I was walking down by the river one day when I came upon a dog sniffing a rock. On the mortal side, rocks are crucial to dogs. We pee on rocks to leave messages to one another. We don’t have to pee now, but it is still a useful messaging service. I took a few sniffs and started to walk away. The other dog was slowly sniffing.
“Is there anything interesting there?” I asked.
“There always is. I have been coming to this rock for 150 years. I find something new every day.”
“One-hundred-and-fifty years!” I exclaimed. “Shouldn’t you be in the land of Happily Ever After with your parents?”
“My dad likes it here. People always want to meet him. He gives speeches. He is kind of a big deal.”
“Who is your dad?”
“Alexander Graham Bell.”
“He’s the guy who invented the telephone!” I said impressed.
The dog scoffed. “Oh yeah, he invented the telephone.”
The dog looked at me slyly. He stuck out his paw and told me his name was Trouve. Then he told me his story.
“My dad has always boasted that he taught me how to talk. No one really believed him. He was very smart but a bit eccentric. The truth was I could talk. We all can. We just choose not to. Who wants to use words when a good bark suffices?
“He was fascinated with how we communicate by rock. He thought humans could message one another in a similar way, quickly, without a lot of writing. One day I found him peeing on a rock. ‘What are you doing?’ I asked. That was the first time I had spoken to him. He was shocked. ‘I am trying to leave a message for my friends,’ he said.
“I shook my head and told him to come inside the house. We sat down on the couch. I plopped myself on his lap and told him what he needed was to make a telegraph line that could transmit human voices. He was transfixed with my idea. He wanted me to get off his lap so he could take notes but I wasn’t doing that because I’m a dog and we never move so a human can do work. I might have explained to him how to invent to the telephone, but I do have my limits.
“Shortly after that, he invented the telephone. The story is that he said over the line for his assistant Watson to come to him. There was no Watson. He was calling me. I had peed on the rug again. It wasn’t my fault. I was getting older, and Mr. Super Genius Inventor never had time to take me to the vet. So, anyway, that is how I invented the telephone.”
It was quite the tail. I congratulated him on his accomplishment. “Please don’t. I feel bad. People paid less attention to their dogs once that thing was invented.”
He continued to sniff. “You certainly are fascinated with that rock,” I said
“I have always thought, what if we could pee on a telegraph line, then we wouldn’t have to spend so much time sniffing rocks.”
I gave Trouve a pat on the head. Once a dog inventor, always a dog inventor.