Harriet, Sweet Harriet
This beautiful creature is our Golden Retreiver Harriet. The photo is courtesy of my cousin Shanna, who is safe in Oxford England studying because she is a smarty-pants. She is also an excellent amateur photographer. It was taken on the dock up at my parents cabin in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. The U.P. is a beautiful place. I did not join the rest of the family on the 4th of July trip this year because although our cabin is beautiful, there is no plumbing, electricity, or telephone. Our cabin contains a wood-burning stove and two screen doors that slam shut VERY LOUDLY.
I decided that rather than spending the entire weekend chasing Maggie around, trying to prevent her from placing her chubby little hands right on the seething hot cast iron stove and burning the hoo-ha out of them, that we would stay in Minneapolis and enjoy a rare quiet weekend at home. There was that, and then there was the fact that I would have been putting her back to bed 19 times a night because of all the noise that would inevitably wake her up about every 5 minutes. I do not know how our parents survived bringing us up there! I do not regret my decision to stay at home, however I do regret missing the fun and the parade which you can read about on my sister's blog: I want a cookie (link to your right - I am currently link-handicapped).
This blog is named after Harriet. At least it was meant to be, but in all my glorious techno-savvyness and finesse, I confused the URL with the name of the blog, so apparently now my blog's title is I'm Ablogging, which was really intended to be the title of my first post (I was a wee bit excited). The URL is Mydogharriet.blogspot.com. I don't know why I named it that except I adore my dog. SO, This is Harriet. She is the sweetest dog in the world, has no concept of personal space as illustrated be her desire to be ON TOP of you or in your lap at all times. When she is excited she sounds like a wookie. She is obsessed with fetching tennis balls, which comes as no surprise because she is, after all, a retreiver. Harriet NEVER fights with other dogs. Actually that's not exactly true. She does occasionally fight with humpers. But I can TOTALLY understand why she would take a shot at someone who had just tried to unceremoniously mount her.
Harriet has a black lab brother who is the BAD BOY of the house. He has been on my shit list for about 2 weeks now (See his letter of apology in a previous post) for being an ASS. Let's just say that Harriet is NOT the one who knocked Maggie off her little toddler bike while lunging furiously for the throat of my parents Shelte Ernie, inciting a snarling blur of a dog fight. A dog fight in which I had to make a snap decision whether to pick my crying daughter up off the ground or place myself in the middle of a whirling mass of bared teeth and slobber in an effort to preserve the life of poor Ernie (Grandma was there to pick Maggie up and I went in for the dog). A dog fight that left my SWEET PRECIOUS DAUGHTER with a black and blue mark on her forehead and a big old bump. OH YEAH. He is lucky to be alive today that damn dog. He needs to go to manners camp. He is no longer allowed near any dog besides Harriet. Damn, damn dog. That is the second fight in ONE WEEK. Damn dog.
So by comparison, Harriet is an angel. Poor Rainier has all the dog issues in our family. He is a sweet dog really, and he is so affectionate, gentle and good with all things HUMAN. Dogs on the other hand, that is a different story. Our black lab Rainier is a bully and a brute around other canines. He is also chock-full of an entire cornucopia of ISSUES like irritable Bowel syndrome and anger management, and obsessive compulsive disorders and paranoia. He once got Jim's sisters' hand so twisted up in his dog collar that he broke several bones in her hand as she tried to restrain him from killing a squirrel. We are so used to blaming him for every pile of poop we come across we usually don't even consider that it came from his fairer doggie sibling. The golden child.
I have wondered if Harriet is not, in fact, the sweet, laid back lovable, do-no-wrong dog we think she is. What if Harriet is REALLY the evil mastermind behind all of these incidents? What if she is the one who sneaks off in the middle of the night to take a giant runny crap all over our oriental rug? What if it's Harriet who sneaks back to her doggie bed in the dark, chuckling in devious anticipation of the verbal whallop she knows her brother will soon be in for? What if it's Harriet who says "Hey Rainier, see that brand new shoe over there? They said you could eat it!" What if it's Harriet who incites these dog riots by planting a little seed of unrest. Perhaps she whispers to Rainier "Pssst... Hey you. You know that dog over there? Ernie, the Shelte? Yeah. He just said your'e IQ is so low, you are mentally retarded. He said your mama was easy and you were a mistake. He said you couldn't win a fight with a bunny rabbit. Don't tell anyone I told you though. Promise?"
I have considered this scenario as I have stared down our misunderstood black dog of the family. Rainier automatically starts skulking guiltily when you look at him funny. He is THAT used to getting in trouble. I glance over at Harriet who looks up and me wagging her tail innocently. There is practically a halo hovering above her golden head. I think of the times when I was 3 or 4 years old and I was interrogated into admitting to breaking things I never broke, because my older sister Julie was a really good liar at the tender age of 5. I on the other hand, was not so clever. It makes a person wonder, at any rate.