Monday, June 26, 2006

Buddy’s Schedule

After making his point by barking at the Motorcycle Guy around 8:00 am, twice if necessary, Buddy goes back to bed with my son. He gets up around 9:00 for the day, goes in and out to eat, use the facilities, lie in the sun, and get pats. For all of these activities he must be let out, and then in again. Though Buddy is a dog, he clearly thinks of himself as a human, and so must sit inside with the other humans, on the couch if possible.

The highlight of a normal day, a non-Trash Day, is the arrival of the postman. Buddy can hear the postman from several houses up. He races to the front door, from the backyard if necessary. Buddy can open the screen door (I wouldn’t mind so much if he’d just close it). He barks, frenzied barking, like we’re all in mortal danger. The evil postman has arrived bearing deadly mail. The postman comes everyday, and everyday Buddy must protect us against the known danger of Direct Mail advertising circulars. Everyday Buddy strives to save us from certain peril— and it works, everyday the postman leaves us unharmed.

Today, the postman just sighs and puts the mail in the box by the front door. He knows that Buddy is just the first dog on this street, and that Buddy’s barks announce his eminent arrival, and sure enough, the chorus of barking begins to cascade down the block. The postman once told me that if he can manage to get by without Buddy hearing him, a rare day indeed, that the other dogs are caught unaware, and many of them continue to nap on their doggie beds, and don’t even bother to bark. But Buddy’s vigilance reminds them that they too are supposed to be on guard against the evil postman.

Today, the Postman shakes his head while I reassure him that if Buddy did get out, he’d just jump on him and want pats; I am not sure about this; Buddy really hates the postman. Buddy loves everybody, but he really hates the postman. I can’t figure it out. It’s been the same postman for many years. I talk to the postman. The postman is friendly. We give a tip to the postman at Christmas. Buddy hates him. Buddy is a smart dog. Buddy is smarter than some people I know. If Buddy had opposable thumbs and could talk, he’d be human. Buddy hates the postman, and he barks at him everyday.

Buddy will bark several more times during the day, necessitating that we let him in and out so that he can keep his schedule. When there’s nothing to bark at, he will go outside and run around the yard barking, just hoping to drum up some business. That’s a normal day for Buddy, a day like any other day, unless it’s Thursday; Thursday is Trash Day.

No comments: