Thursday, September 30, 2010

Ooh-ooh, witchy woman...

I saw a TV interview with some lady in Delaware who said she used to "dabble in witchcraft" but now she wants to be a U.S. Senator. M says she might get elected because her occult background makes her pretty well qualified. He doesn't see why she wants the job, though, since it's a sideways career move at best. I don't know how I feel about it. But I do like her campaign signs:

PS - If she decides to go back to being a witch, I have an ornery old black cat named Willis that I'd be willing to sell her for cheap:

Monday, September 27, 2010

Life's a beach!

Well that was a first! M and J took me to the beach for three days. A right scary place, the ocean. Or let's just say it takes some getting used to. If you've followed my blog for a while, you might recall that I'm not crazy about swimming. (This shoots a small hole in my vet's theory that I could be part Lab.) The house we stayed at was wonderful, though. In fact, the trip would have been perfect if they'd let me stay inside all weekend.

Oh, all right, I'll admit there were some things about the beach that were semi-cool. But getting my feet wet wasn't one of them.

Here's another first for your humble correspondent: After M put our trip photos on the computer, J helped me create a slide show with some of them using a neat little program called "Smilebox." I hope you enjoy it.

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow
Create your own slideshow - Powered by Smilebox
This free digital slideshow customized with Smilebox

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Let's make some toast!

"To M and J"
A poem by Buddy

Let's raise a glass to M and J,
Who forty-six years ago today
Eloped. And I'm so glad they did,
'Cuz I wound up being their canine kid.
M and J, my awesome peeps,
I love you big time . . . and for keeps.


Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Celebrity Lookalikes

As you might be aware, I watch a fair amount of TV. And it occurs to me that some of the people I see, especially on the news channels, have lookalikes on other shows. For example, I think this Senator Mitch McConnell dude bears a striking resemblance to Tooter Turtle.

I'll try to come up with other pairs of celebrity lookalikes to show you in future posts. In the meantime, if you know of any, please send them to me.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Let's pull off a scab!

This just in: a photo of my extended family--well, most of it, anyway--in Montego Bay, Jamaica, last month. From left to right, enjoying their snorkeling cruise, we have M and J's grandson Mike (my adoptive nephew), Jeannie, my sister Jenny, some old geezer with a trucker tan, my sister Bonnie, my adoptive niece Annabelle, and brother-in-law Fred. Nice job by the paparazzi, yo!

But where is Buddy, you ask? Where's the Bud Man, the one whose extended family this is? Ah . . . grab the edge of the scab there and give it a quick rip. And behold his mugshot:

This still doesn't seem fair, even if Arlo and Willis were in the slammer with me. For those new blog visitors who missed the full story, you can find it here.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

The play's the thing . . .

Speaking of blog dog (previous post) reminds me of Bob Dog. Does that name ring a bell for anyone? He was probably one of the world's great dog impersonators back in the day. (The reason I know about him is because of old TV reruns and PBS specials.) His human name was Bob Trow, and he was a regular on Mister Rogers' Neighborhood. I'll bet a hundred dollars my adoptive sisters, Bonnie and Jenny, remember him. For those who never had the pleasure, though, here's a picture of ol' Bob Dog in his prime:

Mister Rogers' TV neighborhood was also called "The Neighborhood of Make-Believe." I like making believe, as you've no doubt guessed from my Buddy Holly schtick. Pretending you're somebody or something else can be a lot of fun. And if you get bored with it you can switch to another character--or just go back to being your regular, charming self.

When it comes to pretending, humans have an advantage over dogs, because they get to use costumes and makeup. I suppose dogs can dress up, too, if they don't mind the confinement of clothing. You do sometimes see toy poodles wearing those little bitty sweaters or big macho dogs with bandannas tied around their necks. But if you're a regular reader of my blog, you know that I much prefer the au naturel look. As a result, my make-believe lives are pretty much limited to the world inside my head.

As for humans playing the part of someone else, the ones I like best fall into either of two groups: Elvis imitators or dog impersonators. For some reason I can't fathom, the former seem to outnumber the latter by a wide margin. Since I started this post talking about Bob Trow, I'll stick with his category and save the Elvis wannabes for another day.

It's really hard to find many people who want to play dogs. I don't know if it comes down to a money thing or an ego thing or what. Among dog impersonators, some of my favorites--in addition to Mr. Trow--are the ones who've played Snoopy in the stage version of You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown. Here's Jordan Stocksdale (the one on the left--duh!) doing a fine job of it in a Way Off Broadway Dinner Theater production (Frederick, Maryland):

But my all-time favorite dog impersonator, hands down, is my sister Jenny, who does a great portrayal of her big brother--me! Here she is dramatizing my former life in the woods:

I can almost hear her delivering her lines: "What's that, M and J? You want to adopt . . . little old ME? You want me to give up all this freedom and snakes and ticks and stuff for your living room? Well, I'll have to think about it. I'll let you know. Oh, and J, for breakfast tomorrow, will you be a doll and toss an extra scrambled egg into my kibble?"

 "Oh, all right. I suppose if I don't let you and M catch me, I'll never have a moment's peace. And at least going home with you will get Animal Control off my tail. I'm yours. Huggies!"

The irony is that Jenny did these impersonations years ago, when she was just a little girl and long before I was even born! And yet they're so spot on! I mean--how did she know? Does she have ESPN? (Cue the creepy music.)

Oh--before I forget--you'll recall from earlier posts that Jen is quite the comedienne. Once while she was rehearsing for this dog gig, she couldn't resist going for the cheap laugh:

Truth be told, I love me some cheap laughs!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Eeeew! Now that's just wrong!

When I first read this, I thought it said blog dog and I thought, oh, how nice, another pup who likes to write. But then I took a closer look. This, friends, is exploitation of the worst sort:

I guess I finally need these:

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Pssst! Wanna see a big ol' cooter?

Check this baby out:

What? You were expecting something else? Sorry, Googlers, this isn't one of those websites. We're referring here to the Florida cooter, Pseudemys floridana.

It's not the same one that J rescued from traffic on North Woodland Boulevard this morning as she headed to the Y for her Thursday workout. That's because after she brought it back home to show M, they were in such a rush to take the critter to its new digs at the Lake Woodruff National Wildlife Refuge, they forgot to grab the camera. But this internet stand-in is about the same size and coloration as their "rescue reptile."

Fortunately, they remembered to grab me and let me ride along with them. Unfortunately, there was a sign at the entrance that said "NO DOGS," and I felt pretty nervous as we made the long drive in. It was beautiful back in there, though--very jungle-y looking--and I wish I could have seen more of the place. But when we got to the parking lot, there was another anti-dog sign as well as one that said "THESE PREMISES ARE MONITORED BY SURVEILLANCE CAMERAS."

So I had to stay in the car while J carried Mr. Turtle to a nearby pond and turned him loose. He headed straight for the water, so as they say at the funeral home, he's in a better place now. While J made the release, M sat in the car with me, and we tried not to look too obvious to any cameras that might be pointed our way. (M said that if a wildlife officer tracked us down with an incriminating picture, he'd claim I was his mother-in-law.)

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Hair today, gone tomorrow.

Or make that, "Hair yesterday, (somewhat) gone today." Here's M in Jamaica last month doing his impression of the Wild Man of Borneo:

And here's another pic from that same snorkeling cruise, with M and some younger version of himself trying to out-shaggy each other:

Oh, the humanity! But now check out my main dude this afternoon, looking downright civilized after a visit to Moodz Salon (J's purveyor of fine hairdos):

Eat your heart out, Nick Nolte!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

C'mon, J, use your own words!

J clipped this out of yesterday's comics and left it on the table beside my couch. Is she trying to say I'm high maintenance?

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Can you see the forest for the trees?

Are you a right-brain person or a left-brain person? I'm not talking about politics, but about which hemisphere of your old pumpkin, if either, dominates your thinking and perceptions. The truth might surprise you.

Yesterday M and J went to a lecture by Dr. Camille Tessitore King, a neurobiologist and psychology professor and one of M's former Stetson University colleagues. The talk was called "Left Brain / Right Brain? A Half-brained Idea?" and Dr. King's conclusion was that it's a useful construct--and has been for well over a hundred years--but that nowadays it tends to be overdone (especially since advertisers have finally glommed onto it).

Traditionally the left brain is viewed as the logical, linear-thinking half, good at handling small details like storing your vocabularies (both regular and foreign) and solving math problems. The right side is more free-flowing--responsible for creativity (using your words effectively, for example), as well as intuition, reading emotions in people's faces, and otherwise grasping the "big picture." People whose right brains dominate tend to see the whole forest, while left-brain folks focus more on the individual trees. Also it's well known that right-eye vision and right-side motor skills are processed by the left brain, while left-eye vision and left-side body movements are the work of the right brain.

But when it comes to thinking and analyzing, the truth is that in most people's brains, neither side is more than mildly dominant, and in many brains the results are about 50-50. This is because there is a lot of cooperation between the two hemispheres by way of a bridge called the corpus callosum. Of course there are exceptions here and there, especially if someone's right or left hemisphere doesn't work well because of a stroke. There are also a lot of "split-brain" people whose corpus callosi have been surgically cut to keep bad epileptic seizures in one side from firing across and affecting the other side. These two types of patients, according to Professor King, have been the subjects of most of the research that ended up showing how the brain's hemispheres work in the first place.

To illustrate how the two halves of the brain can perceive something differently, Dr. King showed this painting by a 16th-century Italian artist named Giuseppe Arcimboldo. Nothing remarkable here--just a big bowl of fresh-picked vegetables:

But what if we turn this picture upside-down (or in fact, right-side-up, the way Arcimboldo actually intended it)?

If you still see nothing but a bowl and a bunch of veggies, your left brain is in full command of your noodle. But chances are that you also see a bearded, rosy-cheeked man in a helmet. This means you've got some right brain working for you as well. (If all you can see is the man, and no veggies at all, your right brain is definitely large and in charge.)

By the way, in case you wonder how a dog like me could care about this, let me tell you that I did some Googling and found out that canine brains--and those of other mammals--are also arranged in two hemispheres connected by a corpus callosum, and that lots of research is done to study how animals think. I'm down with that as long as they don't get carried away "creating" test subjects!

Before I wrap up this post, I want to say that I think Arcimboldo's painting of the helmeted man is cooler than the other side of the pillow! I did another Google search to see what else of his might be out there and found, for your viewing pleasure (titles added by yours truly) . . .

Ye Olde Flower Childe:

Sushi Man (ignore the sea otter above his ear):

Fruit, Veggie, and Whole-Grain Warrior:

Who the heck knows what this last one is? When I look at it in its entirety, I see a Martian with an attitude. When I focus on just the eggplant, it's a very irritated Shamu.

There are lots of short tests online to help you determine your brain's "hemispheric preference." For one interesting example, follow this link.