Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Groovy Ink

Ms Owner can be rather timid and skeptical when it comes to trying out new things. But for her recent birthday, she decided to do something entirely different, something out of her comfort zone and boy, did she go all the way for this one.
She got a tattoo of her favourite person on her back … not Mr Owner, but me! Not one of those teenie-weenie itsy-bitsy ones but a fairly sizeable portrait. Said that she needed to buck the trend and do something daring for once. Well, she only needed to look at me for inspiration cause ‘Daredevil’ is my middle name. But a tattoo of me is also good …

After sifting through a number of photos, the tattoo artist finally decided on a mugshot of smiley me with a black scarf. Personally, I would have chosen a more macho, no nonsense, no smiley face shot … after all, it is a tattoo and tattoos are meant to be rough, tough and intimidating. But I didn’t have any say in it, so I guess I’ll have to live up to the smiley face persona for the rest of my life.

She decided on a black and grey portrait, cause colour would have meant a lot of white patches on her back and she didn’t want that.
On appointment day, the assistant finished stenciling the sketch on carbon paper, which was then transferred onto her back. This gives an outline for the artist to work on. The tattooist, Joshua, worked non-stop and was quick with the drill and needle. Here’s a shot of Ms Owner trying to ignore the pain by biting on her lip and pretending to be in a ‘safe place’. No pain, no gain …There was a whole lot of drilling, piercing, prodding and scrapping which seemed to go on and on but she survived the ordeal without much ado. Mr Owner said she lost a little blood in the process but I think he’s just trying to scare us.
4 1/2 hours later, this was the end result. Groovy and very nice details, I must say. Not too cutesy … fairly rugged and individualistic representation of me. Thanks to the Black Cat artists for indulging in my owner’s whims and producing a genuine work of art. I’m impressed.
Wonder if they do tattoos for dogs as well … not for identification purposes but a real one. Heard that you would have to shave off the part being tattooed, which means having to go naked and furless! Not cool … maybe I will opt for a radical haircut with highlights instead.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

My buddy, Bank … always in our hearts.

Bank, 3 yo male GR with a fluffy mane and a really long tongue. He happens to be one of a handful of ‘guy’ friends that I have, and quite possibly my closest pal. JRTs don’t fancy much of dogs of the same sex and I’m no different. In fact, when I first met him when he was still a pup, I gave him the usual top dog treatment and told him to observe the hierarchy at our training grounds, that he was at the bottom of the food chain … so he had better behave.

As we trained and played together, I noticed that we shared a few things in common. He enjoys soaking in cool puddles, the mud baths and getting down and dirty. He enjoys licking people. He enjoys dog sports. He even enjoys laying under a tap of running water after each training session to cool down, just like me! And hey, I thought this fellow must be cool and started hanging out with him. I gave him some tips on agility and he gave me some on OB and pretty soon, we were best of friends. Plus, he grew into a sizeable GR and big friends are always good to have around.

When I mentioned that he enjoys licking people, I was being kind. He actually drools profusely on anyone and everyone he meets, and leaves a steady stream of saliva on their limbs or worse still, around their crotch area! What a funny guy.
Every Sunday morning just before training sessions, we would chat about the state of dog sports in this country, how we wished we had more trials to take part in and more travels to embark on. We also talked about the babes at our training school, how rough and tough they were and how we had to be on our toes all the time so as not to appear to be second best.
Bank was a lively fellow and possibly the most active retriever I have met in my life. He enjoyed play and dog sports, but our hot and humid weather meant that he could only do so for very brief periods before his tongue started to bungee drool and flip flop all over the place. But that didn’t stop him from taking up agility, learnt all obstacles in no time and was amongst the pioneer batch of large breed dogs who could run a full agility course. He went even further and was one of the talented few who can perform a send/ call through 12 pole weave on command, groovy!
His skills were varied. From anchoring the group stay to delivering the scroll for the opening ceremony, Bank had a regular role in our dog shows and demos. Also adept at OB, his natural retrieving ability came in handy when he helped deliver a rose as part of a surprise marriage proposal by a fellow dog lover, during our 3rd Dog Carnival. His flair and exuberance will be hard to emulate.
A core member of the PetnYou Dog Squad, Bank was keenly involved in dog sports, trials, charity work and demos. He was part of our Agility, Obedience and Super Weave Pole demo team and Official scroll bearer. Always affable and the only one who can actually put up with the strange and odd habits of the rest of the Dog Squad.
I lost my treasured friend last Sunday (16 June 2008). Bank left us at the tender age of 3. The Malaysian weather hasn’t been kind to him and the stifling heat took its toll on him. My owners are naturally upset and our deepest condolences go out to fellow trainer, Chan and his family, on the loss of their able dog.
Bank was the gentle giant who deftly maneuvered the weave poles with the greatest of ease. Bank was the slobbering Golden who made me laugh each time he left his ‘mark’ upon greeting unsuspecting humans. Bank was my buddy.

I try to put on a brave face but I already miss my regular Sunday morning chats with him ... wish you were here, Bank.

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