Sunday, August 26, 2012

"Travels with Henry" or "No, I'm Not Really an Ax Murderess"

The great thing about having a dog is that people cut you a lot of slack. Especially when the pup is too cute for their own good. Take for example, my recent trip to Canada. I was off to meet up with that intrepid blogger, nonamedufus.  

Rumor has it that this is what Dufus looks like in real life.
(At least that's what his brother would have you believe.)

You know what they say about encountering people you meet online... they always turn out to be ax murderers. Which means they're convinced, in turn, that you are also an ax murderess.

So, in order to perpetuate that stereotype, I never leave home without my trusty ax. It helped me survive my first close encounter with another blogger, Unfinished Person, earlier this summer. It was touch and go for a moment or two, but we called a truce before things got ugly...

In truth, Unfinished will never make it big as an ax murderer,
since he looks too much like a happy pirate.
Since we parted ways without finishing each other off, Still Unfinished (as he is also known) vouched for me with Dufus. That, plus the fact that I have a cute dog and the fact that Dufus had back-up in the guise of his lovely mate, Maryse, garnered me an invite to Chez Dufus. So, off we went... Henry, myself, a peace offering of a couple bottles of wine, and my trusty ax under the passenger seat of the car.  

Now, it's all well and good when you're off to meet American bloggers. However, a meeting with Dufus is somewhat more complicated since he happens to be Canadian. Which means you also need travel documents beyond the mapquest directions to Dufus's house. Passport and Henry's rabies certificate in hand, I reached the border.  

Canadian Customs Officer (examining travel documents which have been surrendered):  "What's the purpose of your visit to Canada, today?"  

Boom Boom:  "To have dinner with friends in Ottawa." (*Whom I've never met before and who are probably thinking I'm an ax murderess*) 

Canadian Customs Officer:  "Are you carrying any weapons with you?"

Boom Boom:  (*What? You mean like the ax I have under the passenger seat?*) "No." 

Canadian Customs Officer:  "Are you taking anything with you that you intend to leave in Canada?"

Boom Boom:  "No."  (*Except for the wine.*)

Canadian Customs Officer:  "Are you carrying any alcohol, tobacco or firearms?"

Boom Boom:  "No."  (*Lying through my teeth!*)

Henry:  "Woof!"

Canadian Customs Officer (smiling):  "Say, that's the cutest dog I've seen in a long time!"

Boom Boom: "Yes, too cute for his own good!"

Canadian Customs Officer (still smiling as he hands my travel documents back to me):  "Have a good day, eh?"

Boom Boom (as she drives away from the checkpoint):  "Good dog!  You're getting an extra treat tonight!"

And so it was that I was allowed to enter Canada and met Dufus and Maryse. As for how I knew Dufus wasn't an ax murderer? It was when I asked how to pronounce his wife's name. He replied, "Mahreeez...," pretending to tease her for being Quebecois. But I could tell, he really thinks she's magical... nobody can be an ax murderer who says his wife's name like that! Dufus has way too much love in his heart! That was also when Henry started giving him doggy kisses... and Henry's a good judge of character.

The lovely Maryse. whose birthday also happens to be today!

    Boom Boom, Henry and Dufus.               

"Now... who to visit next?,"  she asks herself as she puts a fine edge back on her ax.  

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Under Windsor Bridge: A Magpie Tale dedicated to Indigo Roth

Under Windsor Bridge, 1912, by Adolphe Valette

When she originally planned her birthday party at the Euthanasia Curry House, it had seemed a grand and glorious idea. Now she wasn't so sure.  Granted, the things she had heard about it and its exotic clientele had given her pause, but she was looking for a change and change she would have.  Her life had become so dull of late and she wanted to feel alive again. The fact that her birthday coincided with the Annual Evil Genius Scavenger Hunt only made the prospect of a very British birthday even more enticing.

So, the invitations had been sent, the cake ordered and the birthday frock taken out of storage.  The waiting was over and the time had come to meet her fate.

Would any of her guests actually show up?  Would there be gifts beyond what was gathered during the scavenger hunt?  Would her 60th birthday be her last?

The fog enveloped her as she took a deep breath and approached the figure in the bowler hat.  There was the faintest of rumblings and the ground began to shake beneath her.

With a flash of light, she was transported from Windsor Bridge to that mysterious and most elusive of villages, Slobbering-Under-the-Bed.

Could it be?  Was that...?

"Welcome, Madame," said Elliot Nesh.  "The rest of your party has already arrived.  Let the games begin..."

She thought to herself, "I am in my element.  This is what I was born for."  And with that, she stepped toward the scent of curry wafting out of the door.

* * * * * * * *

Tess over at Life at Willow Manor  has been providing inspiration for bloggers with her photo prompts on a site called Magpie Tales.  When I saw this week's prompt, it reminded me of another image by that mastermind, Indigo Roth.  If you haven't yet met Indigo, please  go introduce yourself... you'll be glad you did!

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Rocking the Danger Cart

Back when he was in high school, Vlad was a fan of Aqua Teen Hunger Force.  I, of course, only watched it with him in order to connect to him on a deep personal level, parent to teenage child. (Not because I actually thought the antics of these three wayward anthropomorphic fast food snacks were hilariously irreverent.)

Okay, true confessions time... I was actually a fan of little Meatwad.  How can you not like a character with such a silly name.  Don't mock... I need a few guilty pleasures!

The Aqua Teens always traveled via Danger Cart:

Picture courtesy of AdultSwim

Little did I know at the time that I'd one day be rocking the Danger Cart, myself.  Yes, my daily routine at The Home For Wayward Wee Ones includes an outing in a wagon that I lovingly refer to as the Danger Cart.  (Go ahead... try to explain that reference to your co-workers.  No wonder they all think I'm weird.)

But, I ask you... wouldn't you make the same connection?

(Faces have been pixilated to protect the innocent.)

Obviously, I make them do all the hard work because I'm thoughtful like that.  Besides, everybody needs their own Meatwad to rock the Danger Cart.

Yes, I lead a very exciting life these days.  *sigh*

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Good Dog: A Magpie Tale

Looks can be deceptive.

Walking down the wooded path, she knew she was late.  The shadows grew longer, then disappeared altogether as the sun sank behind the hills.  Twilight was approaching rapidly.

She loved finding a quiet spot in the woods to sit and read.  Her mother had cautioned her against staying out too long but she had become lost in her story and now she was alone, in the dark.  While the nearly full moon provided eerier shadows, it also provided just enough light for her to find her way.  Even so, each time the wind rustled the leaves or a twig snapped beneath her feet she startled, expecting some horrible creature to lurch out at her.

Ahead of her, the man in the ominous black hoodie walked down the darkened path with his black dog.  Not the hero in her book by any means.  She froze, not knowing whether to turn back or to keep walking, whether to look down or to meet the stranger's gaze head on.

The dog reached her first, tongue lolling and tail wagging.  To still her thundering heartbeat she stopped and put her hand out for the dog to sniff.  He graced her hand with a lick of hello and then sat before her, waiting.  The black dog's master approached cautiously, as though he didn't want to disturb her moment with his dog.  He stopped a respectful distance away.

"It's getting late... be careful out there," he said in a gentle voice.  With that he moved on, keeping a wide berth.  After one more caress with his tongue, the dog followed.

Something about the man's voice warmed her and gave her confidence.  She sensed there was something heroic about him after all.  She turned as they passed and gave a smile of recognition and of good-bye.  Then, without a word, she hurried on toward the light in the window where her mother was waiting.

* * * * * * * *

Tess over at Life at Willow Manor  has been providing inspiration for bloggers with her photo prompts on a site called Magpie Tales.  Be sure to check out the other fabulous writers participating in Magpie Tales this week.  You'll be glad you did!

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