Monthly Archives: February 2014

No sleep ’till Brooklyn

Or past 8 AM anyways. The days of sleeping in are behind me now that the dogs have taken to a newly minted morning ritual, which they have worked long and hard to perfect, in order to precisely shave off yet another quality of life point for me.

The dogs are waking up earlier and earlier everyday and unfortunately, so am I.

I’m not sure how or exactly when this all started, but at some point, Mack & Peterbilt collaborated on creating a new way to be total pains in the ass. I can see it now: Mack and Pete sitting at the table with coffee and cigarettes, late at night. Mack washes a couple of aspirin down with another shot of Jim Beam and massages his temples. Peter licks his paws again. The frustration is high. “The latest report shows Treat Lady is happy, Peterbilt. We must find a way to break her spirit. You’re head of the Destroying Things Department, what have you destroyed his week?”

“A paiw of sneakuhs, suh. (Peter can’t say his r’s) But they tuwned out to be Dad’s.”

“God Dammit! I told you that you need to watch that! Dad’s shoes are big, Treat lady’s are small! Do you see what you’ve done?!? No wonder she’s in a good mood! She hasn’t had any thing destroyed of hers for over a week! As head of the Foul Smells department, I’m implementing an Emergency Treat Lady Crop Dusting for then next 6 hours while we trying to figure out a contingency plan. Please excuse me briefly while I commence my first airstrike.”

(A few minutes elasp. Peterbilt licks his crotch in Mack’s absence. Mack returns)

“Ok, we don’t’ have much time. Quickly now, what does Treat Lady love? List it off, GO!”

“Dead birds? Old socks? Sticks?”, says Peterbilt.

Mack face palms. “You, imbusile! Those are all things YOU like! Have you not been paying attention?!? Think! What does Treat Lady do often?”

Peterbilt is temporarily distracted by a crumb on the floor. He licks it up and thinks for a moment. “Well, she often comes home and dwinks wine while gwiping about huh job.”

“Good, but not good enough. She keeps her wine on the counters and I don’t exactly blame her for griping about her job. What else?”

“She likes to wead on her iPad, but Opuhwation Bitch at Mom was employed 2 yeaws ago and is still in force. I’ve bitched and whined at her evewy time she’s sat on the couch with that howwible IPad this week. She’s taken to weading in the bafwoom now”, says Peterbilt, beaming.

“Still good, but we need something more as the same old tricks aren’t doing it anymore,” says Mack.

Peterbilt burps and then realizes, “She loves to sleep! That’s it, Dad! Take away her sleep and she will be miserable again!”

“Yes!!!! That’s it! I knew you would be useful to me one day! We’ll go about it like this: You wake up at the first sign of daylight and start whining. The longer she ignores you, the louder and more obnoxious you get.”

“But what if Dad wakes up instead?,” questions Peterbilt.

“I wouldn’t worry about that. It hasn’t happened yet and I doubt it will now.” Mack excitedly lights a cigarette. “So whine until she wakes up. I’ll hear her letting you outside and feeding you and then I’ll chime in with my shrieks so she can forget going back to bed to get any more shut eye. She’ll have to feed and potty me in order to get me to shut up. Then, I’ll run in the bedroom and jump in her spot on the bed so she has no room to lay back down. This will surely make her miserable. Plus, now we will get breakfast earlier. Bonus!”

“You so smawt. Dis plan is gweat.” Peter wags his nub in evil glee.

Both dogs cackle, “Buh haha hah ha! Buh hah hah hah!”

I’m so glad I’m leaving for vacation today.

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Bring on the coffee, more Bulldog Haiku

Up every 2 hours

Nobody gets any sleep

When dog has the trots.


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Drill Sergeant Mack

It used to be that we would bring Mack along when we went up north when we wanted to relax, because compared to Peterbilt’s meth-head energy level, Mack was the “easy dog”. Sadly those days are behind us.

Years ago, in 2010, Mack ballooned to a weight of 101 lbs. Outweighing him by a mere 2 lbs at the time, I would drag him on walks



and use every muscle I had to roll him off of the couch in the mornings.

"Don't look at me!!!"

“Don’t look at me!!!”

Despite those issues, his lack of energy was a welcome break from Peterbilt, who was at the time, much like caring for a toddler who drank a 6-pack of Mountain Dew. While Pete couldn’t let 5 minutes go by without my 100% attention being lavished upon him, I could lay out in the sun in the backyard without so much as a whine from Mack, who’d usually find a nearby spot in the shade. Hubs and I could watch a movie from start to finish without interruption with Mack. Weekends at the cabin would consist of us lounging around, Mack napping nearby.

We worked on Mack’s weight over the years and he gradually got down to a slim 73 lbs. Which sounds great and all but the problem is that now he has all of this energy.

The jury is still out on which reason is the main cause. Either is the lost weight has put less pressure on his joints, causing him less pain or he’s perpetually hungry which fuels his motivation to follow me around 24/7. It could be a combination of both. The cause is really pointless and he’s turned into a TOTAL PAIN IN THE ASS.

This weekend, we made the 3 hour trek north to our cabin in Longville, Minnesota. We drove up Saturday during the day and made a few stops along the way. We arrived around dinner time, so we took Mack’s instant hysteria as hunger-induced and fed him. Nothing unusual there.

8 PM came and Justin and I were doing our usual lounge, feet slung over the sides of arm chairs and recliners, hopelessly addicted to our smart phones and iPads. Mack, on the other hand, was ready for bed! He started to whine, his ears hanging low in tired desperation. Looking directly at me and ignoring Justin’s commands to shut up, he pleaded with me to shut off all of the lights and go into the bedroom with him. At 8PM.

He’s pulled this stunt before with us during late nights and on New Year’s Eve, because this dog does not do well going to sleep late. But we just finished dinner and were enjoying a glass or 5 of wine. Our cabin is NOT an old folks home. We do not have dinner at 4:30, we do not sit around and watch Wheel of Fortune and we definitely, do not go to bed at 8 PM!!!!

We ignored him, went back to lounging and Mack eventually conceded and shuffled off to bed.

Then my cousin called me and we chatted on the phone. Mack shuffled out of the bedroom to once again, to park his ass directly in front of me and give me the biggest stink eye, ever. Ears low, head low, just leering. Hubs, who never interrupts me on the phone, even had to say, “Will, you look at him?!?!”. Mack was pissed. “Get your asses to bed!!!!”, said Daddy Mack. (Or is is Mack Daddy?)

I finished my conversation and gave in to Mack’s demands. Bedtime at 9:30? Sure, why not. “You win, Mack.” Mack, who you would have thought would have been delighted, was still ornery.

I could not have slept any harder. I love sleeping at our cabin. It was the best sleep ever…….

……until 5:30 when Mack decided it was time for breakfast.

That’s when the whining started. Then I felt him sniffing my face, hoping to see my open eyes. Then he tried Hubs. He shuffled off into the front room, then back into our bedroom again. Then he whined some more. Hubs, being the good hubs he is, took one for the team and fed and pottied Mack. Hubs plopped back into bed, which I felt because we were sleeping on one of those god awful Sleep Number beds. When your partner plops, you’re practically ejected off of the bed. We both felt the noise was over and drifted off back to sleep.

Then 7:30 came. Mack started to whine again. I yelled at him to knock if off already.

8:00 – Whining started again. Then silence. Drifting off again..

8:25 – Whining again. This time I took one for the team and got out of bed. Mack, elated at my rise, danced around and ran into the front room. He stood there. I walked over the front door to see if he had to go out, nothing. I walked over to the food dish – still nothing. What did this dog want? His nub was wagging frantically. I finally said ‘fuck it’ and gave him another scoop of food and went back to bed.

8:45 – Whining. Christ Almighty.

9:00 – Whining. Oh Lordy……..

9:15 – Whining turned barking. Fine, I’m getting up.

I started a pot of coffee and Mack grabbed his favorite purple ball and ran towards me playfully. Oh duh. This dog had been trying to get us up for the last 4 hours to play. A 12, almost 13 year old dog, acting like a puppy.  I would have been more happy if I wasn’t more tired.

Of course, an hour later over breakfast, Mack fell asleep. He even gave us lip for talking to loud while he was trying to sleep. Mack tells you when to sleep, when to get up and when to shut the fuck up. What a drill sergeant.

So, it appears our days of relaxing without having to be a dog parent have come to a bittersweet end. I’m happy that Mackie is so healthy, so late in his life but damn dog…..can you maybe put back on a couple pounds and give me a break?

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