Monday, January 29, 2007

Shut up and deal ...

It started with the Milky Bones. It always starts with the Milky Bones. I give her one every time she comes in from doing her "doody" outside. She knows what to expect and walks straight to the container, waiting with less than exemplary patience. She gets her bone. I get to have (relatively) clean carpet.

Then she progressed to being the self-appointed family guardian. There does not need to be a knock at the door, a car door closing nearby or even a face at the window. If a cricket chirps she's on it. If a leaf falls to the ground she's straining at the window to make certain it isn't a terrorist act. If a neighbor 3 doors down burps too loudly she faces their direction and proceeds to ream them out with the most remarkable stream of dog obscenities you've ever heard. Very impressive.

She is able to discern between a plane flying over and a truck on the street. The truck gets barked at. The plane is ignored. She knows a ringing cell phone from a door bell. How? Who told her? She doesn't open an eyelid at the cell phone. God help whoever rang the doorbell. If the dryer contents are off balance and it begins banging the floor like a mad cannibal on a drum at dinnertime it's no big deal. If the mailman closes the mailbox she's ready to rip his leg off, mace him with his own can of mace and hold him down until authorities arrive.

Bailey the Killer Beagle has a mind of her own. It's only the size of a walnut but it works.

And now? Now she is ready to learn to play cards. Poker I suspect. It's the card game closest to her nature. (I would think long and hard before betting against her. She has a killer poker-face.) You think I'm kidding? No. No I am not. She's been practicing her poker-playing-posture (henceforth known as her "PPP.") Who told her to sit like that? She's been watching. Watching I tell you. Observing quietly from the corners of the room. Seeing how we do it. Learning.

I suspect she will be shuffling a deck of cards any day now.