Sunday, April 27, 2008

With Love from Ernie

So long pals, me and Ernie are in the wind. Day is done, gone the blog. We hope you've enjoyed it. There are no more tales for now but with such a monstrous and heavenly hound, there will surely be more in the future. I'll let you know.

Thursday, April 24, 2008


What is a Basset Hound?
He looks so old to be so young, so sad to be so gay,
This Basset Hound with wrinkled brow is in my heart to stay.
With four short legs and happy tail and ears that drag the ground,
With a crazy habit all his own of sleeping upside down.
He gives love in abundance, enough for me to share,
With all the neighbors on the block and much, much more to spare.
His dress is quite peculiar, I’m sure that you’d surmise,
He wears a very elegant coat but it must be twice his size.
Twice usual size, inside his chest, is a heart that’s made of gold,
God must have been in a jovial mood when He made the Basset mold.
He’s quite a clown by nature, in looks and actions too,
He cheers you up when you are down and loves you when you’re blue.
And when you’re ready for a romp, he’s always there to play,
This funny guy with wrinkled brow is in my heart to stay.
(Author Unknown)

Ernie the Hero?: The Truth Comes Out

The previous tale was mostly fact. Mostly, except for Ernie's role in the story. Though he did in fact play a role in bringing my precious rabbits to me, twas a far more sinister and far less wonder dog role than I made it appear. TRUTH BE TOLD, (and I'll be brief), there was no dog stranger in the yard that day that killed the rabbit mother. BUT before you yell MURDER MURDER IN THE FIRST DEGREE, don't jump so quickly to conclusions. Ernie did NOT kill the mother rabbit. Buthedidchaseherawayandthensniffthebabieswhichmeantthemotherwouldnevercomebackagai(soitoldmyself)andsothatswhyiraisedthebabyrabbitsandernietriedtoeatthemonnumerous occasions. So now you know. After all he IS a hound.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Ernie the Hero: Friend of the Rabbit, 2001

Ernie is a cuddler (despite being an almost-murderer) because I coddled and swaddled him. I coddle and swaddle everything- everything in babyhood. Among my surrogates have been in no particular order: a kitten named Lizzy that lived in my shirt, Baby Willy (God rest his soul) the little squirrel that couldn't, Ernie (of course) and three wild rabbits without a friend in the world named Peanut, Gracie and Henry.

The cat belonged to my cousin, the squirrel belonged then and now to God and a construction site, Ernie to me and Peanut, Gracie and Henry to Ernie. But how you say? Did I buy Ernie pet rabbits for experiment, sadistic(ness) or fun? No, it was just the reverse as Ernie brought my beloved bunnies to me.

On a hot June day in 2001 when I was (as aforementioned in Ernie's Humble Beginnings ), just a wide-eyed chubby BY NO FAULT OF MY OWN 13-year-old, there came from the side yard a ruckus. OH I heard SUCH a clatter, and I sprang from my house to see what was the matter. And I saw Ernie running running running and barking barking (and he is quite the quiet sir on most occasions), and I darted through the iron gate to see what was making this chaos and uproar. And I saw Ernie valiantly chasing a dog (who was quite a stranger to us all) from our yard. Merely territorial? So I thought. But no, when I looked closer, into the little crevice at the base of the tree around which Ernie was running I saw, nestled gently and deeply into the cave of bark and grass, three baby wild rabbits. Not far from the little burrow, lay their mother- dead from the other dog's attack. OH THE HORROR.

But then, collecting myself from the sorrow of the dead mother, I took stock of what was saved AND I SAID TO MYSELF, ERNIE! You're magnificent! You angel! My heart was all aflutter with the opportunity to take these poor orphaned rabbits into my own care- to mother them and fatten them up so they would not starve to death- or worse- fall victim to the predators of the wild.

So I took them into my house, made a new home for them out of cardboard and grass. I fed them baby formula with a syringe everyday and every evening they slept nestled under my chin- warm and full. And Henry, Peanut, Gracie and I spent a wonderful June together, laughing and snuggling. Soon they were so well fed and chubby in their babyhood, they even began to look like me. Oh my little rabbit children. But, as all good things and childhoods must, ours and theirs came to an end in the middle of July as they, strong enough to survive on their own, and I, bored enough to go to summer camp, were parted by nature and time. I set them free in a little wood at the base of a big hill near a stream where they DID NOT GET EATEN BY BEARS, (CHARLIE BALDWIN). But I will never forget my rabbits, Gracie, Henry and Peanut, and the magnificent hero that saved them, Ernie Foster.

***Author's note: Creative license was taken liberally in this story to shed Ernie in a new light of good intention. I will tell you how in my next entry, for, like before, I must gather my strength before I publicly out my heavenly dog for the brat he can really be and mostly is (God love him). I apologize (not in advance) for just lying to you about Ernie's role in this tale.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Basset Hound Beat Box

This has nothing to do with you, me or Ernie EXCEPT THAT ITS JUST SO FUNNY AND GREAT.

Ernie in Oils

As promised, I would now like to tell you about the portrait of Ernie's countenance in his family home. In a little paneled library on Arrowhead Road is a piece worthy of the Louvre. If not the Louvre, then most definitely at the VERY least, the Met. But whether worthy of the Louvre or the Met, neither will have this masterpiece for it is mine. To your left is a poor quality photograph of a black and white print of said masterpiece. The original, of course, is in color.

AND TRUTH BE TOLD, this picture is of the stationary my mother had made after the small dulpicate prints that came with the portrait of my humble pup. Send me a gift, invite me to dinner or to a vacation home and you will receive my petite mut and some kind words in return.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Ernie, Attempted Murderer: The Deadly Thing He Nearly Did

As previously mentioned, Ernie Foster abhors being lonesome. And worse, he simply will not tolerate separation by water. Perhaps more than any other separation (you will remember the others: by door, space and time), water is by far the worst. SIMPLY because Ernie is NOT a water dog. And were he to jump into a significant depth of water without a lifejacket, his long handsome ears would fill up up UP and he would drown drown DROWN. And his legs would be no help as they are approximately 8 inches long on any given Sunday.

NOW, to get to the horrible thing he nearly did. I'm ready to tell you.

The year was 2006, the month undoubtedly September. Twas the last days of the Indian summer and just before fall wrapped its crisp fingers around the air, my parents took my pooch to spend one last weekend at Lake Cumberland. Had they known then what they know now, they would've surely left Ernie at home to rest. As it were, hindsight is 20/20 and Ernie was at the lake.

It just so happened that on this particular weekend, it was Dock Day. As I mentioned earlier, fall was approaching and the docks in the neighborhoods nestled into the treetopped hills around the lakeshore needed to be removed for the winter. My father, being a man obsessed with boating and doing capable, mechanical things involving ropes and pullies, was out with the other men helping to bring in the docks. My mother waited on shore in the golfcart with WHO ELSE but the murderous wretch-to-be, Ernie Foster. You will soon see the madness that ensued when Ernie, being separated by water from his favorite pal, (my father), finally CRACKED and lost his shit.

I must also tell you that Ernie is a meanderer. He expects to be petted by everyone who sees him because AFTERALL he knows what he looks like. He is accustomed to attention from everyone and anyone every time and any time he crosses paths will anyone and everyone. But he does tire of children who yank and pull AND he hates puppies (though that is irrelevant and in my opinion is rooted in cyclical abuse theories). So after a few minutes of meandering around the dock on his long leash being petted, praised and cooed over, Ernie decided that he was finished with the child who was now poking and prodding. He returned to the golf cart to sit with my mother. OR SO SHE THOUGHT.

Not but a few moments had he been seated quietly in the cart when the murderous urge struck him. AND THEN QUICK AS A FLASH ERNIE STAMPED HIS PAW TO RELEASE THE EMERGENCY BRAKE AND THE CART WENT DOWN DOWN DOWN SPEEDING DOWN THE DOCK (WHICH IS AS ALL DOCKS ARE QUITE AN INCLINE) FASTER AND FASTER. MOM STRUGGLED FUTILEY TO PULL ERNIE OFF THE GAS BUT FAILED. DOWN DOWN DOWN WENT THE CART UNTIL CRASH!!!!!!!!! CRASH!!!!! CRASH!!!!!!!!! INTO YOU-WILL-NOT-BELIEVE-WHAT BUT AN 80-YEAR-OLD MAN. The man fell to the ground screaming "MURDER MURDER!" But ERNIE'S BLOOD THIRSTY BUGGY CONTINUED DOWN DOWN UNTIL THE LAKE WAS ONLY MOMENTS AWAY. He was going to kill Mom too I just know it. But then with ALL her STRENGTH she gave one final MAGNIFICENT YANK and pulled the powerful beast off the gas and JUST before the water gulp gulp gulped up the golf cart she SLAMMED on the brakes and the murder mobile came to a SCREECHING halt. SCREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEECH!!!!!!!!!!!

Thankfully the old man was only peaved and not dead. As was my mother. As for Ernie, he just sat politely in the seat from which he nearly did what he tried to do - ears back, nose trembling. Perhaps it was fear in his eyes- perhaps he didn't mean to release the emergency break and almost kill an old man. Perhaps. BUT PERHAPS IT WAS ANGER AT A FOILED PLAN AT DESTRUCTION OF LIFE AND PROPERTY THAT MADE HIM SO TWITCHY. I suppose we'll never know, really, but if anything can be learned from this terrible thing Ernie did (or nearly did), it is in fact most definitely that separation from loved ones by water, for him, is absolutely NOT an option. And if you ignore this simple fact about Ernie Foster, he will turn at best reckless at worst deadly. Let it be a lesson to you.