Why I’m 1,063 in Dog Years

I have been awake for three hours.

Thanks to something magical and incomprehensible, like a wormhole through time and space or even the mystery of a lava lamp or what makes a Jack in the Box taco so compelling, I’m pretty sure I’ve aged approximately 63.429 years in that three hours.

Let me illuminate.

Last night we drove back from The Big City and our conference but decided to cut the journey short by an hour by spending the night with my parents.  We needed to collect the last of our belongings, mainly clothing and the dogs, and drive them up to our mountaintop dwelling place.

This morning we overslept, which started everything off on the wrong foot.

To clarify the facts, we have two toy poodles and a Great Dane.  Also numbered in our party are three children in car seats and two full-grown adults carrying a little extra fluff I like to call “the lard baby.”

We were driving the full-sized, 4×4, four-door pick up truck named Bruce.

(Bruce and Stella (the Suburban I usually drive) are not married, although they’re both good-looking, husky beings.  They have a genuine fondness and understanding for one another, both being Chevrolet’s, but we’ve discouraged the hookup until Uno is at least 15 years old.  We just don’t need little Chevy’s running around here.)

(Wait, it doesn’t work that way?  Really?!  I thought there was a natural order to reproduction!)

In theory our road trip and vehicle selection was going to work out because the dogs could hang out in the bed of the truck for the hour-long journey north.  But in reality it was tricky because when we left for The Big City from the mountain town we loaded the back of the truck with scrap metal to sell but when we got down to The Big City we discovered we had the wrong composition of scrap for the dealer we were visiting.

Then we ran out of time to visit other scrap metal dealers and thus traveled back to the mountains with a pickup bed full of scrap metal and a cab full of grown ups and car seats.

Ultimate situation this morning: running late, full truck bed, three kids locked up in their seats and a Great Dane freaking out and trying to jump into the kid’s laps, which didn’t work out so well.

Did I mention Penny the Poodle is in heat?

Yep.  I put a diaper on her.

So, we finally got everyone loaded.  The girls got the luggage packed underneath their legs and we positioned the Great Dane between us on the bench seat.  I had a poodle on my lap and the diaper-wearing poodle sat on top of the Great Dane.

She likes it there, promise.  I tell you about her activity there in a minute.

All of this was “golden” for the first 15 minutes of our trip.  By that time we had gotten into town and the Great Dane, who doesn’t get out much, realized there were people on the sidewalks she’d never seen before.

The only logical option for the Great Dane was to get all excited, slobber, and lunge at the side window.

Poodles went flying.

People on the sidewalk jumped back and visibly gulped.  They might have cussed but I’m not that adept at reading lips.

The diaper stayed on.

The stop light turned green.

We drove on.

To add to the drama – because there wasn’t enough already – the lid of the milk bottle flew off and milk went everywhere.


Now, if you think the kids were quiet in the back seat, let me assure you, they were not.  In fact, Tres was adding her opinion to the proceedings by screeching, “Mwahh!  Ahh!  Aahh!  Tchee!”

Dos was injured by a misplaced toenail during the mad Great Dane leap to the back seat.  So she kept trying to get the Dane’s attention, “Samba!  Samba!  You hurt me!  You need to say sorry!”

Uno was more concerned with the aesthetics of the operation.  Dogs tend to pant when they’re stressed out and, of course, Penny the Diapered Poodle had that not-so-fresh scent.

It was, admittedly, quite smelly.

Uno says, “Ug!  It smells so bad in here!  I wanna cut my nose off because of the stink!”

So, safely away from the sidewalked area of the journey, Lizard let the windows down.

Tres, offended by the wind blowing through her tufts of hair, began screaming in protest.

It begs the question: of all the five senses, which is most important?  Is there a hierarchy?

Sight? Hearing? Taste? Touch? Scent?

Really, if there were a World’s Strongest Senses competition and all the senses got to put forth their hot-pant-wearing representatives, which would win?

For us, today, the sense of hearing bested the sense of smell.

We rolled the window up and the baby stopped screaming.

At this point we’d gone about 25-minutes into our 45-minute journey and I tried to shoot myself but the gun was covered in milk and wouldn’t fire.

The dogs settled down, the kids stopped screaming, and the road stretched before us with promise.

So, excitement aside, the diapered poodle settled onto the top of the Great Dane to begin her dental hygeine work.

Lizard says this is a normal display of canine submission but I’ve never seen it before this pair.  The poodle places her entire head inside the lips of the Great Dane and licks her teeth.  It’s really intimate and really gross and they do it several times a day.

I wish I could paint a better word picture for you of the sight of the large jowl draped across the poodle’s head so only the poodle’s brow line and top knot are visible.

Maybe you need to see it to understand but please, believe me, it’s disturbing.

We drove on.

The girls began to serenade us with remarkable, off-tuned, one-note skill.  Their monotones did not conform to the traditionally recognized Western scale.

I began to sweat while the poodle on my lap continued to pant heavily.

Dos stopped singing to chant, “No problem, no problem, no problem, no problem, no problem, no problem, no problem….”

Au contraire, mon frere, Houston, we have a problem!

We finally made it back to our mouse hole and I thought, with a sigh of relief, that we were in the clear!

Except, in setting up the monstrous dog crate we’ve discovered an entire wall of our new home has rot.

Ants.  Carpenter Ants.  Millions of ants.  A pile of dead ants at least two inches high while more ants coming seething from the wall to hit the ant spray and fall to the pile again.

A living science experiment, right here in our home!

We are such a good home school family.

Thanks for sticking with me for this long post of our morning’s activities.  If it made you laugh, please rate it and share it with your friends, family, or strangers on the street.  No promises my Dane won’t find the stranger on the street and bark at them, though.

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2 thoughts on “Why I’m 1,063 in Dog Years

  • July 18, 2011 at 6:19 pm

    only you could endure this epic and live to write about it with such flair.
    Once again, cracked me up, Dear Heart!

  • July 20, 2011 at 6:42 pm

    that is hilarious,love your stories,road trips with your family are fun,i remenber those days.tell everyone hi.


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