b Papa Dog's Blog: Three Paragraphs That Mention Mama Dog and Gran But Are Otherwise Unrelated

Papa Dog's Blog

A Thing Wherein I Infrequently Write Some Stuff

Monday, December 27, 2004

Three Paragraphs That Mention Mama Dog and Gran But Are Otherwise Unrelated

Mama Dog’s stepfather asked last night if Doggy Dog seemed at all resentful of the baby, if he missed getting the full attention he used to enjoy. It’s a subject we’ve thought about a lot, so we answered in maybe a little more detail than he’d been looking for, talking about how dogs observe very clear social hierarchies, and how they don’t worry much about their relative position on the pecking order so long as they and every other member of the pack knows what it is. It’s important for Baby Dog’s safety that Doggy Dog knows he’s ranked lower than she, and we think he’s gotten that idea. We feel guilty sometime about the other perks he’s missing out on because of the new addition – fewer walks generally and almost no off-leash romps since the baby arrived; diminished centre-of-attention status; even his doggie bed folded up and stashed away because there was no place to put it when we had the Cosleeper in our room. He’s since claimed a spot of real estate for it at the foot of the bed, but still. We feel some pangs about his demotion and hope it isn’t making him too miserable. Gran evinced somewhat less soul-searching on the matter: “He’s gone way down for me,” she said. “When I thought maybe I wouldn’t have a grandchild and he was the closest I’d have, grand-dog and all that, I cared more, but now…” It went unvoiced, but clearly that sentence ended “…I don’t care about him at all.” Poor old Doggy Dog.

Funny sight around the dining room table last night after Baby Dog had gone to sleep: Stepfather took an interest in poker after seeing us play a few years back. He’s only played for money with us once, but he plays online now and then and whenever we’re in Babs, we’ll play for chips. Last trip we didn’t get any cards at all in because Baby Dog was only two months old and a hand of poker seemed an unattainable luxury. It’s still tough now because Mama Dog’s usually too pooped to play, but Stepfather and I decided to have a go at some two-handed play which, while less interesting, passes the time. Mama Dog didn’t go to bed right away, and Gran took the opportunity to let the bee in her bonnet buzz a little. She wants to pass on the skill of knitting to her daughter. She hauled out a big ball or red yarn and a few needles, and started hectoring Mama to knit and purl. Mama, as blurry, cranky, and ready for sleep as Baby Dog had been, gamely followed along and soon had a viable row of stitches going. I looked up and said, “Look at this; the women are knitting and the men are playing poker.” Our family is rapidly becoming a model of traditionally-defined gender roles. Who’d have thought?

Judging from the hit tracker, not many people have been looking in over the Ho Ho weekend. Just as well – my posts have been (and will continue to be all week probably) kind of hurried and undeveloped, written on a borrowed computer with me always looking over my shoulder lest somebody walk up unexpectedly and ask what I’m writing. (Gran doesn’t know our favershams exist; Mama worries that if she did, Gran would camp out on hers, refreshing every thirty seconds, and Mama’d never have the chance to complain about her mother again.)


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