveta spend all afternoon ‘n’ evenin’ alone without anyone to play tag with or scratch me behind the ears. But I bravely withstood it, for the sake of peace in the household. ‘N’ Mom was SO happy to discover when she got home that I hadn’t broke nothin’ in her absence that she give me a FULL walk around the block for my Midnight Stroll, ‘n’ she loaded up my dinner bowl with wieners minus the crunch.

Maybe there’s somethin’ to be said for this bein’ good business.

I dunno. I’ll have to think about that.

In the meantime, my goodness has made for a very borin’ letter, but at least Mom is givin’ me great big hugs again, ‘n’ I suspect that come storytime, there will be a big fresh Milkbone nestled in my pillow.

‘N’ in your absence, it don’t get much better’n that.

Your very good,


Pops replies:

Oh Louie, most of your letters are at least 87.9 percent true. This one … well, this one is perhaps 16.3 percent true. Dontcha think?

Published in: on August 26, 2012 at 12:51 am  Leave a Comment  

Aug. 24, from Louie, Day 84

Aw geez, Pops, I’m back in the doghouse.


Just ‘cuz I tried to kill Mom.


WHY does this STUFF keep HAPPENIN’ to me???????

I was bein’ VERY contrite, sleepin’ the WHOLE NIGHT in the big bed, plastered right up against Mom ‘n’ not complainin’ even ONCE about her snorin’. ‘N’ when the alarm box went off, she was almost back to her usual lovin’ self (meanin’ she give me a VERY thorough belly rub to make up for skippin’ her obligations durin’ her snit yesterday). ‘N’ the belly rub felt soooooooooooo good that I didn’t object ONE LITTLE BIT when she ‘xplained to me that she had a luncheon date, ‘n’ our mornin’ hike was gonna be limited to the sidewalks of the Merriman Hills instead of the mountains of the Cuyahoga. (To tell you the truth, it was already gettin’ most uncomfortably hot, so walkin’ under the big oaks of our neighborhood was very appealin’.)

So I pranced happily down the driveway, only mildly disappointed that we wasn’t goin’ bear huntin’ but still pleased that I was gonna poop at Paula Owens’ house.

Well, we made our rounds without incident, ‘n’ we was headin’ toward the island to make the turn back home when suddenly — oh, I don’t know why. Who can ‘xplain FATE???? — I decided I wanted to turn up toward the Chivalrous Neighbor’s house instead ‘n’ nose around the park perimeter.

We was still a few seconds ahead of Mom’s busy schedule, so she said OK, it wouldn’t hurt neither of us none to stretch our cream of chicken thighs a few steps farther.

So I merrily drug her to the edge of the park, right where it plunges over the hill ‘n’ down to the railroad tracks without no fence to catch us, ‘n’ just as I was circlin’ for another pleasant poop……

A strange CAT popped outta the bushes ‘n’ dashed down the hill.

I switched INSTANTLY into killer mode, ‘n’ with a mighty growl, I LUNGED for the edge of the ravine ‘n’ prepared to LEAP into outer space.
‘N’ poor Mom was scramblin’ ‘n’ pantin’ behind me, unable to get a grip in her old slippery Reeboks.

In my frenzy, I was gonna dash the both of us onto the tracks below, the consequences be darned. I had to have that CAT!!!!

So Mom did the only thing she could think of. (As she told me later, none too kindly) she suddenly remembered your words of wisdom to your novice hikers out in the Stanislaus — if you’re gonna fall, then drop down on your butt.

‘N’ that’s exactly what she did (mewling “OW OW OW OW OW!”) ‘n’ instead of me sailin’ over the cliff, there was suddenly 133 pizza-packed pounds of dead weight sittin’ — immovable — in the dirt behind me, ‘n’ I was yanked back MOST unceremoniously by the neck.

Well, I stomped ‘n’ pawed furiously, snortin’ ill wishes after that cat, but with Mom’s center of gravity planted firmly on the ground, I wasn’t goin’ nowhere, even though we was only six inches from the edge.

Louie ‘n’ his great big dumb ears.

Mom just reeled me in ‘n’ grabbed me by the ears ‘n’ gasped, “Louie, are you NUTS?????”

“It’s a CAT, Mom,” I said in self-defense.

‘N’ she pointed a tremblin’ finger down the hill. “What were you THINKIN’???? We could be lyin’ down there right now, with our brains spattered all over the railroad tracks!”

“I don’t got no brains to spatter, Mom,” I admitted humbly.

“Got that right,” she grumped. ‘N’ she slowly pulled herself to her feet, hopin’ most fervently that the neighbors hadn’t witnessed her ungainly slide onto her butt. (It really WAS kinda funny, Pops. I wish you coulda seen it. But me ‘n’ Mom had both been too busy at the time to snap a picture.)

Well, we both limped back home, me ‘cuz I think Mom crushed some important ligaments in my neck with my bling, ‘n’ Mom ‘cuz she landed on some very uncomfortable acorns, ‘n’ we spent the rest of the mornin’ snarlin’ at each other, ‘cuz, as you know, none of this was MY fault, dogs naturally chase after cats, ‘n’ Mom bein’ Mom couldn’t get offa my back for a little lapse in judgment.

So once again, I was most relieved to see Mom go off to that EWP so’s I could get a little peace. (‘N’ if this is what it’s gonna be like when she’s retired ‘n’ home all the time, I think I’m havin’ second thoughts about the whole thing. I don’t think I’ll survive her snipin’ at me 24/7.)

So we’re gettin’ ready for bed now, ‘n’ she’s not threatenin’ to lock me in the bathroom, but I think I’ll just sleep on the floor tonight, thank you, ‘cuz Mom is just too prickly to cuddle with.

You really need to get home soon, Pops, ‘cuz this is your Louie.

At the end of his rope.

P.S. This is a picture of me from the past. Mom liked it ‘cuz it shows my really dumb ears. I think that’s an insult, don’t you?

Pops replies:

Oh Louie, you certainly are an act-first, think-later kinda guy, huh? Or is it, act-first, no-think? Anyway, pulling Mom to her butt on acorns ain’t no kinda way to get more belly rubs. Sheesh, you should know better.


Published in: on August 25, 2012 at 2:02 am  Leave a Comment  

Aug. 23, from Louie, Day 83

Sheesh, Pops,

First Mom is ticked off at me, ‘n’ now you’re takin’ her side.

I am shocked, I tell you, SHOCKED, that you, as a human of the male persuasion, is linin’ up with Mom when it comes to matters of humpin’.


(Excuse the harsh language, Pops, but harsh times call for harsh words.)

I am bein’ grossly misunderstood ‘n’ misrepresented here.

First off, I didn’t get banished to the shed last night, ‘cuz Mom said I’d have too much fun with the Twisted Sisters. So instead, she locked me up in your bathroom, ‘n’ I had nothin’ to drink but toilet bowl water, ‘n’ no light to see with ‘cept your Ohio State night light, ‘n’ no company whatsoever but the radio, which Mom placed on the sink counter outta my reach ‘n’ programmed to play polka varieties, ‘n’ I had to put up with that ALL NIGHT LONG. There isn’t a jury in the world that woulda convicted me if I’d lunged for Mom’s throat in 4/4 oom-pah time when she finally let me out this mornin’.

But, no, I was in to appeasement by then, ‘n’ I meekly trotted out to the kitchen ‘n’ waited ever so patiently whilst Mom dawdled over her splash o’ coffee ‘n’ dithered over whether to put on shorts or long pants (even though by that point my tender bowels was screamin’ for relief).

I didn’t even protest too much when she refused to give me my mornin’ belly rub.

“Dogs who molest three-legged animals don’t deserve belly rubs,” Mom said haughtily.

Well, Pops, I swallowed my protests, but in my own self-defense, I gotta tell you, that was most DEFINITELY not my fault. That bitch was missin’ one o’ her FRONT legs, ‘n’ I come up on her from behind, so I didn’t even REALIZE until I was well-mounted that the darned dog was handicapped. Otherwise I woulda NEVER forced my attentions on her, ‘cuz I am Louie ‘n’ I am most sympathetic to those who have had the misfortune to lose an appendage, ‘n’ as SOON as I realized my mistake I hopped right off ‘n’ apologized most profusely. So there. I don’t wanna hear about no three-legged dogs again, OK?

Louie stares wistfully at the river, rememberin’ the days when he ‘n’ Pops was best buds.

ANYWAY, I was forced to take a most rigorous mornin’ hike without benefit of a belly rub, but I didn’t whine once as we climbed up from the river to the hills of Schumacher Park (although Mom whined a LOT, huffin’ ‘n’ puffin’ over the terrible beatin’ her legs was takin’. HER legs? Well, I got twice as many, ‘n’ they was on fire when we finally reached the top, but I bravely withstood it in silence, ‘cuz Mom had absolutely no sympathy whatsoever for MY trials ‘n’ tribulations. She can be very uncharitable when she’s bein’ self-righteously indignant.)

After such cold treatment, I fully expected nothin’ but dry kibbles for breakfast, but Mom relented enough to sprinkle a few pieces of chicken into my bowl, ‘n’ I slobbered over her in thankfulness.

“Don’t think you’re oughta the doghouse,” Mom sniffed. “It would just be most wasteful to let good chicken go bad.”

“Right, Mom,” I said, ‘n’ snarfed up breakfast before she could change her mind.
Well, I had to tiptoe around the house the rest o’ the mornin’ like I was on eggshells, expectin’ any moment that Mom would whip up her unwarranted wrath ‘n’ beat me senseless with a stick. So I didn’t chew no socks when she did her laundry chores, ‘n’ I didn’t leap up onto the big bed with my dirty paws as she was straightenin’ the linens, ‘n’ I didn’t dig a single hole to China as she was waterin’ her flowers, ‘n’ I begged her only once to play fetch with my little Buddies (which she grudgingly agreed to, but she throws like a girl ‘n’ it wasn’t nearly as much fun as when you ‘n’ me play).

It was such a tense mornin’, I was actually quite happy to see her finally leave for that EWP ‘n’ I was free to crawl up onto the couch ‘n’ have a good comfortable snooze. (Sleepin’ in the bathtub isn’t nearly as refreshin’ as curlin’ up in Mom’s shower, ‘n’ as for that toilet bowl water — yech!)

ANYWAY, I was fully expectin’ Mom to come home her normal self, ‘cuz she don’t normally hold a grudge this long, but she was smirkin’ as she come through the door, ‘n’ I knew that wasn’t good for Louie. ‘N’ that’s when she announced that you was TOTALLY on her side in the matter of our unfortunate excursion to Bow Wow Beach, ‘n’ now I’m just crushed.

How COULD you, Pops? How COULD you desert me? We’re GUYS!!!!! We have a bond here in all things involvin’ humpin’. It’s US against THEM! You ‘n’ me is supposed to be a team ‘n’ —

Oh, I get it now. You’re just lookin’ after your OWN self-interests, sacrificin’ Louie’s well-bein’ so you get a nice warm welcome home from Mom.

Shame on you, Pops. Shame on you.

Your most disappointed,


Pops replies:

Oh Louie, of course I unnerstand the male urges. But Louie!!!! A 3-legged canine? Hmm, so you say you didn’t realize it until the dirty deed was done. Hmm, I’m not so sure about that Lou. I’ve watched you. As soon as you enter Bow Wow Beach, you immediately size up the
options and then you eye the competition. It’s all a good for you, Lou.

But, I’m sure that Mom has forgiven you. And so do I.


Published in: on August 24, 2012 at 1:30 am  Leave a Comment  

Aug. 22, from Louie, Day 82

Hi, Dad.


Louie here.

(Double sigh.)

Louie of the great big dumb ears.

(Triple sigh. Sniff.)

Mom says she’s gonna make me sleep in the shed tonight, ‘n’ I can’t take any o’ my little Buddies OR my game o’ Twister with me.

‘N’ it’s just not FAIR. ‘Cuz it wasn’t ME who fed me pickin’ chicken. That was all MOM’s idea, ‘n’ now I’m bein’ punished for her indiscretions. Wrong, wrong, WRONG!!!!!

See, it happened like this. Mom went out shoppin’ this afternoon without me to give her guidance, ‘n’ when she come home, she was luggin’ a GREAT BIG PICKIN’ CHICKEN in her Louie shoppin’ bag.

“Mom!” I said, beside myself with joy.  “We just had pickin’ chicken a coupla days ago!”

“I know,” Mom said as she deposited the beast onto the counter, “but I wanted to try a lovely Thai chicken recipe tonight, ‘n’ it calls for a cup o’ shredded chicken meat, ‘n’ it just didn’t seem cost-effective to buy three uncooked boneless, skinless chicken breasts for six dollars when I can get a WHOLE COOKED chicken for $5.99. Your dad would be very proud of the savin’s.”

“The heck with the savin’s!” I said, slobberin’ all over the linoleum. “Let’s start pickin’!!!!”

‘N’ we spent many, many WUNNERFUL seconds rippin’ that chicken apart — two pieces for Louie’s enhancements, one piece for Mom’s dinner. Two pieces for Louie’s enhancements, one piece for Mom’s dinner. Oh, whooops! What’s that greasy glob o’ chicken fat doin’ on the floor? Guess I’ll haveta lick it up ‘n’ save Mom the trouble.

So between strippin’ the chicken ‘n’ COOKIN’ the Thai chicken ‘n’ vegetables (yech)  ‘n’ EATIN’ the chicken, Louie had quite the bellyful when Mom pulled out the bling ‘n’ said, “Bow Wow!”

‘N’ I danced deliriously to Mr. Rav, anticipatin’ a most joyous romp on the beach.
Well, Pops, things started goin’ bad as soon as we got through the first gate. ‘Member how I said Mom pulled out the “bling”?

Yup, she forgot my rainbow collar.

If it woulda been just the Akron dog park, she woulda turned around for home to get the right collar, but gosh, we’d driven many MANY miles just to get to Bow Wow Beach. So she shook her finger at me ‘n’ said most sternly, “If I let you onto the beach, you gotta behave, Lou.”

I was already so agitated, my eyes was rollin’ around in my head ‘n’ I was darned near ready to hump the gate. “Yeah, yeah, Mom,” I promised. “I’ll be good. Just let me IN!!!!!”

‘N’ I was. For as long as it took me to pee once.

‘N’ then the Chicken Madness come over me, ‘n’ I started humpin’ everythin’ in legs.


‘N’ I just looked at her insanely over my shoulder ‘n’ tore off for my next victim before she could catch up with me.

Oh, boy, Pops, I had my way with anythin’ that wouldn’t bite me. ‘N’ even when Mom caught up with me, she couldn’t haul me away ‘cuz I didn’t have no collar. (Hee hee hee.) All she could do was slap my butt ‘n’ apologize repeatedly to the many, MANY offended owners. ‘N’ while she was apologizin’, I was racin’ down the beach to the next innocent dog.

Whew, but that was one fan-TAS-tic race around the pond — Mom chuggin’ helplessly behind me ‘n’ me, fueled by crazy chicken enzymes, mountin’ two ‘n’ three dogs at a time.

Hey! Any o’ you guys wanna hump?

Well, by the time we circled back to the gate, I knew my seconds of freedom was numbered. A whole POSSE of infuriated dog owners was gallopin’ up behind me ‘n’ as I was ditherin’ over which way to bolt, Mom pounced ‘n’ blinged me up good.

‘N’ she wasn’t too gentle about it, neither.

“Louie,” she panted, “you are a DISGRACE to me ‘n’ your Pops! We’re goin’ home, young man, ‘n’ you aren’t gettin’ no chicken for dinner!”

‘N’ she drug me out the gate whilst the human posse crowded the fence, raised angry fists at us ‘n’ called me ‘n’ Mom unprintable names.

They weren’t accompanied by their dogs, however, ‘cuz they was all lazin’ around the beach, smokin’ cigarettes ‘n’ smilin’.

Well, Mom fumed at me all the way home, ‘n’ wouldn’t listen to none of my logical excuses about the madness of pickin’ chicken.

“You’re an ADULT, Lou,” Mom snarled, ” ‘n’ you need to show some MANNERS. I will never EVER take you to Bow Wow Beach again, ‘n’ you’re sleepin’ in the shed!”

‘N’ that’s the sorry state of affairs this evenin’. No chicken-enhanced kibbles. No sleepin’ in the big bed. No belly rubs. No storytime.

Mom is really ticked off.

DARN her for buyin’ that chicken, just DARN her.

Your most misunderstood,


P.S. I kept Mom so busy with my humpin’, we didn’t get no fresh pictures, so you’ll have to settle for one from quieter times at Bow Wow Beach.

Pops replies:

Oh Louie, you were humping everything on four legs? On three legs? Oh, I know it’s you just bein’ Lou, but sometimes you gotta restrain yourself, my boy. I can understand perfectly why Mom was so upset with you. I’da had you sleepin’ with the coyotes.


Published in: on August 22, 2012 at 8:25 pm  Leave a Comment  

Aug. 21, from Louie, Day 81

Finally, Pops, FINALLY! A WHOLE DAY of MOM, JUST TO MYSELF!!!!Golly, I didn’t think it was ever gonna happen again!’N’ we made the most of it.

First off, I was a gentleman ‘n’ let her sleep in a whole extra half-hour, ‘n’ my reward was a really REALLY good belly rub. (All belly rubs is good, but sometimes they’re too short ‘n’ sometimes Mom’s got other things on her mind ‘n’ forgets to scratch behind my ears, but this one was super perfect. You just don’t KNOW what you’re missin’!)

We’ve been havin’ stormy weather of late, so we didn’t hike in the hills, but Mom picked a nice stretch of Towpath where it wasn’t too muddy, ‘n’ we had a most fine walk. The only thin’ of innerest that we saw was a fella about the same age as that Bryan Guy, sittin’ like an Indian deep in the woods.

“Let’s go say hi,” I said, tuggin’ Mom into the forest. “Maybe he’s got Milkbones.”

“Let’s not,” Mom said, tuggin’ me back to the path.

“Why not?” I asked. “He looks friendly enough.”

“If he wanted company,” Mom lectured, “he’d be out here on the Towpath with the other folks. We’ll just leave him be.”

Hi, Pops! Are you comin’ home soon????

‘N’ Mom stubbornly drug me down the path. That’s one o’ her problems, Pops, if you ask me. She just don’t know how to mingle. She’s gonna have to learn to be more sociable, or she’s not gonna have no friends but you ‘n’ me in her retirement.

So we finished our walk ‘n’ tore into a frenzy of errands, visitin’ our investment property to scrape up more moss (I helped Mom out by findin’ a waste basket you hadn’t emptied ‘n’ doin’ it for you); stoppin’ at the adult beverage store to say hi to all the clerks who know Mom by name; zippin’ through the Freshway for some buns to go with our leftover Sloppy Bean Joes; droppin’ off our books at the library so we wasn’t in violation; ‘n’ pickin’ up MORE pills at the Walgreens. (Mom says once she’s retired, maybe she won’t NEED all them pills — especially the calmin’ kind).

A big front of thunder boomers chased us home, ‘n’ Mom said that was a sign that we should delay our housecleanin’ chores ‘n’ take a nap instead. So we did — but it wasn’t too restful by my way of thinkin’, with all the thunder crashin’ over our heads. But I was able to snuggle up to Mom ‘n’ bury my snout in her thighs whenever it got too scary, ‘n’ that was nice.

We spent the rest of the afternoon doin’ what Mom calls “putterin’ ” ‘n’ I call work. Gosh, but she sure does scrub down the shower a lot, don’t she? (“Wouldn’t have to, Lou, if someone with big black hairs wasn’t always sleepin’ in it.”) ‘N’ how come she insists on changin’ the bed linens just when they’re startin’ to smell real good? (“Ditto, Lou.”) But even I haveta admit, we had a smashin’ good time stompin’ on boxes for the recycle man. That was most definitely the high point of the chores for me.

Sunset at the Beaver Marsh.

‘N’ then Mom give me a wunnerful surprise by blingin’ me up for a most enjoyable Almost Sunset Walk at the Beaver Marsh. It wasn’t nearly as crowded as last time (prob’bly ‘cuz it was so darned muddy) ‘n’ we was able to take our time, moseyin’ amongst the weeds ‘n’ along the boardwalk ‘n’ down to the bend in the river. Mom took many pictures, some of which she’s gonna send you, ‘n’ I got to stretch my legs in a most satisfyin’ fashion.

So now there’s nothin’ left for us to do but wipe out them leftovers ‘n’ curl up in the freshly changed bed linens to read our books ‘n’ maybe munch on an after-dinner Milkbone.’N’ I’m gonna sleep REAL good tonight ‘cuz guess what, Pops? Mom is home again tomorrow, too!!!!!!Isn’t that just wunnerful?

Your very content,


Pops replies:

Oh Louie, such a perfect day for you. Pretty soon, all of your days will be like that. Won’t that be swell!
Published in: on August 21, 2012 at 8:36 pm  Leave a Comment