b Papa Dog's Blog: Shrieking For Daddy

Papa Dog's Blog

A Thing Wherein I Infrequently Write Some Stuff

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Shrieking For Daddy

Baby Dog’s new thing – one thing about babies is, there’s always a new thing – is giving me a thorough shrieking at when I get home from work. You could be excused for not recognising it as a sound of delight. It sounds kind of like the “there’s an unsnatched human” scream from the middle (1978) version of Invasion of the Body Snatchers. Of course, she’s been making off-putting shrieks of delight for ages, so that’s not really the new thing. The new thing is the volume and duration of the shriek. She holds the note like that singer in the cartoon under the misapprehension that Bugs Bunny is Luh-Luh-Leopold! You keep thinking, “Okay she has to stop now” – only it turns out, she doesn’t. She keeps on going. I’ve said it before – I said it the day she was born: my girl’s got lungs.

The homecoming greeting has been a big event in our house since I went back to work. Maybe before then, but to a lesser extent. Once I was working again, I made a point every day of alerting Baby Dog quite emphatically to my return home. She could hardly have missed the point, since Doggy Dog barks up a storm when I come back, but if she somehow failed to notice that, she would have had to take notice of the big beardy man thrusting his face into hers and crying out “Daddy’s home! Yaaaay!” My theory, in fact, is that the current Body Snatchers shriek is her approximation of my “Yaaaay!” If that’s what she thinks I sound like, I’ll have to one day apologise for subjecting her to such an alarming display.

Mama Dog has always commented on how happy Baby Dog is to see me when I come home. The other night – failed Miller’s Crossing night – Baby Dog was sitting on the lap of one of our guests when I arrived. At the sight of me, my daughter beamed and wriggled and spread out her arms. “She can hardly wait for you to pick her up!” our guest exclaimed.

It all makes me wonder how much of this ritual is unfettered emotion and how much is just learned behaviour. That is, does Baby Dog adore her dear old dad so much that she becomes a wriggling bean sidhe when she sees him walk in the door, or has she just been trained by example to behave so over the course of the past six months? Is filial love innate, or is it a form of behaviour we quickly learn is expected of us, and which we adopt as we adapt? My hope, of course, is that it’s all just simple dripping love that I shall continue to enjoy for the rest of my life. But, you know, who really knows. You know?

And in thrilling hit tracker tales: three different people have come to the faversham in the last couple of days by Googling “Lulu Rae.” Lulu Rae is the name of a chocolate shop on College Avenue. I mentioned it in passing in a post about a week ago, and linked (as I have here) to their unfinished web site. The weird thing is, that one measly little mention was enough to rate me the #2 spot on Google’s relevance meter for the phrase “Lulu Rae” (right after the unfinished Lulu Rae web site). I don’t know what people are gaining by clicking on my lame little reference to the store, but I’m going to see to it that I keep my place of prominence on that particular search. So, you heard it here first: Lulu Rae, Lulu Rae, Lulu Rae, Lulu Rae, Lulu Rae, Lulu Rae, Lulu Rae, Lulu Rae, Lulu Rae, Lulu Rae, Lulu Rae.


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