A Flip Side Collection

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Only one family member can drive us completely insane all the time and get away with it.

On numerous occasions I get asked if he is still alive, and usually he tends to be. After driving us nuts, his second favorite game involves catching a tennis ball in his mouth, slobbering all over it, then ripping it apart. No, no, silly itís not my brother. George, my dog, is solely responsible.

Somehow his favorite game is a lot more entertaining. On his stomping grounds (as he likes to call Pleasant Pond) he is more famous than anything. All the neighbors up and down the lake know him as the Black Dart, or the Frog Dog, because he canít let the boat leave his sight. Itís in the doggie rule book, number 2734.1 B. Do not let thy boateth leaveth thine eyes. And he never, ever breaks that rule.

If we happen to be speeding down the lake, he keeps parallel with the boat on land. Youíll see the Dart running through every lawn on our side of the water, barking furiously because his boat is moving. One time an old neighbor was laying back in a lawn chair, and lo and behold the Dart scooted under the chair, almost knocking him out of the chair. At first he didnít know what hit him, but when George came back his way he had a pretty good guess, Iíll bet.

But then thereís the Frog. When the boat is moving at idle speed, heíll swim up and down the lake, keeping a watchful snout towards our Four Winns and doggy paddling right along with us. He is such a nuisance that he has been rescued by angry boaters who think we neglect our dog. He has gotten all tangled up in the ski line, which is just sort of serious, so I dive in to (tighten the knot-- ha ha ha) let him free.

Oh no, it doesnít just stop with the powerboat. My mother and father went for an early morning canoe ride on the glass-smooth lake, and guess who was there tagging along, huffing and puffing in the water? They paddled around, telling him to go home, but no. He doggie-paddled steadily with them until my father almost tipped the canoe over with rage. Then the waterlogged canine had to be hauled into the boat and paddled home, rocking the canoe back and forth all the way.

But now the boats are out for the season, and for the ďlong eared, long nosed, blueberry plucking, sproingedy legged, waggly tailedĒ creature, as my dad and I like to call him, swimming season is done. For now, he likes to pluck blueberries from the bush while heís being walked. Next, he gets to skitter across the ice in the winter, not chasing anything but his shadow. And sometimes, a hockey puck.

Quite frankly, I know that heíll find another creative way to endanger his life, keeping him busy until he can go out on a fraction of an inch thick ice. Maybe it will be running out in the woods during hunting season, or even going on our neighborís lawn. Well, Iíll just have to wait and see.

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© By Paul Adams