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A Rocki Day

Tuesday, August 6th, 2002 · No Comments

Happy Jamaican Independence Day. I need to keep thinking of the enviably chill state of Jamaicans on this day of the countryís 40th anniversary of freedom from British rule.

Urine on the living room floor. Dog fight in the hallway. Big ornithophobic Russian man in the kitchen. Shriveled carcass of fish creature on the perimeter path.

Yesterday was certainly a day for the record books. It all started with an innocent enough idea: A coworker was trying to find a new home for the adorable Rocki, so I cancelled my haircut appointment, loaded him in my car, and headed home for a compatibility test run. Jen and I introduced Stella and Rocki on neutral territory, the Field of Dog Dreams (FODD). After establishing her dominance, Stella seemed OK hanging out with the new guy. The two brown beasts frolicked around the FODD for a while, then we returned home.

Of course, when Rocki came into Stellaís house, it was time for Stella to make it clear all over again who the alpha dog was. So she did. Then they played. At least for a bit. In a strange sort of way. Stella tried so hard, but Rocki just didnít seem interested. Heís probably older than her and doesnít understand her crazy, energetic ways.

Then the pitter-patting began. Jen and I realized that there was some kind of creature stuck in the hood above our stove. So we called the Treasure Island after-hours maintenance line and stopped preheating the oven for the Chik Nuggets we were getting ready to eat. Then the noises stopped. So we told maintenance not to come. We resumed preheating the oven and threw the Chik Nuggets inside. Tap-tap-tap. Pitter-pat. We put it together: Having the oven on was cooking more than one Chik Nugget. So I called maintenance again.

The big Russian man arrived. He went into the kitchen, pulled open the hood, and a small bird darted past us and into the window. I managed to open the window and shove it outside, but not without screams from the muscular man: “Get it out! I scared of the bird! Get it out!” When things calmed down a bit and the bird was gone, the man repulsively said, “You cooked the bird! It smells like cooked bird! You must clean this grate! Put it in dishwasher.” I never told him what was in the oven.

Meanwhile, Stella continued in her attempts to get Rocki to play with her. When he finally got fed up with her, he jaunted into the living room, lifted a leg, and watered our carpet. Rocki failed that part of the interview.

Several tiffs later, Jen and I took the two beasts for a walk on the path, where Rocki came across a fish creature carcass like those often dropped by seagulls this time of year (feeding time for the newly born). Of course, Stella quickly took it away from him and strutted her stuff proudly down the path before we were able to make her drop it.

Back at work, Rocki has been returned to his foster dad, my move to a new cube is complete, and Iím still trying to relax.

New York Cityís plans for the one-year memorial of September 11 were released today. Iíve been wondering for awhile how the day would be commemorated. Iíve wondered if it would become a national holiday. But then I realized that December 7 is not a national holiday. September 11 is, quite simply, another day that will live in infamy.

Tags: dogs