So we got this new dog and his name is Jake. And he’s a dog. And he barks.
Jake barks at the doorbell. Except, we don’t actually have a doorbell. Poor Jake! How can he bark at the doorbell if we don’t have one?
I’m so glad you asked me that question.
Jake barks at the doorbell that rings on TV.
Guess how many doorbells ring on TV?
LOTS of doorbells ring on TV. And sometimes, when you’re up late watching a little TV by yourself because you can’t sleep or The Lovely Rhonda has gone to bed at 9:30 because she is in the ICU tomorrow or whatever — sometimes, the doorbell on TV rings really late at night.
And of course if Jake is going to bark, BY GOD I MUST BARK AS WELL says Otto. So there you are just watching some crappy rerun of The Nanny or something in the quiet of the night and suddenly there is a cacophony of dog barking. And you have to shush everybody before TLR comes out of Grone Up Land (as one of the kids spelled it) and murders us all with just a look. That look. That one look of flaming instant death.
It wouldn’t help to remind her that these dogs? These noisy, hairy, smelly, flatulent dogs? That bark at the TV and poop in the yard and chew things up? These dogs were HER OWN DOING.
No, no. That wouldn’t help. Don’t do that.
Let’s move on to cats.
We have three cats.
They poop and pee discreetly in the bushes.
They have never barked, in my experience. Even if a doorbell goes off on a TV show late at night, there is no barking from the cats.
Cat farts are seldom and, again, discreet. They are rarely audible and only occasionally can you even sense that one has occurred. (Granted, if you do sense it, it’s too late and you are doomed.)
I have yet to meet the cat who will, left unattended, chew the right shoe off of a La La Loopsy doll left on the couch by one of the children.
Last night I was obligated to feed the dogs because TLR had worked all day whine whine whine and had to get up early tomorrow whine whine whine. Ugh, fine I’ll do it if you stop whining. So I went to head outside where the dry dog food is kept in a big plastic bin on the back porch. Except I had picked up the big dog dish and Jake was so excited about FOOD OMG DINNER that he jumped up at my hand and knocked the dog dish out of it and it fell on my toe with a big metal CLANG.
And it hurt! It hurt in that way that you have to hold really still and Not. Say. Anything. for a minute or else you’ll blister the paint off the walls with your colorful invectives.
And then I had to open the can of wet food to smush into the dry food, because I am now a short order cook for dogs, and the smell about knocked me over. The worst part about this is that the can has to be cleaned out with a dish brush so you can recycle it, because the dog food sticks to the inside of the can like paste. GROSS.
And then I fed them and had to sit in a cloud of dog food smell, dog-breath-after-eating-dog-food smell, and, after a deceptively short time, the smell that dog food makes when it has navigated its way through most of the dog. TLR had already gone to bed so it was just me and the dogs and the smells.
And the doorbell on TV.