Wednesday, April 29, 2015
Tuesday, April 28, 2015
I have been remiss not to write a review of Bioterrorism Seized The Sea: A Hobo Hudson Adventure available from Amazon at this link.
Ghost written by our enterprising friend Hobo Hudson who used his Mom’s name as the author to hide his income from pesky IRS auditors. For anyone who is a fan of Clive Cussler’s Dirk Pitt series, or a fan of adventure in any form, this book is quite the read.
But before I delve into the review proper I have to disclose that my angel sister Foley Monster and I are mentioned in the book and there is also a scullious rumor written by Hobo himself that I had a crush on him which is not true. That is the only part of the book that is fictional. The rest, I truly believe, took place.
When I told Foley during one of her dream lectures (I meant visits) that I would be writing this review she told me to make sure I emphasized that without her the entire adventure could not have been written, and the outcome quite different.
The book open with Hobo at camp while his parents are on a cruise. He hears on the news that there is a bio-terrorist attack on a cruise ship and determines his parent’s lives are in danger. Hobo, mostly known as a dog investor and business owner, proves himself to be an action hero as he devises a plan to get on the boat and save his family. To do so he must rely on technology discovered by my sister Foley Monster: The ability to download one’s self from place to place using the Internet.
Hobo and Ludwig, an unwitting camp guest who finds himself Hobo’s accomplice end up in the series of tubes that is in Internet at first searching for Foley’s map of the Internet and then, unable to find Foley’s map, which I haven’t been able to locate either, are left to their own devices to find the ship. After a series of errors the combination of Hobo’s guile and Ludwig’s innocent observations they find their way to the ship and encounter the terrorists.
How do two dogs intervene to stop a terrorist attack on a ship where both the terrorists and the people Hobo and Ludwig are determined to save want nothing more than to put a rope around their necks and either hang them or tie them in a room? Well to find out you are going to have to keep turning the pages of this easy and enjoyable read.
Not only is this a fine adventure story but it is filled with many of Hobo’s spot on comments about the relationship between dogs and man. He leaves no doubt that dogs are the superior species. And without dogs, and our understanding of the Internet, the terrorists win. So hats off to Hobo Hudson. The richest dog in town, the bravest dogs in town, and the most entertaining dog in town.
Do yourself favor and pick up a copy of Bioterrosim Seized the Sea. You won’t put it down.
Sunday, April 26, 2015
When I was on the mortal side of the Bridge I lived a blessed life. Until the last week of my mortal life I rarely visited the vet except for yearly checkups. I did have one problem: My knee would pop out of place. The first time it happened I screamed bloody murder and my parents rushed me to the vet. During the car ride the knee popped back into place. By the time I got to the vet’s my knee was fine. The vet was still kind enough to charge my parents $200.00. We are truly slaves to our own legs.
Walking on all fours is a much easier way to move than the bipeds insistence on walking on two legs. But when something happens to one of them we either need to adapt like our friend Scooby or we need to go to the vet’s, find out what is wrong, and possibly have a very expensive operation.
We have three friends whose legs betrayed them this week: Shiloh, Jazzy and Jakie. These are their stories.
Shiloh was having an innocent day of fun with her Daddy and his Mom. In fact it was so much fun she began doing zooms in the yard. Suddenly she cried out and could not put any weight on her back right leg. Her parents took her for xrays and they found a torn ligament. She was scheduled for surgery two days later. The good news was that Shiloh knew and trusted the vet who had already operated on Shiloh’s elbow when she was one and a half. Her Mom calls Shiloh the million dollar pup. It must be because Shiloh is so special. Her Mom is a manager at Petco and with all the money our parents spend there she must be super rich so she couldn’t be concerned about money.
A couple of days later Shiloh was at her trusted vets. It was very difficult on her parents to leave her alone but Shiloh has many angel friends and we flew down to keep her company and stayed with her while the skilled surgeon fixed Shiloh’s ligament. After she awoke and spread Shiloh sweetness throughout the vet’s office her parents were called to return her home. She was brought a new stuffed football toy to use as a pillow and headed home. And now Shiloh is home, healing and should be as good as new soon.
Another good girl, Jazzy, had something happen to her ambulatory system this week and began to scream in pain. She was rushed to the vet and he determined that Jazzy had an injured hip and put her on strict rest. The next day Jazzy was in more pain and wasn’t eating. The new vet discovered that the hip was fine but Jazzy had a soft tissue injury. She was put on new medication and put on bed rest again. Hopefully she is on the road to recovery.
Finally there is Jakie who hurt his leg chasing after a rabbit. His mother thinks that Jake did what I used to do and popped his knee out of place. She is trying to do what my parents didn’t do and treat it without going to the vet and getting a big and unnecessary bill. So best of luck to you Jake and heal fast.
So we have three friends who need prayers for better wheels and not the kind that you get at Enzo’s garage. Please pray that their wheels are fixed quickly and that they may run for a long time.
Friday, April 24, 2015
Dear Aunt Foley: Why is is still snowing? We can understand it snowing on Enzo’s mountain but why is it snowing here in Indiana? Is it ever going to stop? Your cold friends Boris and Minne.
Dear Boris and Minnie: I am very sorry for your problems and sorrier to report to you that there isn’t much I can do about it. Usually I take these issues to the Big Guy and he always has an open ear for me. Weather problems are the purview of Mother Nature and nobody likes to deal with Mother Nature. But for my good friends Boris and Max, accompanied by their siblings Tupper and Max we went down the valley so see Mother Nature and ask that she make it stop snowing. She whirled on us almost knocking all three of us on our tails.
“You are complaining about my weather?” she asked. “Who are you to complain about the weather? The wind, the snow, the rain, the cold, the heat, the sleet, they are all my children and they never ever call. You think just once they could pick up the phone and say: “Hi Mom, how are you?” But no they are all out running around, living their own lives, no time for Mom. You know where heat is now? Heat is at Disney! You think I got a postcard? No, I got a text.
A text! Who texts their parents? Cold, I have no idea what he is doing at all. I have glaciers melting in the Arctic, sea levels rising, and they are making it snow in the rust belt. I call them, and I know they see it’s me on their caller ID, but do they want to talk to Mom? No. And do they listen when I tell them all this screwing around with the temperature is runing my designs? No, they don’t care. I have stretch marks larger than the Grand Canyon from those kids and do they care? No. So leave me alone. I’ve got my own problems. And go call your mothers!”
So my friends all I can tell you is to stock up on the jackets and booties. It might be a long winter.
Thursday, April 23, 2015
Our cousin Neely is here for a week while his family is at Disney World. I am not happy about Nelly being here. He takes away my attention time.
He’s not a bad chap. He’s gone through some tough changes lately. One Dad left, another man moved in, with three boys and another dog, and, with all those new humans and a dog, Nelly got pushed down the ladder a bit and that makes him sad. He still has a very good life but attention wise he has been lacking. If there is one thing my parents have it is plenty of attention for dogs. But again, I am down a slight bit in that department.
When he first got here, even though he has been here before, he was timid. I liked that. He mostly laid on the floor because he is no longer allowed on the furniture in his house. I think that’s a good rule: For Neely. But my parents aren’t real good at following the rules.
Soon he was sitting with Daddy in the recliner, getting whatever he wanted using those huge, dark, adoring eyes. I hate when dogs use their eyes to manipulate humans. He hasn’t got in the recliner with Mommy: Yet. He has tried but Mommy has reserved that, and the bed, as my spot with Pocket. Although Nelly has tried a flanking assault by jumping over the side of the recliner on to her lap causing the great skedaddle.
River sleeps in the spare bedroom in his crate. He goes right in and doesn’t complain. Sometimes I feel guilty sleeping in the big bed while he sleeps alone in his crate. There must be a homeless guy we can take in then put in the spare bed and let him sleep with Neely.
Neely is playing with my toys, and I have been generous in letting him, since his Mom did not bring any toys for him. And he is eating our treats too, for the same reason. He also chases Pocket’s ball, which Pocket does not like. Even when you throw a different ball he chase Pocket’s.
And today he really broke the rules. He jumped on the couch and peed. Mommy was more than angry. And boy did Neely get attention. But not the kind he wanted. We thought he was going back home right there but Mommy forgave him.
So he is still here, through Sunday at least. I think he is enjoying himself. Maybe more than at his home. If he gives us a good Yelp review maybe we will open up a spot for dogs who need a vacation.
Just bring your own toys, treats, bed and human to sleep with if you so need.
Wednesday, April 22, 2015
Sunday, April 19, 2015
Pocket and I used to fight. We would get up on our back legs, snarl at one another and snap with our mighty jaws. Fortunately neither of us had the jaw strength to hurt one another. But not all dogs are as weak jawed as we are.
With Pocket and I, as it is with River and Pocket, fights occurred when we thought our food, or our position on Mommy’s lap, was threatened.
It is often hard to understand what triggers a dog fight. Our parents don’t know, and most times we don’t know either. We catch the scent of tension in the air. A quick look is exchanged and it is go time.
Sometimes dogs fight for a bit and then lose interest. Sometimes humans break up the fight. And sometimes they can’t.
This week two of our best friends, and two close pack members, Josie and Emme, got into a fight. Their Mom and Dad aren’t sure what happened. One moment the two of them were fine with one another, the next they were really at each other’s throats.
Emme is the younger of the two and the more aggressive. Josie the older. There are seven pack members that Josie has to manage. But Emme, well, Emme doesn’t like being managed.
In the animal world, and the human world too, the young replace the old, one day you are the leader, the next an upstart takes you down. That is the natural order of things. In the wild Emme would now be pack leader. But we have become domesticated, and we have Moms, and we are their babies.
Thankfully Moms know there is nothing right nor fair about the natural order of things. And in their homes if anyone is going to determine the natural order it is Moms. Along with their Dad, their Mom ran into the yard and somehow got the younger, stronger Emme off of Josie. But the damage had been done. Josie had severe injuries to her face and her legs. While the wounds were not life threatening they would have to be tended to, and surgery would be needed.
The surgeon told Josie’s Mom that they would have to wait until morning to operate and her parents had to return home with a missing heartbeat. And Emme greeted them with a wagging tail and bright eyes leaving their parents to wonder how they could continue to love something that almost destroyed something they loved, but they could not help but love Emme.
Thankfully, the next day, Josie had her surgery and returned home where she is healing. And us dogs don’t hold grudges so everything is fine at Josie’s family farm. Us angels have flown down and talked to all parties involved who have sworn there will be no more fighting.
But some day there might be a look, might be a misunderstanding, and the jaws of vengeance unleashed
Please pray for peace at the Farm between Josie and her siblings.
Her Mom deserves it, as do all the pups
Friday, April 17, 2015
I am going to change the format this week. Instead of a question I am going to provide an update on our plans to remove the stairs at the Bridge with a modern conveyance.
I posted a poll for several angels and pups . The result was that almost unanimous: An escalator with a rest stop for refreshments, pampering, and sprucing up, was chosen to replace the old, crumbling stairs. Enzo has all the parts and will be building it in his garage. When the results became official I immediately regretted posting the question.
As Judge of Rainbow Bridge District 7 one of my duties is to swear in the angels that cross the River of Life to immortality. It usually take a dog five minutes to climb the steps. When I proposed a modern conveyance to the Big Guy I had not anticipated the rest stop request.
The problem is I am a very busy dog. I don’t mind waiting in my robes while a recently passed dog climbs the stairs but the thought of me standing there impatiently while the same dog gets his or her hair curled, washed, and feasts on delectable treats burns me up. I don’t mean to be insensitive but I could spend eternity (and that’s a mighty long time) waiting at the top of an escalator while the forbidden taste of bon bons are introduced to a dog’s pallet.
So now I must ask for another addition to the plan. First, directly to Enzo: Do you have an old horn lying around that garage? If so, could you install in at the rest stop, so when the soon to be angel is done being pampered they could blow the horn to signal me to meet them at the top of the stairs so I don’t spend a freaking eternity waiting for the pampered pup to finish their first delectable box of chocolates? And could the escalator committee agree to modify the designs to include the horn?
Also Tommy Tunes had a wonderful idea For those who would like a quicker, and more exciting ride to the top, Tommy proposed a reverse water slide: Pups would sit on an innertub and an engine would pump water up the mountain to the top. This would be great for water lovers.
Any chance of a reverse water pump Enzo?
Wednesday, April 15, 2015
Tuesday, April 14, 2015
I found out what was living under my house, and subsequently found out why our heat was sporadically working,and of course it was all Foley’s doing.
Our heat stopped working one day, and while the calendar says spring, it is still quite cold. River and I were shivering in the bedroom when we heard paw falls, and smelled something quite odiforous. We ran to the vent and yelled out “who dares enter the home beneath two scary dogs of such statute.” (I was exaggerating but I believe River was quite serious.)
“It is I, Puxatony Phil!” a voice called out from beneath the floorboards.
“Puxatony Phil!” I said shocked. “What are you doing here?”
“I needed a break from the constant tourism,” he said. “People pestering me, looking up my hole. Foley stopped by and told me you had some heat issues. I agreed to live under your house, get away from all the curiosity seekers, and get back into shape by running on the wheel that makes your heat work. Next year when they pull me out of the hole I don’t want them talking about six more weeks of winter. I want them talking about how wonderful I look in spanx.”
I thought it was rather late in the year to lose weight by keeping our heat going but Phil assured me that the cold air would continue, and who was I to argue, he is Punxsutawney Phil. In fact he told me that six is the highest amount of upcoming weeks of winter he can predict, but given his druthers, he would have picked 12.
The next week was cold, and when I peered down the grate I saw Phil running as hard as he could to keep the heat working. On Friday night there was a big bang under the house. It was dark and I could not be sure, but I thought I saw Phil slinking away in the night, abandoning his quest to slim down and leaving us huddled around one small space heater for warmth until a new heating unit can be installed.
If any of our human friends are driving between southeastern Massachusetts and western Pennsylvania and see a plump rodent waddling down the road you have our permission to run the fast bastard over.
Sunday, April 12, 2015
Pocket and I began this blog in May 2008 after getting thrown off a website that doesn’t even exist anymore. Since then we’ve written about 1,000 of these things. In November of 2009 we began writing our Pup of the Week tribute blogs. Two months later we named Morgan the Miracle Maltese Pup of the Week after he went to the Bridge. It is six years later and I was shocked to find that, despite years of doing great work, we have not honored Morgan’s wonderful Mom. We are here to rectify that.
Morgan (and now Jackson and Ginger's) Mom is our Aunt Jane Marinello and she has been helping homeless dogs find good homes for all these years. But what she did recently truly deserves to be celebrated across the globe.
Aunt Jane has a neighbor named Thelma who turned 100 on April 10th. A couple of weeks before her birthday Aunt Jane took Amanda some gardenias just to make Amanda’s day a little brighter. Amanda has a 14 year old Maltese named Muffin. Up until last year Amanda had a traveling groomer come to her house and provide Muffin with a spa day. But the groomer had relocated and Amanda could no longer drive, or groom Muffin. Poor Muffin’s hair had matted so badly he could not see.
Aunt Jane explained to Thelma that the mats were hurting Muffin. Aunt Jane called her groomer and told she had an emergency case. The groomer, whose shop was scheduled to be closed the next day, agreed to open the shop especially for Muffin. Aunt Jane knew that Thelma loved Muffin, and Muffin loved her Mom, but Thelma’s eyes were bad and she could no see how bad Muffin’s hair had become. Aunt Jane, without looking for any credit, unassumingly decided to be Muffin and Thelma’s hero.
Aunt Jane took Muffin to the groomer’s and thankfully the groomer was able to shave Muffin without having to give him anesthesia. Here is Muffin getting groomed.
A few days later Aunt Jane went to see Muffin and brought him a shirt (that had belonged to Morgan) until his hair started to grow in. (Aunt Jane cannot stop giving.) Aunt Jane got thanked for the shirt and the grooming with lots of Muffin kisses.
The groomer did find a large mass on Muffin’s chest but it was not bothering him and being 14 it was decided to leave well enough alone. Also, like many older dogs, he has leg issues, but Muffin can still get outside to do his business. Aunt Jane decided that she had not done enough for Thelma and Muffin and she asked her hundreds of Facebook friends to send birthday cards to Thelma to make her birthday special.
As Thelma’s birthday drew near the birthday cards started streaming in making this one of the happiest birthdays she has experienced in ages. Aunt Jane visits her everyday and she reports that Muffin is getting his strength back.
Thelma and Muffin are even walking for a few steps each day, all because Aunt Jane, as she has done with hundreds of dogs, saved them, and for that I call on all dogs to give a tip of the tail to this wonderful woman.
And help yourself to one of these cupcakes Aunt Jane ordered for Thelma and Muffin because she can’t stop doing her countless good deeds.
Friday, April 10, 2015
Dear Aunt Foley: I was enjoying Hobo Hudsons’ new book Bioterroisim Seized the Sea (here is a link if you have not read it.) Hobo was telling the tale of his trying to get to you to obtain your Marauders’ Map of the Internet when he made a comment that he believes I have a crush on him. I became very concerned. While I admire Hobo and look up to him as a wonderful big brother I do not have a crush on him. He is a married man for Bridge’s sake! I contacted his wife Lily who told me she did not believe I had a crush but this comment made me very worried, I do not want to be thought of as a dog house wrecker. As you know I have a nervous stomach and have been spraying out my poos ever since I read this. Can I sue Hobo for pain and suffering and slander? Pocket Dog.
Dear Pocket: As you know Hobo is always one step ahead of all other dogs. He had his Mom list herself as the author who chronicled his adventures thwarting bioterrorism on the high seas. He anticipated that someone would decide to sue and insured they would sue his Mom so his interests would be protected. You cannot sue because of your upset tummy. Everything (the sudden fluttering of a bird’s wing, the phone ringing, rain) brings on digestion issues. Also, having slept next to you for six years I can state that you do not have a case because you often mumbled “Hobo” in your sleep.
Dear Aunt Foley: You know that is not true. I wear a mouthguard at night because I grind my teeth. How could I mumble Hobo’s name with a mouth guard between my teeth.
Dear Pocket: Excuse me Pocket but this is how it works. You ask Aunt Foley a question, she answers it, and you accept the answer. You don’t write back! Also that wasn’t a mouth guard, that was a squeaker you pulled out of a toy.
Dear Aunt Foley: I lived my entire life with you twisting things around to make you look good and I am not going to have both you and River doing it.
Dear Pocket: I never did that you are lying.
Dear Aunt Foley: I am not lying: Mom!
Dear Pocket: Mom!
Wednesday, April 8, 2015
Sunday, April 5, 2015
After Angel Aran settled in at Rainbow Bridge she immediately began looking for the perfect dog who could help heal her Mom’s broken heart. She stayed up for days going through application after application until she found the dog: Her name was Chloe.
Once she had found Chloe she popped into her dreams. She was a rescue dog and she was desperate for a home but Aran wanted to make sure that Chloe had the same qualities: Kindness, sweetness, faithfulness, and a sweet joy, that Aran had brought to her family. Luckily Chloe met all the requirements.
The next day while Aran’s parents were on the computer searching for the perfect pup I helped Aran guide control of their computer to get Chloe’s picture to pop up on the screen. When they saw Chloe’s they instantly fell in love. But her parents still had to fill out an application and wait to see if they were approved.
Aran entered the dreams of the people at the Rescue and he assured them that Chloe could not possibly find a better home than with her parents. The next morning the Rescue workers had a strong, inexplicable feeling that Chloe would fit in perfectly with Aran’s parents.
There were still several steps to get Chloe to her new home. Chloe’s wonderful foster Mom had to take her for tests to make sure she was healthy. Only Chloe could see Aran in the vet’s office, her wings furiously fluttering as she flew back and forth making sure that Chloe got a good report.
Then it was time for the transport. Aran sat on the dashboard, again invisible to everyone but Chloe, as they drove through the night. They arrived at Aran and Chloe’s house so late at night it was morning. But their Mom was up and she rushed out to see Chloe and, as Arans Mom took Chloe into her arms for the first time, and Aran knew her obligation to her Mom was done, an angelic tear fell from her eye and on to the dashboard just before she transported herself back to the Bridge.
Aran only had to make one more trip back to her home before Chloe was settled in. Aran’s cat brother Frank got all “Hey, what did you go bring another animal into the house, what the hell, what about me!” that all cats do. Aran assured Frank that Chloe was specially picked to help their Mom, and while Frank was cautious, he loves his Mom, and has accepted Chloe into the house, and much as a cat can.
So welcome Chloe, listen to Aran in your dreams, and love your parents and you will be the greatest gift they ever received.
Friday, April 3, 2015
Dear Aunt Foley: Why are there so many stairs leading from Rainbow Bridge to where we reside. Why can’t there be an elevator or an escalator? Angel Max
Dear Angel Max: I received this question several days ago and responded to it immediately I thought it was a capitol idea. In fact, when I first arrived at the Bridge I was met at the top of the stairs by Max’s Aunt Ladybug. I always assumed the stairs were her idea and was too polite to tell her the climb was exhausting. But, after Max’s, query I asked Ladybug and she said she did not know why the stairs were there either.
We formed a committee including our mortal friend Hobo Hudson and drew up several designs for a luxury elevator to lift newly arrive angels to the top of the Bridge in style with treats and drinks. I designed an elevator that was like Willy Wonka’s and could fly over the Bridge so the newly arriving angels could see everything. (Gene Wilder’s Willy Wonka, not Johnny Depp’s. There is nothing here based on Johnny Depp.)
I flew the ideas up the mountain to the Big Guy. I told him about our concerns and showed him our plans. He glanced at them and then went back to writing in the big book he is always working on.
“What do you think?” I asked.
“The stairs have always been there and they always will be. It is written,” he said as he kept writing.
“Where is it written?” I asked.
“In this book,” he explained. “This is where everything is written and once I write it it is written.”
“But you are continually writing in the book, which means the book can be modified. Surely you can make a modification for a simple elevator.”
He put down his pen. “I record what has happened, hot what will happen. I have given all my creatures free will. My creations can change the book, and then I write it down and it is written. If some of my beings were to build an elevator, and I liked it, I would write it down in this book, and it would be written.”
“So we can build the elevator?”
“As I said, you have free will. You can do what you like.”
“And if you don’t like it?”
“I will hit it with a lightening bolt and destroy it,” he said, then he picked up his quill and began writing again, a sure sign I had been dismissed.
So Max let’s get started on that elevator. And when it is done it will either be written and become part of the book or will be smoted and then we can get marshmallows and toast them then get back to the drawing board.
Thanks for reminding us that we all have the free will to change the book if we are strong enough to stand up and ask “why not?”
For more Ask Aunt Foley click HERE