Friday, January 2, 2009

Tales of a Sausage

So, I wasn't really planning on blogging today but I've been specifically told that 'it would be nice' so I did. It's nice to have loyal readers.

As always, I don't have any idea of what I'm going to say. I'm actually at my parents today. Having a four-day weekend, it seemed like a good idea. Currently, I have a loyal dog at my feet. Well, actually, he's not really that loyal unless I happen to have treats on hand. He's currently staring up at me, whining. In the interest of anonymity, I shall call him "Sausage".

Oh, who am I kidding, his name really is Sausage. He's a dachshund. We call dachshund 'sausage dogs' in the UK so the name stuck. He's the most exasperating dog in the universe, fickle in his love, lazy in his nature and not the brightest bulb in the box.

Of course, I love him dearly. He loves me too. He loves me most when I have what we call "meaties" which translate as leftovers from the fridge. Then, Sausage will stare at me with those liquid brown eyes, whimper with just enough sadness that I melt and I give in. I hate it. I'm being manipulated by a creature who sleeps eighteen hours a day and who would give me up for a slice of bacon.

And yet, I still adore him. He really is the laziest dog in history. He likes to wrap up in one of my dad's old sweaters and hibernate in the winter. Occasionally, he'll get stuck in the sweater. Sometimes, he manages to actually wiggle into one of the arms of the sweater and get stuck. Picture Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Pot...that's Sausage when he's caught in a sweater arm. During these situations, Sausage panics. He doesn't calmly wait to be rescued. He flails and cries and doesn't understand what has happened. We've had to cut him out before because he's a bit too big to be pulled gently out of the sweater's arm. After he has been rescued, he stares at you with baleful eyes that are almost accusing, like it was OUR fault he got stuck.

Have I mentioned that he's not the brightest dog in the universe? He's terribly sweet though. When he wants to be, that is. We used to have this tradition I called "The Snow Dance." Even before I moved to California, I loved snow and liked nothing better than a thick covering on the ground that would allow for snowman-building and the subsequent hot-chocolate drinking. So every winter, I would have Sausage sit up on his hindquarters, grab his front paws and shout "Snow, Sausage! Snow!".

And every winter, within a week of The Snow Dance, it would snow. My mother hated it. She actually forbid me to do the dance, convinced that it actually worked. I'd still sneak it in, anyhow. Especially when I was home for the holidays from California and missing the snow a lot.

Sausage actually did get smart enough to realize he should hide when I said the "S" word. You see, he hates snow. He despises it almost as much as my mother. He burrows under his sweater for days when it snows emerging long enough to eat. He'll also go outside to do his business. It takes him two minutes and then he's back, diving under the sweater for warmth.

I used to make up stories about Sausage. Well, ok, so I still do. I tell him he used to be King of the Village in his former life. Being a dachshund, naturally, I assume he used to live in Germany because it seems to fit. Sometimes I call him "Der Wurste Hund". I know that's probably bad German but it roughly translates to..."The Sausage Dog". Hey, I'm original, what can I say?

In my stories, as King of the Village, Sausage used to be the former fearsome ruler of Ravensburg in Germany, an idyllic little village where the residents celebrate Christmas year-round, where there is always snow that doesn't melt, even when it's warm, where everyone loves one another. Ravensburg is perfect, you see.* There are hot chocolate vendors downtown, candied houses like in Hansel and Gretel and, in the very middle of the village, there is a giant Christmas Tree where the villagers gather nightly, in a circle, hands clasped, to dance around the tree to celebrate the perfectness of their village.

Sausage, naturally, watches the dancing from his Sausage Throne, being fed meaties by the villagers who adore him. When he's hungry, he goes hunting, burrowing down holes and retrieving whatever pests bother him. He's particularly fond of chihuahuas. This is mostly because Sausage wishes in his real life that he was an only-dog. Instead, he is one of five little dogs- two chihuahuas and two Yorkshire Terriers.

Sausage hates the chihuahuas. Normally, he's a placid dog but he has awfully big teeth and when the chihuahuas yap and bother him, Sausage the Mighty King comes out and gets angry. He's a bit scary when he's angry, actually. He just doesn't like being provoked.

So, I tell Sausage stories of Ravensburg and he stares up at me with those big eyes, almost as if he understands me. I think he also enjoys the fact that I'm rubbing his nose or petting his tummy but he looks like he understands.

Around my nephews and nieces, Sausage is actually rather gentle. He's been forced to play Red Riding Hood by my oldest niece and was very good natured about it at the time although now, whenever she comes over, he dives under the table to avoid contact. He might not always be the brightest but he's not completely stupid.

He's with me now as I type this, his whining is increasing. He's convinced that nothing I do is nearly important as what I should be doing which is, naturally, paying attention to him. It's hard to resist. He has sad eyes and he knows how to use them. I know I'm being manipulated and yet...I can't resist.

The whining is getting louder which means I'm going to have to wrap this up for some one-on-one time with The Sausage. As the first blog of 2009, I didn't intend to spend the time talking about my dog but, well, he's adorable.

Just as long as you're not a chihuahua.

*Note: The perfect qualities of Ravensburg are not entirely fictional but are a result of being forced to spend a large amount of time with slightly insufferable German relatives one Sunday afternoon who could talk of nothing but how perfect their town of Ravensburg was. So, yes, this is slightly sarcastic. But then again, would you expect anything else?

1 comment:

Sarah said...

Your snow dance got me stuck in Cleveland a few Christmases ago for over 24 hours - I guess I can blame poor Sausage for that?