Monday, September 1, 2014

A Wee Bairn


A road trip to family.  Grandma and Pop-Pop.
Suburbs and leashes for We.
The crate set up- quick in your house!
Leah's away.

Pictures and stories on her return. A wee bairn.
So precious so sweet.
I'll hide under the table. When do I get to meet her?

The crate folded down and packed in the car.
Back to New Jersey so soon?
No!  quick- in the toyota we're headed to
Ari and Rima.

Two cars loaded with small human furniture,
food, a collection of plants.
And all the way talk of The Bundle.

Straining on leashes. Fly up the stairs.
Seek out the bundle.
"not now Ham. Later. Back to your house."

A tiny white bundle. Passed 'round overhead.
Cooing and smiling everyone.
Craning through bars- sniffing,
Can't steal even a glimpse.

Baby's first walk, swaddled close against Ari.
Now get the dogs.
Here Hamish. Here Nessa.
Lift Hamish high, Ari bend close
The Wee Bairn.
She smells of Heaven
and Milk.

Friday, July 18, 2014

O Horrible! Part Deux

When opportunity knocks, one must be prepared to embrace it fully, no matter the consequence.  So, recently stripped of my excellent rotting animal cologne, the arrival of a marauding skunk seemed a most fateful occurrence.  I know it is unusual for me to post back to back blogs such as these, but such an extraordinary turn of events cannot pass by unmentioned.
To think- a deliciously vile dead-thing to roll in, my patina mocked, my coat scrubbed clean, and only  a day later a wayward skunk visits us at the farm.  I could not wish for a more perfect set of circumstances.  The gods must indeed be smiling!
Such a wonderful animal a skunk, truly!  To be sure, there is some discomfort and trauma in donning the mantle of the skunk's aroma.  No matter how much one wishes to acquire its scent,  the physical moment of spraying is always a shock. Of course there is almost no way of avoiding contact with the eyes.  This is most unpleasant, but readily resolved with some vigorous eye rubbing and paw licking.   The skunk's pungent odor is unlike all others in its unique ability to linger.  No amount of bathing, scrubbing, scouring, soaping, scraping, wringing, washing, can eliminate it totally.  It will only fade over time.  Months after a spraying one may still detect the faint odor of skunk on a damp wet day.  Sublime!
Sublime indeed though most definitely lacking in subtlety.  On the heels of the rotting animal incident described the day before last, I had fully intended to seek out a more refined material to begin my new Patina.  Usually if I add odor covertly and incrementally, Leah's poor sense of smell keeps her from taking any great offense for quite some time.
But a skunk!! Who could resist it?  Please don't think any less of me. I am after all only Canine. A marauding skunk nevertheless!  It was prowling about the yard near the trash ( neatly set out for pick-up).  There was nothing to be done but give chase to it!  The thing would only rifle through the garbage and make a mess.  I pursued it, vigorously running headfirst into its mystical, ripe, oily spray.  It simply could not have been avoided.
I admit it burned my eyes something fierce!  But I am a TERRIER!  A Scotch one at that, descended of a long line of dragon-slayers, Patina wearer extraordinaire!  The burning would subside.
Unfortunately in the heat of the moment I did not think through to my Human's feelings on the matter.  I should have thought it out better after the incident the previous day regarding my lux scent of decaying rot. To the point: Leah is most displeased.  I have been bathed thrice already.  Last night I was shut in the hall until a naked Leah placed me, at arm's length, in the bathtub.  There I was vigorously scrubbed and lathered, my human in nothing but a pair of dishwashing gloves, trying to remove the skunk's oily residue from my face.  Today I received an extra special bath with Leah's de-skunking potion ( an odd mixture of peroxide/ baking soda/ dish-washing soap), and then another bath with regular shampoo.
Alas, bless the poor Skunk. Perhaps he shall inherit the earth, for though my stench is greatly diminished it lingers still!! Having lost its thickness, the aroma no longer hovers and hangs and rises from my person, but if you lean in close it will most definitely grab you!  I look forward to a morning soon when the air is humid and damp, I wander inside from my morning roll in the dew and Leah bends down to pet me, then she pulls back "oh god Hamish!  even after all this time you still smell of skunk!" Hahaha...This Patina won't be removed so readily.  I will gladly suffer the many baths of the next week in order to savor that moment when she realizes....It's still there....

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

O Horrible!

"O, horrible! O, horrible! most horrible! 
 If thou hast nature in thee, bear it not; 
Let not the royal bed of Macdonish Hamwald be 
A couch for luxury and damned cleanliness. 
But, howsoever thou pursuest this act, 
Taint not thy mind, nor let thy soul contrive 
Against thy Human aught: leave her to heaven "

O Hamlet! You know not how much your words touch my soul!  Damned human!

I have been carefully re-crafting my Patina since my bathing and shaving for the movie ( a most necessary evil in the name of the creative enterprise).  Today I found the most glorious gooey deadness to roll in.  It completed the Patina quite excellently, not only lending me the most magnificent of aromas, but coating my neck, back and collar in a beautiful black sticky glaze of odiferous, gorgeous ROT! 
I knew there was a problem almost immediately, as Leah called me to the house with the words "stop rolling in death and get over here RIGHT NOW!" 
I didn't hurry mind you, but when I finally arrived in the house I was greeted with an "Oh god Hamish!  You stink." Since this was the desired outcome I was most pleased until the statement which followed...."that's the worst thing I have ever smelled." Worst!?!?  BEST!  Best thing you have ever smelled!  There is absolutely nothing better than the thick, heavy patina of rotting animal. It is better than all other things combined. Worst thing she ever smelled...Hrumpf.
I was immediately marched to the wash-rack and tethered where I was unceremoniously stripped of my fabulous new Patina.  The whole while Leah saying "EEEEW! Oh my god Hamish that is so gross.  What is all over you? Oh no it's all over your collar. DISGUSTING!"
It cannot be helped I suppose that Leah appears to have no sense of smell whatsoever. We all have our cross to bear, and none of us can be perfect. It is tedious to be so involved with someone who has such poor taste in odors.  Creating an acceptable patina has become a real chore.  Clearly I went too extreme on this occasion.  I will have to work the more subtle route henceforth.
Below is a double self- portrait - a gesture of good will to my human. I love you in-spite of your poor taste.
Selfportrait 2

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Leah & the Real Dog

Champagne was poured.  The red- carpet was rolled out.  The tikki torches lit, paper lanterns in the trees, speeches were made. The sun set and the movie played!  Leah & the Real Dog premiered Monday night to universal acclaim.  The Forty minute short film met with thundering applause as the final credits rolled.  The verdict:  It's a smashing success, a blockbuster, a hit! "Head-spinning, a Mirthful film!" wrote Sarah Maslin Nir.
I am still processing emotions.  The intensity of the experience is still too close for me to write about it now.  I am including here several photographs from my personal portrait photographer, Dr. Mark Epstein ( also my voice in the film). You will also see the link to the newspaper article from the Hunterdon Democrat written by New York Times reporter Sarah Maslin Nir.
The movie is posted on the link, so you can see it there. Though we may very well show it again this summer.
kilt couture
my inimatble style!

cast and crew


 Here's the link to our glowing review:
Tewksbury-produced film celebrates big screen premiere!

Friday, July 4, 2014

The Premier Looms

Many of you are I am sure acutely aware of my conspicuous absence these days.  I can only stress that it is solely in the name of art that I have not been blogging lately.  The making of my film "Leah & the Real Dog" and the planning of its premier have consumed every iota of time not already devoted to sleeping and canoodling. Many hours have been spent in the production room and I am fiercely proud to say: It is a Masterpiece! If you have not been invited to the premier, please understand,  I couldn't invite everyone. If you are invited and not attending, then you are, quite simply, unworthy. This short film will change your life.  It has already changed mine!
There is a great deal of buzz surrounding the film.  Rumor has it Nessarose may get an Oscar nod.  Of course without the brilliant writing and directing of this film she could not have pulled off such an intensely emotional performance. The trailer was released to Ellen, and I fully expect to hear from her any day now.
It is difficult to speak about the film without giving too much away, so I will remain silent on this subject until after the release this Monday.
On a completely different note: Leah and I, after much discussion have agreed that the Scots have evolved to the highest attainable level of adorableness in the canine kingdom.  The Scottish Deerhound, the Scottish Terrier, the Cairn Terrier, even the Westie- these dogs and others must get credit for bringing Adorable to a new height. Borzois, Afghan Hounds, even Salukis may be more highly evolved in pure elegance, but no one possessed of any kind of sense could argue the Scottish dog's preeminence in the cute and smushy category. Our good friend Colleen suggested the Dachshund in the running, and though they are masters at performing the perfect doughnut, they lack the scruffiliciousness of the Scottish breeds.  This has to place them behind the Scottish dog in the run for smushable cuteness.  To quote the great Mike Myers- "If it's not Scottish It's Crrrrap!!!"
I expect after the premier I will have vastly more time to devote to these important philosophical matters, the preeminence of the Scottish dog being only the tip of the iceberg.  I hope to delve deep into some of the deeper matters touched upon in the film, such as the epidemic of dog-like creatures from outer space, as well as the inner-workings of the human mind and the very confusing and complex matter of Cats.  Why do they exist? Also, does cheese bring us closer to Nirvana?

I look forward to seeing everyone at the premier!  This is THE absolute IT event of the summer.  Don't miss it.

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

The Pendulum Swings

The pendulum swings.  And it has swung far and fast. The two months since I last posted have brought a roller-coaster of events. Firstly- Harvan productions accepted my screenplay immediately.  I received a personal email from Dennis Harvan himself. I quote: "I can not wait to film this amazing feature."  I have been consumed with pre-production details: costumes and props, as well as script editing.  Everything needs to be perfect.  We will begin filming as soon as weather permits and costumes are ready.  I have been instrumental in choosing the soundtrack and it is OUTSTANDING!
Secondly. Macdonwold makes great progress.
Macdonwold in training
This is of course totally to be expected under my tutelage and expert guidance.  He does not seem inclined to be destructive so we have been working on other disobediances and manipulations.  For example: he is already receiving special cheese and homemade treats ( garlic salted hot dog bits) due to his excellent work convincing his human that he is not food motivated.  HA!  a Scot...not food motivated?  hehehe. Well done Macdonwold.  I am working hard to get him over his fear of men, as it is irrational.  The male human species is both entertaining and valuable.  I am working very hard to get another one, though my efforts thus far have born no fruit.
And now we come to it- the pendulum swings again- in the midst of all my hard work on the film and Macdonwold -we were in a car wreck.  Fortunately there were no injuries other than the car and the UN-fortunate coyote who caused the whole debacle( may he rest in peace). A miracle, since as usual Leah was driving the car much too fast.  Nonetheless this was a major setback as the car then had to be repaired. To add insult to injury, Nessarose OD'd on chocolate from the trash and had to be rushed to the hospital.  All within the same 24 hours of our car accident. Nessarose hides her problem well, but she struggles with her addiction and this time she nearly forfeit her life. Truth be told it was quite terrifying.  Her constant state of denial makes her quite stoic. Her early symptoms were hard to read but I am proud to say I played a pivotal role in convincing Leah to rush her to the hospital. My overt concern over Nessarose's listless shape tipped the scales.  She was kept overnight with an IV to re-hydrate her and diagnosed with extreme gastroenteritis. Nessarose is a garbage addict. We love her anyway of course, with all of her imperfections.
 I suppose her selfishness in this instance cannot be helped, she is a slave to her disease. She did get special gourmet gastroenteritis diet food for a whole week following the incident.  This was a major bonus to myself as I was able to feign dislike of my own standard meat in order to partake in hers, and Leah, out of guilt for my suffering at the hands of Nessa's selfishness, has transitioned me almost totally over to meat with only a smattering of kibble.  Nessarose on the other hand is eating primarily kibble with only a smattering of meat. HA! She has also been subjected to crating and Leah is hypervigilante about the garbage can.  There has been absolutely no access for almost a month now.
Needless to say we have been struggling to recover from these dramatic events these several weeks. Leah's grief over Nessarose was extreme. Nessarose has received vastly more than her fair share of attentions since her near death experience.  I wanted to blog sooner but it simply was not possible until I was restored fully to my proper place as First Dog.
Things are returning to normal.  I have been adored for many nights now with both hands used for petting.  In the spirit of my soon to be world-renowned fame as an artistic film maker, writer, and all around general genius- I have begun a self-portraiture series.  These seem to be of great value after one becomes famous.  Or dead. The first installment is shown below. It is titled "Selfportrait1."


Monday, March 3, 2014

the road to Oscar ( and hopefully Oprah...Oh fine! I will do the Ellen show!)

Great progress has been made. I was adored thoroughly for most of the day.  We canoodled for hours.  I was upside down on her lap for much of the afternoon, and petted, stroked, and scratched from head to toe with BOTH her hands.  The only time she stopped was to work on my screenplay.  Of course this is totally acceptable.  The "superdog" was forced to retire to the bed in a state of dejected embarassment.  She was not adored at all today. I had BOTH hands exclusively. Furthermore, my screenplay is complete and it has been submitted to Harvan Productions for review.  I am confident that they have to put it into production.  The genius of it is so great.  There will undoubtedly be budgetary concerns, as the final screenplay includes some elaborate stunts and special effects.  But these are essential enhancements to the artistic integrity of the production.
We have assembled an excellent ensemble cast on the heels of "Harvans in Wonderland."  I can only hope they will put the same effort and care into my picture.  My biggest concern and reservation lies with my human.  Though the screenplay is genius, I fear she is the weakest link in the casting.  Except of course for Nessarose.  I have allowed Nessarose to remain in the screenplay, but it is my great hope that her scenes will end up on the editing room floor.  Although she was given a soundtrack.  I have stooped so low!
Nessarose will do her own stunts and accidents do occasionally happen...
practicing my sad puppy dog eyes.
Regardless- our little movie will certainly go viral and we will be famous as predicted.  Unfortunately it seems Oprah really has retired from talk show hosting.  Leah continues to push me to set my sights on the Ellen Show.  My feelings are mixed, though she did bring pizza to the Oscars.  I love pizza!  mmmm....cheeeesey goodness.
I am designing my own tartan.  Macdonwold and I have formed our own Scottish clan here in the wilds of New Jersey.  We will need our own tartan, particularly since we will soon be famous and appearing at such magnificent evens as the Academy Awards.  It seems fashion design is something all glamorous creatures get into eventually so I might as well start now.   We will be Clann Macdonish Hamwold. I envision a red based tartan, with some yellow and a royal kind of indigo bordering on purple running through it.  Our crest will of course be a fire breathing stag wearing a crown, and our motto " All for cheese and cheese for all!"

Monday, February 24, 2014

Dog of Steel

I am discouraged this week.  It seems Nessarose is in the midst of a new rise in popularity.  She's suddenly been deemed clever, and kind, and useful.  ( previously she has only been discussed as irritating, neurotic, and awkward.)  It even seems she is to be give the title of Superdog. Apparently she had a supporting role alongside Superman in the new 2013 version of the classic.  Then my new Scottish cousin, Macdonwold tried to run away the minute he got home, and Nessarose was called to the rescue.  Apparently she was brilliant and heroic and sensitive!  She saved the day coaxing the terrified bedraggled puppy back into the shelter of the car.  She has even taken to wearing a cape and Leah has told everyone she is from the planet Krypton. She also insists that Nessarose can fly.
Baa! Does this look like the face of a heroic super pet to you?  She's wearing my cape! My cape.
 And she is staring so awkwardly. Now that we have Supernessa, no one even wants to hear about SMOD ( the squishy muffin of doom, my superhero alter-ego). I will admit I cannot fly, or even jump very high. However I certainly could have rescued Macdonwold.  After all- I was born speaking perfect Scottie.  I also could have taught him about peeing outside in about 2 minutes.  Nessarose failed to do this properly!
Now- compare to my superhero portrait.  Notice the agressive forward lean, the noble expression, the focused look!
Long story short:  I was left alone during the Macdonwold crisis for hours!  Whilst Nessarose was given every opportunity of heroism.  I was forced to stay home and wait,  alone, isolated, and uncertain of my future. So I ate the crotch out of Leah's favorite pair of tights.  This seemed only fair.
On a more somber note.  The Doe Deer has returned. Conditions being as they are it is almost impossible to make proper patrols. I am unable to navigate well in the deep crunchy snow. It is an effort to properly mark the entire yard.  I have been exhausted and ill-rewarded for my efforts.  Nesssarose seems to be the favorite dog, though I still get more meat in my kibble.
On the bright-side, my new film, "Hamish is a Real Real Dog", has gone into pre-production. (Title subject to change.) We have Kelly on board for costume and artistic direction.  Harvan productions will be producing and handling cinematography and film editing.  We are making changes daily to the current screenplay.  Leah insists upon expanding Nessarose's role in the film. I don't see why this is at all necessary.  The whole point of doing the film is for us to meet Oprah.  Leah says Oprah no longer hosts a talk show and I should be aiming for the Ellen show.  Or even Jimmy Fallon.  I have no idea who this Falcon person is.  But I dislike raptors.  Ellen would be worthwhile, but she's not Oprah.  Leah says including Nessarose in the film will give it greater depth.  Casting has been a battle from day one as Leah and I completely disagree on many points.  She says we will never get David Bowie to sign on.  Ridiculous.  He will be honored.  I will ask him myself. Besides- if Nessarose is such a superdog why doesn't she just "wrinkle" her way over to Henry Cavill and get him to play in our picture also. I call humbug on everyone.
I intend to sulk wholeheartedly until the balance of power is properly restored. I may also pee in Leah's slippers.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

The Doe Deer

It seems my complaints of melting snow and no winter were premature, since mother nature has decided to really sock it to us.  The ground has been snow covered and the temperatures well below freezing for almost a month now. The snow is now taller than me, though it has a thick coating of ice allowing both Nessarose and myself to skid freely across the surface. I was nervous of that at first- since falling through the crusty ice is sharp and painful.  However the persistent cold seems to have set the ice like a frozen lake and we can "skate" across confidently.
Most importantly a Doe Deer has invaded the backyard. She gets in through the hole in our pool fence and has been helping herself to the shrubs along the back porch.  Needless to say this is a declaration of war. Leah and Nessarose both advocate a truce. I refuse any talk of compromise.  This Doe Deer simply must leave and never come back.  I have taken up an exhausting, unwavering vigil.  When the others run indoors out of the cold and snow I stand watch on the back porch, ready to chase this trespasser off!  I only turn indoors when summoned for food and sleep, and most necessary canoodling.  My efforts paid off as there have been no deer tracks or poo for days ( disappointing for Nessarose who seems to be a big fan of the frozen poosicles.) Unfortunately my blogging has suffered since my energies were consumed elsewhere in the midst of this crisis. I admit some slight disappointment that this Doe Deer has failed to give battle.  I can only think that my terrifying baying, and constant vigilance frightened her off. Well, I have done my duty.
Now I can turn my thoughts to more intellectual pursuits, and matters of greater consequence.  For example: framing Nessarose for destroying the bathroom garbage,  do all dogs really go to heaven?  is it best to lick one's feet clean or merely to suck them?
Ed was here to visit us again.  He feeds many more  treats then Leah, and is generally more fun to lounge about with.  Though he is not much for canoodling.  But we have excellent conversations about all manner of man-business.  He is much easier to talk to as he speaks Scotty fluently, so there is no need to translate to English.  I have tried to teach Leah my language but she finds the sound of it annoying so I have given up and accepted that I have to use English.  I know that she is very jealous when Ed and I speak in front of her, as she can't understand, so I mostly talk to Ed when she is not looking.
Progress is steady as to the arrival of my new niece/ nephew.  I suggested that they cook the thing faster, but Leah says this is not possible and I will just have to wait until August.
On a happy note my Scottish cousin MacDonwold will be arriving in less than two weeks.  He will speak my language naturally and we will certainly be good friends, as long as  he doesn't pounce on my head.  I hate it when puppies pounce on my head, and I will bite him if he does it. I don't care if he's family. I don't have to be nice to dogs that pounce on my head.
It is cozy in the house on the sofa.  Nessarose is upside down on the armchair.  I am to bed.