More characteristically dogged Bostonian reflections
Image: From the collaboration files – My fridge (!) in the current Sandy Skoglund radioactive cats installation at Smith College Museum of Art. Those are cats. They are not giant cats. They are radioactive.
It’s been a gosh-icly reminiscent week. I guess this is Part Deux (the French bit will have relevance in a bit), as I wrote a post I now think of as Part One here. Part Deux spontaneously wrote itself because I am in a show in Boston coming up, posted about here. The reception is August 23, or so I think, so I am doggedly emailing all my friends and acquaintances in Boston in hopes of seeing some familiar faces at the reception. Next I’ll work on the email list of exes, none of which I left in Texas.
The most memorable reception I ever attended in Boston was a fundraiser benefiting the MSPCA, featuring work by Henry Horenstein (Poodley example pictured at left) and an auction of caninely artwork befitting the cause. It was in the SOWA district–I kinda think it was the Bernard Toale Gallery but I am not positive and I can’t find any google results for it.
People were $25 to get in and “Good Dogs” were free. They served hot dogs, devil dogs, red dog beer, some sort of dog wine (Mad Dog 20/20? – that would have been hilarious) and in one room were 3 silver bowls on the floor, small medium and large; each logically filled with small, medium or large dog biscuits, respectively, for the canine guests. I noticed that people with dogs on leashes would nonchalantly glance about and then sort of look the other way and ‘accidentally’ drop their end of the leashes so the dog(s) could run free. I did the same. Jamoka had a blast and doggedly pursued this one hot bitch, to no avail. I don’t think she sniffed that his father was a show dog named, “Life of Riley”. On the way home I assured him that it was her loss. He liked to sit in the front seat and he liked to hold hands while we drove, although I had to drop his hand when I shifted. He understood that.
The gallery was near his daycare, Dog Day Afternoons, for which acceptance he had to show paperwork detailing his veterinarian history and go for an interview and answer questions like, “Where do you see yourself in 5 years?”, and, “What would you say are your weak points?”. The daycare was at the corner of Harrison and Melnea Cass and the local hoodlums boys would ride their bikes past and shout at the dogs to get them riled up and the dogs would all run along with them on their side of the fence, barking trash at them all the while. The woman who ran the daycare said to me one day about them, “I have to yell at them once in a while so they think they are pissing me off. Otherwise they stop hassling the dogs. The dogs so enjoy this game.”
One day when I picked up Jamoka after work I noticed a new Shar-Pei and casually asked if this was a new dog. The woman who ran the day care turned to me and whispered, “That’s Pei, he’s new and he doesn’t speak any english but we are doing the best we can. ” I thought it hilarious that she didn’t want to offend Pei, in a language he didn’t understand, by whisperingly pointing out that he didn’t speak said language. Evidently Pei’s owners were Chinese and taught the dog all words in Chinese which is logical since Shar-Peis are from China. This makes me think of sharpies because if you take out the dash, the name is like a typo of “sharpies”, and it is pronounced like how I would say “sharpie” in my fake french accent.
One day after dropping Jamoka off at Dog day Afternoons, I took a short cut that got me lost in that nearby neighborhood that’s always in the news for drivebys and other shenanigans. At a red light I was behind a bus when I noticed it was not moving even though the light had turned green and that the LED readout thingie on the back that usually read out the bus route number was alternately flashing the words, “CALL” and “COPS”. After a few such cycles I thought to call 911. They said “thank you very much, we’ll be right there”, so I asked “Oh. Should I wait?”, and they asked, incredulously, “are you still behind the bus?”, and when I nodded yes they said, impatiently, “get out of there now.”
So, back at the reception, everyone got doggie bags with Old Navy dog toys, accessories of sartorial splendor, liver pate treats, and travel meal packs. I went with a friend who was dogless so Jamoka got two gift bags, one for each hand. I’d like to go to another reception just like that. I wore jet black shedded Jamokan fur-lined clothing and a naturally dogged determination to get with the food and wine.
I have a few times dreamed of eating my Chacarero with extra hot sauce. I will bring a pile of them back for my friends. I miss the Barking Crab a lot too. I will bring my Airstream Landyacht so I can load it with foods I miss. I don’t miss meter maids though, come to think of it. Although, I owe my writing ‘career’ to meter maids and the love notes they frequently wiper-bladed to my windshield. There were nights I circled the block for ages to find a spot near my apartment and I’d get desperate and assess potential illegal spots by the price of the ticket like, it’s 20$ to park here but that hydrant would be $75, and so on. I have written some very creative and appealing letters to the parking clerk in the past and some of them have been fruitful.