Admittedly, I have been known to do stupid things in the past. Like that time I ordered an inflatable Frankenstein head online.
Thinking back now, I’m not sure why I thunk that having an inflatable Frankenstein head would be good idea at all but I do remember assuming that the prefix ‘inflatable’ would at least mean it would be of a certain size and therefore take in a certain quantity of air.
Upon arrival in the post, I was more than a little dismayed to discover that even when ‘inflated’ my new inflatable Frankenstein head was little bigger than the size of my fist. I was further dismayed when I realised I’d paid 20 bucks for my new useless piece of un-inflatable cack.
People say you shouldn’t have regrets but every time I think about that inflatable Frankenstein head a little part of me withers inside.
Then there was the time that I didn’t take any Tracker Bars with me when I went to Lough Derg for a two-night stay at their luxury resort. Delirious with the hunger, I was. Delirious!
You may be thinking, cherished reader that I’m building up to suggesting that purloining Waffle has officially been categorised as one of those ‘stupid things’ from my past. But no. Even though he instigated blood pressure medication, costs me a fortune on fancy-dan dog food and whines like a rusty gate all the live-long day; if nothing else, the little humans love every hair on his hairy head – and that’s a lot of hairs.
No, I don’t think it would be healthy for me to harbour such regrets about Waffle, although I do rue the day that I dared to assume that he retained even a modicum of self-restraint.
Over recent weeks and months I have recorded and catalogued a lot of Waffle’s misdemeanours. Whether it’s chewing up ten pound notes, chundering on the back step or generally presenting himself as a portable trip hazard, there have been a great many misdemeanours and infractions of the in-house regulations. However, in recent times, the Hound has taken to redeveloping his bad habits. This new phenomenon manifests itself in various ways and on a regular basis.
For example, during a walk last week, about a mile from home, we both noticed an old beanie hat lying along the side of the road. All I did was look at the wizened old head garment (it looked like something the Banshee had cast off because it was no longer fashionable) but not so, wee Waffie.
Immediately Waffle made a bee-line for the hat, nose- a-twitching. But immediately too, I suggested in my best command voice, “Get outta that Hairyface!” Immediately again, Waffle stopped in his tracks, turned and backed away from the hat. Correspondingly, I too turned away and continued on in my stroll.
Moments later though, glancing back, I couldn’t help but notice that Waffle had returned to the sodden Banshee’s hat and was proceeding to lick all around it. That’s when I lost the head and only then, did Waffle take full notice of my instruction.
“Stupid dawg,” I muttered and continued on in my stroll, the sunlight a little dimmer and the clouds a little cloudier. “Maybe I’m going to have to start carrying a stick instead of a carrot.”
This new routine of command, pretend-to-obey, ignore command, return to the badness followed by me losing the head, repeats all the time now to the extent that I find that I am losing the head as a starting point. Otherwise, Wiggle-Waff pretends to obey but eventually succumbs to canine temptation, ignores me and then I have to lose the head anyway.
In the past week he’s been told to stay away from a pile of grass clippings (which he eventually stepped around in so as to green up his feet); he was warned to stay out of the flowerbed and away from the newly planted marigolds (which he eventually dug up and ruined); and he was told to “clear off to fup,” away from some bird seed that I had set out on a saucer for the birds (which he eventually ate and then licked the plate). On each of these occasions, I’d notice him making a move for his target, I’d warn him off with a vicious bark of my own and then when my back was turned, he’d sneakily return to his target of choice.
“You’re not exactly working your way into my good books,” I told him after the bird seed debacle and after my blood pressure had returned to an acceptable level.
In response, Waffle disappeared only to return with the blue rubber bone that he likes to chew on and play fetch with.
“Forget it, Hairyface,” I told him, the huff still upon me.
And then Waffle only goes and surpasses himself with a galactically stupid act that only the most congenitally conniving could achieve.
On the night in question and as per the usual evening routine, I checked that the back door was locked and then I suggested that Waffle hit the sack. As per his usual evening routine, Waffle crossed the kitchen as slowly as possible for a creature to move without standing still.
“Could you not walk a bit slower?” I always ask but Waffle never replies. I imagine him thinking, “Gone give over for one friggin’ night, will you?”
However, it was only upon his arrival at his bed in the back hall that I noticed he began curling up onto a garment which had hitherto not been present in said bed: The Banshee’s minging aul beanie hat. Slowly, my beer-addled brain kicked into gear and I realised what had transpired. After being twice warned away from the stinking Banshee hat, following our walk, Waffle had later returned to the scene of its discovery – a mile away from the house – picked up the hat, and returned to place it in his bed in the back hall.
“Seriously?” I asked him and for a long moment I considered just letting him snuggle away into the stupid contraband. But no. As calmly as I could manage and without a single angry word, I reached down and gingerly plucked up the hotching beanie between thumb and forefinger. A quick nip outside and the hat was consigned to the black bin once and for all.
A quick visit to Waffle again to make sure he was still a-bed, I also warned him against any Banshee related whining at the loss of his security blanket.
“Next thing you’ll be ordering inflatable Frankenstein heads online and then chewing them up,” I added, more to myself than anyone else.
Stupid is as stupid does, as Mr Gump would say.
This new routine of command, pretend-to-obey, ignore command, return to the badness followed by me losing the head, repeats all the time now to the extent that I find that I am losing the head as a starting point
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