|I love the taste of newsprint in the morning|
Oh, Mr. Micron, you silly yellow dog. Every day is a reminder of why he is our pet . . . and that he’s just not made of assistance dog stuff.
Another roundtable meeting at the office this week and we start with the obligatory autobiographical introductions.
Hi, I’m Donna from Finance. I’ve been with the R&D Pet Care group for just about eighteen years. And here under the table is assistance dog in training, Yaxley. This handsome fella belongs to Canine Companions for Independence [pause while everyone peeks under the table at the yeller feller curled up like a fox and resting quietly].
And this guy? [all eyes move to Micron who’s resting his smiling noggin on the conference table with his tongue lolling out]. This is Micron. He was in training with CCI as well, but he was released from the program and is now my beloved pet.
He didn’t pass? I’m asked. But why?
He, um. Well you see, Micron just didn’t want to do that kind of work, I confess this to all in the conference room, Mike’s kinda lacking a little in the work ethic department. Micron rolls his soft brown eyes over to me and produces a big doggie smile.
Ah, it’s true. After Micron came home from Advanced Training (what we otherwise refer to as three months at CCI summer camp), we’ve been giving him chores to do around the house. Because it’s so annoying to come home to a warm TV and Cheetos dust on the sofa.
I have to tell you though, I am totally blessed to be in a dog friendly office and will bring Micron in whenever I can. Some days, though, it just can’t be helped and the mighty Micron needs to spend the day in the comfort of our humble home.
So, what did you do today while I was at work, Micron? I cleaned the breakfast dishes with Soap & Water!, he says.
Which is, of course, his clever nicknames for Yaxley and Jager – Soap & Water. Ugh, alrighty then. I think I’ll just load the dishwasher and run a sanitizing rinse if that doesn’t offend your canine sensibilities too terribly much.
What to do with this beautiful and intelligent dog to keep him from the distractions of the willingly unemployed? You know what they say – every hour of daytime TV is another brain cell sacrificed to the talk show gods. Right, for one thing, we’ve tasked Micron to retrieve the newspaper every morning. The Husband likes to review the latest world happenings along with his Life cereal. It keeps the Tums folk in business, it does.
And this fluffy dog just loves the taste of newsprint. He walks to the end of the driveway to pick the thing up, and carries it back in his maw along with a proud doggie strut. Lookit me y’all! he says. I gotcher paper!
|That’s right. I am the Master of News Retrieval.|
|So there, Yax!|
And this job works out pretty well. Sure, for the most part anyway. There are the occasional mornings when Micron has determined the paper has developed a self-awareness and needs to be summarily destroyed before it can take action on its evil plans to take over the world.
But fortunately, that’s not every day. Some days I even have enough left to do the crossword.
Another job that Micron has shown an interest in is helping to carry in the groceries. Groceries is rather a broad term and what I really mean is that Micron likes to carry in the paper towels. And that’s it, really. Just the paper towels.
So on grocery days, we’re met at the door of the Toyota by the mighty Micron. Need help? he asks, smacking his lips, so, which bag has the paper towels? And so, like idiots, we hand him a roll.
In a well-intentioned, but disastrous, attempt to demonstrate this feat, here’s a photo recreation of what happens after our weekly grocery trip.
Yeah, so the play bow is not a good sign that he’s taking this recreation seriously. If I had any sense, we would give up any hope at this point for a happy ending. At least for the Bounty. But I continue to optimistically click the shutter.
But things take an even darker turn.
Ok, so I’d really like to say that it doesn’t happen just like this every week, but I’d be lyin’ to you. Because it does. Pretty much just like you see here. The only twist is when he takes the paper towel roll into the house to show Yaxley (Look what I got and you don’t, Yax!I). I don’t have photos of that. And I wouldn’t show you if I did. It’s too embarrassing.
|No dogs were harmed in this photo recreation.
The Bounty roll, however, suffered a bit.
And speaking of embarrasing, don’t tell Micron I showed you these next shots. As we’re going back into the house after my ill fated photo shoot, Mike spies the paper towels on the railing where I had left them. In a fit of impulsiveness (every day is a reminder) he jumps up to grab them, but knocks them off instead.
And here he is trying to get them back.
Ah, hindsight is 20:20, isn’t it? All he had to do was walk around the railing, instead of giving it the old college try pulling the ten inch roll through the four inch space. But hey, maybe he was just trying to show me he does indeed have a work ethic after all. He is trying really, really hard, you see.
That work ethic stuff. It’s . . . well, it’s hard work, it is.
|Whaja mean there’s another newspaper out there again? You want me to do this every day?|