A dog-eat-dog world / Un mundo donde perro come pero

La versión en español está después de la versión en inglés.

IN AN EPISODE OF THE American television series “Modern Family” (we were only briefly fans; don’t get me started), Gloria, Colombian and speaking English as a second language, says: “It’s a doggy dog world” instead of “It’s a dog-eat-dog world.” I saw a dog on the beach yesterday and that’s all it took to make me think of it. I’ve included the clip below so you’ll understand.

I spoke with The Kid Brother Tuesday. As I always do, I asked if he had received any mail in the previous week. I send him a postcard every week and my sister-from-another-mother, Susan (in Oregon), sent him a number of cards and letters — although she has never even met The Kid Brother, which gives you an idea of the kindness of Susan. The mail has been slow, to say the least.

Anyway, in response to my question, The Kid Brother said, “I got that postcard.”

“Which postcard?”

“You know!”

“From me?”

“No!”

“From Susan?”

“That’s right.”

He doesn’t say proper names (except accidentally) and never when speaking to someone directly. San Geraldo is known as The Big Guy (which, in essence, has become his proper name). Our Mother the Dowager Duchess was “The Old Lady” or “Granny” or simply “Her.” When he talked about me with The Duchess, he might refer to me as “Your Big Son.”

But back to postcards. After we talked about how nice it was of Susan to think of him, I told him I had to buy more postcards; I had run out. His comment: “And get good ones this time!”

I guess my scenic postcards form the Costa del Sol aren’t cutting it. I managed to find six new postcards that I think will suit him. Also, I shopped online and put together a care package for him: pretzels, granola bars, breakfast cereal, cashews, and more. I tried to get input before placing my order. “Hey, Chuck, what kind of cereal do you eat?”

“Any kind.”

“Do you like Froot Loops?”

“No Froot Loops.”

“Corn Flakes?”

“No Corn Flakes.”

“Rice Krispies?”

“No.”

“Special K?”

“Special K’s good.”

“You like those breakfast bars, too, don’t you?”

“Yeah, those are good.”

“What flavours do you like?”

“All flavours.”

I knew for a fact he didn’t like blueberry. “Blueberry?” I asked.

“No. I hate blueberry!”

“What about strawberry?”

“Not strawberry!”

Well, that was helpful (not). The box will be delivered Saturday. I’m sure he’ll tell me what I got wrong when I phone him again next week. Talking to Gloria from Colombia would have been easier.

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EN UN EPISODIO DE LA serie de televisión estadounidense “Modern Family” (sólo fuimos fanáticos brevemente; no me hablen) Gloria, colombiana y que habla inglés como segundo idioma, dice: “Es un mundo de perritos y perros” en lugar de “Es un mundo donde perros come perros”. NOTA: La expresión en inglés “Es un mundo donde perros come perros” significa que las personas harán lo que sea necesario para tener éxito, incluso si eso significa dañar a los demás. Gloria dice: “¿¡¿Quien quiere vivir en un mundo donde un perro come otro perro?!?” Ayer vi un perro en la playa y eso fue todo lo que hice para recordarlo. He incluido el clip a continuación para que lo entiendas. Lo siento porque es solamente en inglés.

Otra cosa sobre Gloria:
Llamó a la secretaria de su marido y le dijo que le pidiera una caja de baby cheeses [quesos pequeños] … excepto que sonaba como si dijera Baby Jesus [bebé Jesús].

Hablé con El Hermanito el martes. Como siempre hago, le pregunté si había recibido algún correo la semana anterior. Le envío una postal todas las semanas y mi hermana-de-otra-madre, Susan (en Oregón), le envió varias tarjetas y cartas, aunque ni siquiera conoció a El Hermanito — lo que te da una idea de la amabilidad de Susan. El correo ha sido lento, por decir lo menos.

De todos modos, en respuesta a mi pregunta, The Kid Brother dijo: “Recibí esa postal”.

“¿Qué postal?”

“¡Ya sabes!”

“¿De mi parte?”

“¡No!”

“¿De Susan?”

“Así es.”

No dice nombres propios (excepto accidentalmente). San Geraldo es conocido como The Big Guy [El Hombre Grande], que, en esencia, se ha convertido en su nombre propio. Nuestra Madre la Duquesa Viuda era The Old Lady [la anciana] o Granny [abuelita] o simplemente Her [Ella]. Cuando hablaba de mí con La Duquesa, podría referirse a mí como Your Big Son [tu gran hijo].

Pero volvamos a las postales. Después de hablar sobre lo agradable que era Susan al pensar en él, le dije que tenía que comprar más postales; me había quedado sin. Su comentario: “¡Y consigue buenos esta vez!”

Supongo que mis postales escénicas de la Costa del Sol no sirven. Me las arreglé para encontrar seis postales nuevas que creo que le irán bien. Además, compré en línea y preparé un paquete de atención para él: Pretzels, barras de granola, cereales para el desayuno, anacardos, y más. Traté de obtener información antes de realizar mi pedido.

“Oye, Chuck, ¿qué tipo de cereal comes?”

“Cualquier tipo.”

“¿Te gusta Froot Loops?”

“Sin Froot Loops”.

“¿Corn Flakes?” “Sin Corn Flakes”.

¿Rice Krispies?”

“No”.

¿Special K?

Special K es bueno”.

A ti también te gustan esas barras de desayuno, ¿no?

Sí, esos son buenos”.

¿Qué sabores te gustan?

Todos los sabores”.

Sabía a ciencia cierta que no le gustaba el arándano. “¿Arándano?” yo pregunté.

“No. ¡Odio los arándanos!”

“¿Qué hay de la fresa?”

“¡No fresa!”

Bueno, eso fue útil (no). La caja se entregará el sábado. Estoy seguro de que me dirá en qué me equivoqué cuando lo llame de nuevo la semana que viene. Hablar con Gloria de Colombia habría sido más fácil.

I assumed the boy and the dog were together. They weren’t. He didn’t even notice when the dog kicked sand on him.
Supuse que el niño y el perro estaban juntos. No lo estaban. Ni siquiera se dio cuenta cuando el perro le pateó arena.
• Isabel said that while she cleaned the kitchen today, she felt like she was being watched. She turned around and saw this. Time for treats?
• Isabel dijo que mientras limpiaba la cocina hoy, sintió que la estaban observando. Se dio la vuelta y vio esto. ¿Hora de los aperitivos?

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Two of the new postcards for The Kid Brother.
Dos de los postales nuevos para El Hermanito.

Shadow Minions / Minions (Secuaces) de las Sombras

La versión en español está después de la versión en ingles.

I KNEW WHEN I WOKE up and decided to go back to sleep at 7 this morning that I’d regret it. The next time would be late and to the sounds of the cats. Moose doesn’t like when I sleep in. For Dudo, it’s simply getting close to his treat time (you know, the treats they’re supposed to be served at 2 in the afternoon).

So around 9:40 I awoke to Moose’s yowls from the foot of the bed. Dudo sat at the door giving me the death stare. I also knew if I went back to sleep I’d wake up too late to go for my morning walk on the beach. First, the day trippers (or as a childhood friend who lived on the beach used to call them, “the down-for-the-dayers”) would be arriving making it less pleasant for a quiet walk. Second, the sun would be fully up. It’s been hot in recent days. Yesterday hit about 36C (96F).

So, at 10:30 — after giving the cats their treats so Moose would shut up and Dudo would stop staring — instead of walking on the beach, I stood on the terrace in my shadow world.

I love what I discover in the shadows.

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SABÍA CUANDO DESPERTÉ Y DECIDÍ a dormir a las 7 de esta mañana que me arrepentiría. La próxima vez sería tarde y al sonido de los gatos. A Moose no le gusta cuando duermo. Para Dudo, simplemente se está acercando a su tiempo de golosinas (ya sabes, los dulces que se supone que deben servirse a las 2 de la tarde).

Así que alrededor de las 9:40 me desperté con los aullidos de Moose al pie de la cama. Dudo se sentó en la puerta dándome la mirada de muerte. También sabía que si volvía a dormir me levantaría demasiado tarde para ir a caminar por la playa por la mañana. Primero, los excursionistas de un día llegarían haciendo que sea menos agradable para una caminata tranquila. En segundo lugar, el sol estaría completamente arriba. Ha hecho calor en los últimos días. Ayer golpeó alrededor de 36C (96F).

Entonces, a las 10:30 — después de darles a los gatos sus golosinas para que Moose se callara y Dudo dejara de mirar — en lugar de caminar por la playa, me paré en la terraza en mi mundo de sombras.

Amo lo que descubro en las sombras.

The Heat Is On

The weekend was supposed to be filled with sunshine. Maybe this is what “filled with sunshine” looks like in England or Wales. But the Costa del Sol is the Coast of the Sun, and this weekend did not live up to the name. We had perhaps a half hour of undisguised sunshine today. But it’s once again a mix of clouds and sun. And that might be alright somewhere else, but we feel the chill. Besides, the high today has only been around 17C (63F). (I know, I know: I’m playing the world’s smallest violin.)

Dudo doesn’t like the cold (yes, it’s all relative) and insists we turn on a space heater just for him. The minute he hears the click of the switch, he’s there with his face in the works. His position progresses as he and the space heater warm up.


(Click the images to turn up the heat.)

After coffee this morning, I saw a little poodle who apparently doesn’t much like the cold either. He was very chic. I wouldn’t mind having that outfit; I think my tail might look quite good in it.

Leave it to San Geraldo to find the best way to overcome these cold, wintery days. He’s preparing his annual batch of Jamaican Black Cake (click here for last year’s post and the recipe). Even if all the alcohol doesn’t warm us up, it will at least make us think we’re warm.

WHAT HAS, SO FAR, GONE INTO THE MIX.

“Tell me can you feel it…”

Dowager Duchess’s Dog

My Mother The Dowager Duchess was not an animal lover. Not by any stretch of the imagination. When she was a little girl, her mother got a cat to fend off any rat/mouse problem in their tenement apartment. My mother told me that one day, when she was around 9 years old, the cat jumped onto her lap and she sat and petted it for a while.

I said, “Wow. I can’t imagine you doing that.”

She said. “It was disgusting. I finally felt so sick that I pushed the thing off.”

My mother couldn’t understand how we allowed our California cats, Dobie and Maynard, to sit on the furniture. They weren’t allowed on tables or counters, but my mother found it just as bad that they were allowed on sofas and chairs.

Once, when my mother was visiting us in Santa Barbara, our long-haired, gentle, friendly cat, Dobie, walked by her chair. She reached down and stroked him absently before lifting her hand away in disgust.

I said, “How can you be like that? He feels like a fur coat! You love fur coats.”

“Well,” she said, “Fur coats don’t breathe!”

DD’s Dog
The Dowager Duchess did have her own “pet dog” for more than 25 years.

She had created him from yarn, felt, buttons, and cardboard. She gave him a red leather collar with a gold buckle. Even he had to sit on the floor.

So, while we were cleaning out the apartment, I allowed the old boy to sit wherever he wanted.

MY MOTHER LOVED THIS COAT SO MUCH SHE KEPT IT FOR 68 YEARS.
(BUT I NEVER ONCE SAW IT ON THE SOFA).

Dog Pee?

There’s a restaurant nearby that has great food and service. It’s less than a 10-minute walk and the atmosphere is great.

The men’s room is well-maintained (that matters to some people), but I find the inside of the toilet lid to be very peculiar — and a bit confusing.

WAS I SUPPOSED TO AIM FOR THE DOG’S MOUTH?
(THE COLOR OF THAT TONGUE MAKES ME THINK SO.)