Angel Jake at the RBC (Rainbow Broadcasting Corporation)

Angel Jake at the RBC (Rainbow Broadcasting Corporation)

Monday, July 30, 2007

Cyberspace as a Warm and Loving Place

In the two days since Oscar died so suddenly, an amazing 182 comments have been left on his blog. So many of us, devastated at his loss, rushed to share Katy and Martin's sorrow.

It set my Mom to thinking. As always, when she is musing about something, she asked, "Jake, what do you think?" And (with apologies to the New Yorker cartoon) I told her what I always tell her: Woof!!

Which she interpreted in the following way:

Writing a dogblog is incredibly captivating. There's the dog's unique personality and then there's the human's own personality and they become so intertwined that it's hard to know where one ends and the other begins. But then, in expressing sadness and sympathy to Oscar's family, so many humans took off their dog masks and said, "Here we are. We feel for you and we are grieving with you. And so are our dogs."

It's a fascinating, previously unimaginable, form of communication. It's called "virtual." But an ocean of real, not virtual, tears were shed behind those 182 comments -- and perhaps only five or ten, if that many of us, actually met Oscar and his family other than through his fun and friendly blogs and comments on other's posts.

I guess what Mom is trying to say is that we are on to something wonderful. So: Woof!!!

(I guess many of you have already figured this out -- but we're still kind of new at this.)


Sunday, July 29, 2007

Photos from the AKC Dog Museum

Two years ago, Mom and Dad visited the Dog Museum in St. Louis that Gussie just visited. These are some of the pictures they took of the amazing art work. (We weren't there - story of our lives so far...) The second from the top one is part of a tribute wall that goes all around a large room. The third one is by Maud Earl and the next by Wardle, who loved to paint wires. (They looked a bit different then, didn't they?) And the next one of the hunting dog just makes us laugh and think about how the world might be!!

Jake and Just Harry

Missing Our New Pal, Oscar

It's no secret among us dogs how, in the course of just a few weeks -- one month almost to the day to be exact -- you can get to feel so close to a new pal -- and that's how it was with Oscar. We met him on June 29, and got to know what a sweet, fun-loving, clever guy he was -- and we will miss him.

So dogspeed Oscar. We know you are up there over the Rainbow Bridge, chatting with all your new friends and telling them what a wonderful life you had here with the folks who loved you so. We'll meet you again one day. Until then, with love,

Jake and Just Harry

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Too Broad a Brush?

My good friend Gussie suggested that I might have been a bit harsh in what I said about humans in my previous post. As he pointed out, there is the minority of bad guys and then there is the vast majority of folks who are kind to each other and to us, and who make the world a better place by their actions every day. I didn't mean to ignore that other better side. I was just struck by the two sides of the coin: the contrast between the Vick case and the achievements of a wonderful rescue dog.

I will have to have a serious discussion with "she who keeps the laptop" !!


Tribute to Jake, a World-Class Rescue Labrador

We read this morning that a black lab named Jake, a hero of the World Trade Center search for survivors after 9/11, died today from cancer. In addition to his work there, he had helped save many people after Hurricane Katrina and had performed other acts of bravery in his 11 years. And imagine this, he was adopted as a 10-month-old disabled puppy - abandoned on a street with a broken leg and a dislocated hip.
I guess I was attracted to the story because of the name, but beyond that is Jake's example of how we canines make such a difference in the world. We are brave and loyal. And we always speak the truth, unlike many humans out there.
How can some humans enjoy dog-fighting when so many of our kind make the world a better place? It is a puzzlement. A sad puzzlement.
Jake the Wire Fox Terrier

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

It's Getting Worse: Pencils and Pens Being Confiscated

Thank you all for your creative suggestions as to how I could commandeer the laptop that Mom seems to think belongs to her exclusively. I tried the paws on arm and adorable look -- the first time she gave me a snack; the second time, she took me outside to the pee bush. The third time, she said, Uh, uh, uh!!!!

Then it got worse: she was on the telephone when she heard a suspicious crunching coming from my cubicle (aka my crate which I use only for bedtime snacks, but JH likes to use for R & R rather than his own alongside). Upon inspection, she found that JH, in a brave attempt to find an alternative means of communication, had swiped a ball point pen from the table and had splintered it into a dozen pieces. All pieces were immediately confiscated. (The traces of blue ink on JH's muzzle did give him a slightly debonair look and he wore them as a badge of honor.)

The same thing has been happening to the No. 2 yellow lead pencils Mom used to leave around. After she discovered tooth marks on all, missing erasers, and a few fragments on the rug -- they too have been confiscated. (No photos, of course, because of the current lack of photographic as well as secretarial help.)

What's next:? I suspect I may have to resort to one of Fee's suggestions --dressing up in Mom's best shoes and makeup -- to make the point that, unless I get EQUAL COMPUTER ACCESS TIME, we're headed for a serious showdown.

Can you all hear our pathetic woofs?

Monday, July 23, 2007

Not All Computer Users Are Created Equal

Dear Friends,

It's been eight days since I have been able to put my paws on the computer. Why? She who is keeper of the laptop (and my daily kibble) has, she says, been overwhelmed with work and hasn't had time for my musings. She has not taken or downloaded new pictures. She has not answered the kind posts by some of my new friends. In short, I and my brother have been figuratively debarked -- cruel and unusual punishment for the Barkalot Boyz.

So just a few woofs to those who have wondered where we are. We are here -- and hoping to have our say shortly. If any of you have any ideas how we can regain our rightful access, let us know!!

Jake (and Just Harry)

Sunday, July 15, 2007

When We're Smilin', When We're Smilin'

Butch and Snickers tagged us to show our smiling faces. That may not be as easy as it sounds because, being of a philosophical nature, I don't smile much anymore as I realize what this world is all about. But here we go:

This is me as a puppy. I think I see the start of a smile when I realized I had a home where people loved me and I could be myself. Notice those ears -- they've never been the same since. Here I am laughing raucously -- does that count? -- because the Cardinals won a game on TV. (They haven't done that much lately. Not many smiles in our house when they lose.) This is when Mom and Dad took me on a long trip to Northern Florida and we spent two nights at a B&B in Gainesville which loved dogs . This is before JH. Since he arrived, we haven't gone on any more long rides.

And finally, here I am whenever I do get to go for a ride, however short, with Dad (or Mom).

As for my brother, check back on When Harry Met Jake Part Two and you'll see one proud happy smile!!!

Now, who shall I tag? I think -- 'cause we want to make new friends -- the Red Dachsies, whom we met early on, but haven't seen much of since; and two of the dogs who came after us: Buddy, a Havanaise from Spring Hill, Florida, right across the state from us; and Kaya, a Great Dane from Australia,

Hope that's OK!!


Saturday, July 14, 2007

Zut, alors, c'est le quatorze juillet!!!

For as long as I can remember -- 35 dog years?? -- Mom gets all excited on July 14th because it's what we call Bastille Day here in the U.S. of A. and the French call "le quatorze" -- just the way we say "the fourth."

She lived in Paris for a while, so the day reminds her of parades down the Champs d'Elysees; a huge illuminated blue, white, and red flag fluttering in the middle of the Arc de Triomphe; and lots of delicious steak and fries.....

To get in the mood this morning, she woke everybody with a stirring, off-key rendition of the Marseillaise. I guess it's better than fireworks redux, but we'd rather have some of that steak!!! (And it did stop the snoozin'!!!)

Friday, July 13, 2007

The Snooze Goes On

We've been quiet for a few days because we've been recovering from all the excitement at Dr. D's while the folks were away at the wedding. Mom keeps sneaking up on us to capture our exciting yawn, here we are. Sorry if this puts anyone to sleep...
(We do have lots of beds throughout the house, but when we're in this condition, any flat surface will do.)

Monday, July 9, 2007

But Where Were the Dawgs????

If you were having a wedding, wouldn't you want two adorable wire fox terriers to share in the celebration?

Sharing sand fron the beach in a Unity Ceremony.

Our brother and new sister-in-law.

Mom and Dogdad (aka FOG - Father of the Groom)
___________________________In case any of our new friends noticed we haven't had much to say since July 4th. Here's why: Mom and Dogdad took us to Dr. Dan's Animal Clinic (aka Camp) on the 5th so they could drive across the state to our human brother's wedding at a beautiful park in Sarasota, the Philippi Estate, over the weekend.

We wanted to go, we really did, but it wasn't to be. Nevertheless, we did have a good time doing what we like to do best: bark our heads off with the 20 plus other dogs who were at Dr. D.'s while their own humans were away over the long weekend. (So many dogs were getting picked up this morning, we had to stand in line for our baths!!)
But we're back now, and got to see some of the pictures the folks took of the wedding on 7.7.7. The highlights:

No rain, even though it had rained every day straight for the last few weeks.

A breeze so no one fainted in the 90 plus temperature.

Live music because the groom is a college band director with lots of friends who came to play - trumpets outside, then "big band" inside the mansion after the ceremony.

Musicians arriving to set up and practice. Later an awesome "big band" sound!

One of two cakes.

Lots of relatives: Three sets of grandparents. Four sets of parents. Many sisters. Aunts and uncles from St. Louis.

Lots of friends, musicians, and students.

With all those folks, how could anyone have minded that two fun-loving WFTs like me and my brother were celebrating too?

But never mind,we're home now, and about to do what we always do when we come home from "animal camp": snooze for three days to recover from all the excitement -- the barking, the late hours playing poker, the fun with the people there who have known me since I was a 4-month old puppy and love to play with us.

Hope everybody is staying cool!


Wednesday, July 4, 2007

It's Our Independence Day!!

We hold this truth to be self-evident: we terriers are born to be independent. So how come we let Mom put red, white, and blue bandanas on us; sit us down in a chair together; and make us look into the camera while she flashes lights at us?

Well, we think it's so we can, in our own independent way, share a few Happy Fourth of July woofs to celebrate the day!! After all, we are the Barkalot Boyz, Jake and Just Harry

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Yep, That's Me. Just Harry

All that talking tired me out.

When Harry Met Jake: Part Four

I don't know whether any of you who have been reading this blog have noticed that something is missing. Yes? No? I'll take that for a Maybe and tell you what I, Just Harry, have noticed. The something that's missing is my side of the story.

If you look at the title of this blog, it's The Barkalot Boyz. Boyz. Plural. More than one. And if you look at the title of this post -- and the three parts that preceded it -- you'll see that it says When Harry Met Jake. That's right. When I met him. But what have you heard so far? All about when Jake Met Harry. So, as we are about to celebrate Independence Day and the dog-given freedoms expressed in our Constitution, I think it's time for me to speak up and shed some light on how it really is.

In his posts, the Jakester took great delight in telling you all how I messed in my crate and peed on the couch in those early days and how I still occasionally have a few other personal problems. But did he tell you how, from the get-go, I was loving to everybody, licked their faces, jumped on their laps, and let everyone know how happy I was to be with them? Nope!

Mr. Grump told you all how I liked to steal his favorite toys. But did he tell you all the times I did a perfect play bow, with an enticing growl, to lure him into a game and he just turned around and walked away? Nope!!

Mr. Einstein told you how smart he was to outwit me in our under-the-bed chases. But did he tell you how quickly I learned -- just by watching him ask Mom for breakfast or dinner -- how food got served in this establishment and how to get to my bowl as fast as I could?. Or that maybe he plays Scrabble with Mom, but I help Dad with the crossword puzzle? Again, Nope!!!

Did Mr. Goody Four Paws tell you how he always has to be the first for everything: the first to go down stairs in the morning (if his body blow doesn't get me, his warning bark will), the first to get dressed (collar and harness) and undressed, the first to go out, the first to get fed, the first to get in the car -- and the first to sit when Mom says Sit!! But I bet he didn't tell you how he responds when Mom or Dad says "Jake, Come!" He usually ponders, then turns around in a full circle and lies down under a chair. Or how he can't stand it if I get to the door first when the UPS man or somebody else knocks.

If I'm telling you all this, it's not because I don't love him to pieces. I really do. I kiss his face whenever I can, even though he ignores me. I sniff him whenever I get the chance. I wait by the front door until he gets back from his walk. I curl up next to him on the couch to watch a movie. I wait patiently for my turn to get a treat. And I love to run and run and run in perfect circles with him when we get to go out to the golf course or the dog park. And I love to share good smells when we do walk together. I just want a little positive recognition -- after all, I'll be three or thereabouts in a few months.

Whew, that feels better.

But there's one more thing. My name. When I got turned into the kill-shelter, they said my name was Harry. And that's the name Ms. Lyn, who rescued me, gave Mom and Dad when they adopted me. But then I found myself in a family of "J's" -- Mom and Dad and Jake, all "J's." That wasn't right. So Mom asked Jake's terrier friends what they thought. Tribby, who lives in Lubbock, came up with Just Harry and everyone thought that was cool. They particularly liked it when England's Prince Harry, when asked what he liked to be called, responded, "Harry, Just Harry!"

Yep, that's me!!!

Sunday, July 1, 2007

When Harry Met Jake, Part Three

So who was Hurricane Wilma some of you have been wondering. A mythical dog? A feral cat? A long-lost aunt? A Tasmanian she-devil? Nope. Hurricane Wilma was just that -- a full-blown Category 5 hurricane, the 22th in the 2005 season which ultimately had 28 and ran out of letters in the alphabet to name them. While we think of 2005 as the year that Harry made landfall in our house after Katrina's brush with Florida, the folks at the National Hurricane Center think of that year as the most active hurricane season on record.

Of course, Katrina, who only touched Florida lightly in August before moving on to wreak havoc on the Gulf Coast, particularly New Orleans, was the most devastating hurricane, and everyone has heard about her. But for us, Wilma was the one who left her mark. It's when I got to know what a goofy guy Harry was, as we spent hours curled up together next to Mom and Dad, trying not to get too upset at the loud noises from the thunder claps and the heavy rains on our roof.

In an unusual approach, Wilma came up out of the southwest in late October and -- we think it was because she wanted to meet Harry -- came almost right over our house. For days before she arrived, we had the shutters up and had all our paraphernalia out: coolers, water jugs, lanterns, flashlights, battery-powered TVs, batteries of all sizes, and lots of non-perishable food, including extra snacks and treats for JH and me. And for days before she arrived, nothing was on TV except this big blob and warnings about having a PLAN. "So did we have a PLAN?" I kept asking Mom and Dad. "We'll be OK, won't we?" thinking about what had happened to Harry after Katrina. They reassured us we'd be OK, but there might be a time when we would just have "to hold it!" And we had to be prepared for very loud noises. And eventually no lights or air conditioning.

Well, after almost a week of our wondering where Wilma would land once she had finished with the Caribbean and Mexico, she hit Florida's southwest tip at night and then tore across the Everglades. We locked our shutters down, so when our lights went out around 2 am, it got really dark and really warm without the AC. Just like the folks had told us. But Harry and I did what we are really good at -- we went to sleep.

By morning, that big blob was sniffing distance away. The folks on non-stop TV coverage showed her path so precisely that we could see exactly where the eye was, just a few miles away, and knew the exact moment when it would pass just to the north of us. At one point, remembering that Harry and I were indeed "holding it," Dad opened the door to see if we could make a rush trip to our pee bush, but he changed his mind very quickly when he saw a tree limb blow past the house.

And then it was very very still, as the eye brushed our house. Dad did open the door and take us out; but we rushed back when the wind picked up and the rains started again. After a scary hour or so, though, it all died down, except for the last of the rain, and Dad told us it was all over and we had been very brave, very good boys.

Later, Mom and Dad took us for a careful inspection tour to see what had happened. Everything was different. Lots of our favorite trees were down, all kinds of stuff was strewn everywhere, and it was really hard to pick a path around the tree limbs and other odd things along the road.

But, I have to tell you, even though the lights throughout our neighborhood didn't come back on for another week, the weather got cool so we didn't suffer too much from the heat. Nobody went to work for a few days, so we got to go for long long walks with Mom and Dad every day. Nobody was playing golf either, so we got to romp on the empty course. Not too bad, from our point of view!!
Once people started cleaning up, we discovered what fun it was to pee on the piles of brush that had accumulated on the sides of the streets. Mom said they looked like mounds of snow piled up after a snowstorm up north. To pass the time, Mom and I played Scrabble with Dad by lantern-light. And I guess I finally realized that Harry was here to stay and it wasn't such a terrible thing.

In Part Four, I think Harry might have a few words to say. Should be interesting...