Yes Sir, May I Have Another? 

This was the week of June 26th.

To say it was an eventful week would be an understatement. So many issues collided I can’t exactly put them in order. But I can come reasonably close.

 I won’t bore you with all the gory details. Suffice it to say I had a root canal and crown buildup, neither of which went smoothly. I burned my arm while making pizza in the oven. My wife twisted her knee which already needs replaced due to her bone on bone problem with both knees. 

 The lights in our house would flicker every night around 9pm we had the power company out one night and they couldn’t find a problem. Then we lost our water. Turns out our well pump was going bad, and after the drilling company pulled the pump all 150 feet out of the well they found much of the wiring had rubbed away and also needed replaced. The bad wiring was causing the pump to pull in extra amps which made the lights flicker until it just gave up completely.

Early in the morning Clary who is not allowed on the bed, jumped on the bed so she could get a better vantage point to make a flying leap at Quinn. Which wouldn’t be horrible but she used me as a launching pad.

But it’s not all bad.

I have a scar on my arm from the burn which I can play with when bored. My mouth is still sensitive but I’m learning to chew on both sides of my mouth once again. Soon I’ll have another crown to add to the collection.
Denyce is gaining strength in her other leg and has mastered the art of the ‘hobble’. 
We experienced what it must have been like back at the turn of the century living for a few hours like barbarians without running water. And we only paid 1200 dollars for the experience. A deal at half the cost! 
I have two wonderful scars going down my inner thigh with which to remember Clary.

When Clary Growls

Clary growls for all occasions. She growls when she plays and when she sleeps.  Those are good growls.  When She is on alert and doing her job, or thinks she is doing her job her growls can be a very scary experience. It is not one of those wimpy growls, she is a big dog with a deep serious voice, of course chasing away the unwanted is her job. Most of the time she jumps up and barks which is scary in the ‘boo’ sort of way but not in the ‘Uh Oh…Something Bad’s About to Happen’ Sort of way.

Great Pyranees are not only guard dogs but they are nocturnal. One late night, around two in the morning I heard the growl, chances are she heard a deer outside, a truck going down the street, a leaf blowing in the neighbours yard. Trying not to wake Denyce I try to calm Clary before she goes into an all out barking frenzy.

The growl deepens, “Clary” I stage whisper, “come here!” As I tap the side of the bed. Clary loves to be touched and calms her right down. But as my fingers dangle off the edge of the bed in total darkness feeling for Clary’s big snout I can’t help but wonder if this is a good idea. There is always the possibility of losing a finger or two. But dismissing the thought as her growl comes again, I repeatedly call her over while trying not to wake my wife. But alas I hear my wife mutter in a groggy voice, “you ever wonder if it’s us she is thinking about attacking?


I know this is a question that has been burning deep within us all. Why did the dinosaurs leave Europe? As you all know, over 200 million years ago some of the dinosaurs packed up and migrated from Europe. A few points of interest here. 1. They moved after Pangaea (The earths super continent) broke apart . 2 Immigration laws were just as lax then as they are now. 3. Scientists know they migrated because of Facebook. No my wonderful but silly followers the dinosaurs did not document every single aspect of their lives by posting on Facebook, their fingers were far too clumsy to type. Instead scientists used Network theory, the same process used to track and study internet data like how we connect and move through Facebook. Because I value the readers of this blog I went to all the trouble to look up network theory so I could explain it to you. Unfortunately it requires a lot of words and graphs and all sorts of stuff.  I got rather sleepy after the first few words. So if you really want to know about network theory I suggest google, and please feel free to post your findings in the comment section below.

You may be wondering why I’m discussing this? You are not alone as I often wonder why I talk about certain things. Actually what caught my attention was the more specific question of, How did they cross the great waters? After all the super continent had broken up and I doubt T-Rex would have taken a boat even with an all you can eat buffet, I just don’t see it.  And air travel is out, their carry on would never fit in that little compartment above the seat.  If you have not traveled by air as of late, let me tell you the airlines have become very picky about that sort of thing.

The answers are two fold. 1. Land bridges of course. The second was more interesting. One scientist decided that they swam across the great waters. And how did he come up with this scientific theory? Through great research? No? Through fossil evidence? No, he surmised that elephants can swim, therefore dinosaurs should have been able to swim. Makes perfect scientific sense to me.

My beautiful wife is the Pennsylvania State Foster Co-ordination for the National Great Pyrenees Rescue. For the lay people, Great Pyr’s are very large dogs who were bred to guard livestock. They are also known in the dog world as ‘Gentle Giants’. How did my wife end up with such an illustrious title? After we adopted Clary we were so impressed with the organization my wife decided to give back and asked if they could use some help, perhaps she could field applications and such. And they said, “sure, You are now the Pennsylvania State Foster Coordinator” After reading this and commenting in the comment section below, and of course hit the follow button if you are not already a loyal follower to this blog, you should go visit the National Great Pyranees website http://www.nationalpyr.org and see about adopting, volunteering or make a donation.

Usually when my wife is conducting a phone interview with a potential Foster/Adopter I can be found immersed in the world of the video game Assassins Creed. My ears perk up when my wife gets to what NGPR (National Great Pyranees Rescue) calls the good, the bad, and the ugly. This is when my wife tells the potential Adopter about the traits of a Pyr in order to make sure the victim knows just what they are getting involved with in order to secure a good fit between man and beast.
I can’t help but grin as I listen to my wife go through the litany: the over abundance of the hair, (y’all only think you know about shedding) their need to bark, they are nocturnal, stubborn, expensive, they drool oh yeah baby we got drool! Did I mention the shedding? If you walk them off leash they become a ‘disapyr’! Oh they…dig, jump and climb oh my. Did I mention the hair? Better be ready it’s everywhere.

I find myself wondering who would want such a dog? But then I look at my two beasts and I know, you know, we all know. This my friends brings me to the whole point of this post. ‘What Have I learned From My Dog?’ The following 10 lessons I either learned or already learned but re-enforced by our dogs.
1. There is a lot of shit in life, it works out better for all if we clean up after ourselves.

2. At least once a day find something to bark at, and do so without regret or remorse.

3. I am the Master of my domain.

4. I can yell all I want and it won’t change much. Keep calm, stay strong, take a breath and square up your shoulders. Everything will be just fine

5. Don’t surround yourself with clutter, have a space for everything and keep everything in its place.

6. Don’t go cheap on a vacuum cleaner. Learn to enjoy vacuuming and do it often.

7. Always have something handy to wipe stuff up with.

8. Get up and go out every single day. It doesn’t matter if you are sick, drunk or tired. It doesn’t matter if it’s raining, snowing or blistering hot, go outside every single day

9. Just because you don’t hear it, doesn’t mean it is not there.

10. A little mud never hurt anything.
The following were some of the responses I got from asking the question on Facebook. Both to my friends and the good people at NGPR.
-You have to have patience Dig deep to understand others.

-When you finally figure out what’s going on, it’s not the real story anyway.

-Unconditional love

-Why sweat when you find your stuff in pieces – it’s just… stuff… right?

-Never buy expensive shoes, only cheap ones.

-dog hair is edible

-You can be young all the way up to Your last days.

-Forgiveness, no matter how badly they were treated before they meet you they give you the benefit of being a good person.

-Love is free, give it away often

-How to “rule” non-violently. My Stinson could control an entire pack with a look and a woof.

-Be happy to see everybody.
If you are considering introducing a pet into your family please find a rescue and adopt.

It is not the end of days, but it’s close! I can hear them descending down the mountain. Yes Brood V is just around the corner! The emergence started May 7th in Southern Ohio, and more of the emergence was spotted…heard in West Virginia and here in Pennsylvania on May 11. Yesterday Denyce and I heard them High on the mountains. It won’t be long, perhaps a day or two before the army of Magicicada Cassini, Magicicada septendicim and Magiciada septendecula will emerge on our front lawn.

Every 17 years the brood of cicadas emerges from the ground. The conditions have to be perfect. The soil 8″ below the ground reaches a perfect 64 degrees Fahrenheit and then it takes a light warm rain to trigger the rising. This past weekend we had two days of just such a rain.     

They rise for one reason and one reason only. To Mate! They emerge from the ground and climb the trees where they sing their songs of passion. They sing loud, proud and strong! A group of males can sing their chorus at 100db’s. 

Both males and females can mate several times laying about 20 eggs per mating, averaging 600 eggs. The mating lasts about four weeks After six weeks the eggs hatch drop to the ground and dig down where they wait for another 17 years. 
If you are still wondering what all the fuss is about, we have 11.5 acres the average emergence is 1.5 million cicadas per acre. It is bound to be a very long, loud month.

A Game Of Catch

I saw a YouTube video featuring dogs catching treats in slow motion. What makes it hysterical is most of the dogs could not catch. If you have a few minutes after you finish reading and commenting on this blog I recommend you head over to YouTube and type in the search bar “Dogs Catching Treats In Slow Motion’.

While watching television my wife threw a piece of popcorn to Quinn. Quinn is the most food driven dog I have ever come across. He watched it sail through the air and land on the ground he nosed it around, ate it and came looking for more with Clary on his heels. Denyce threw another piece which bounced off of Quinn’s nose. Clary’s response was the same. The popcorn would bounce off her head and hit the floor where she would scoop it up. Quinn to his credit started to “catch” on. A more pieces and he was bobbing his head and running around with his mouth open hoping this mana from heaven would fall into his mouth. Clary seemed to stick with the “bounce it off the face” method.

We suddenly heard an odd sucking noise which seemed to be coming from Clary. I tossed another piece of popcorn. It sailed threw the air bopped her on the nose and in the next second she opened her wet drooley mouth (which was indeed the source of the sucking sound) in an attempt to catch the popcorn which was already on the floor.

Persistence pays off. Most of the time their timing is so bad it brings us to fits of laughter, but now, weeks and several sessions later they sometimes manage to snag a little something out of the air especially if we aim at their mouths.

One Regret

The day was hot and overcast. I was sitting in the car outside the grocery store while my lovely wife Denyce ran in to grab a few items. Coming out of the grocery store I noticed a young man of about 18 yrs of age. What peeked my interest was his pants which were secured around his thighs. I was thankful he was wearing boxers. I could not look away it was like watching an accident about to happen. He gathered his four or five bags from the cart and started to walk to the parking lot he made it about 5 steps. I watched as he settled his bags around his feet and pulled up his pants with care, not all the way up just high enough to fit snuggly under his butt, he lifted his sunglasses off his nose, presumably to look for his car. Dropping his glasses back onto his nose he re-gathered his bags and started off in the direction he was looking. The young lad took about a dozen more steps. Stopped settled his bags around his feet and once again hitched up his pants, this time adjusting the belt making them tighter against his thighs. I guess it is okay for him to expose his crotch and butt but God forbid anyone sees his knees! As he gathered his bags and once again set out on his journey I am really regretting I didn’t honk my horn as he passed in front of the car.

%d bloggers like this: