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Friday, July 18, 2008

Quick Hits...

Dogs, Revisited

Remember a while ago I posted about the pit bulls in our neighborhood? Hey, guess what? The same little dog (Sandy) that was attacked then was attacked again! Only this time by the Rottweiler mix, Pepper-Ann. Sandy was in the doggy hospital with multiple puncture wounds and a broken jaw. Pepper's owner (who also owns one of the pit bulls that attacked little Sandy dog not too long ago) also had to have stitches in her hand and arm due to the attack.

Are they getting rid of the dogs? I mean, two attacks in two weeks, the little dog almost dead, the owner with stitches... But no. "Oh, they're just so lovable, we can't bear to get rid of them. They're like family."

No, they're like attack dogs. Sorry. Get rid of 'em before the kids get attacked (yes there are three kids living with these dogs, and many more neighborhood kids in the area).

Update: I just talked to the neighbor lady. "Oh we're going to get rid of the small dog," she told me. "The two big dogs are staying. They'd never hurt anyone, they just don't like the small dog is all." She then went on to show me the bite wounds on her arm where she'd been bitten. "The vet told me to put Pepper down, but I just can't. We'll just get rid of Dad's dog instead." (The small dog isn't hers, you see. The guy they call "Dad" lives with them. Sandy's his dog. The guy takes the little dog everywhere with him -- the two of them are true companions, inseparable. At least when the little dog isn't busy getting eaten by the big dogs...) I asked the lady what she was going to do when the big dogs attack one of the neighborhood children. "Oh, we're getting a shock collar so we can handle them better."


Work

I've cut back to part time at the print shop. I just can't afford to work there any more. If you want to know why I'm stepping back from my day job, just e-mail me and I'll explain it all to you in excruciating detail.


Garrison Keillor...


...has lost my respect. Go read THIS if you want. In short, Mr. Keillor (of "Prairie Home Companion" fame) went to Washington D.C. on Memorial Day (the day of the annual Rolling Thunder rally when hundreds of thousands of bikers, mostly veterans, go to visit the Wall to pay their respects) to visit an art gallery and got bent out of shape because there were *gasp* VETERANS there.

"Somehow a person associates Memorial Day with long moments of silence when you summon up mental images of men huddled together on LSTs and pilots revving up B-24s and infantrymen crouched behind piles of rubble steeling themselves for the next push. You don't quite see the connection between that and these fat men with ponytails on Harleys."

Well, Mr. Keillor, most of those fat men with ponytails you saw WERE the guys huddled together in a firefight, visiting Washington DC to pay their respects to their friends who died in combat. I'm sorry they got in your way as you were in DC spending Memorial Day looking at a picture.

If anyone cared about the war dead, they could go read David Halberstam's "The Coldest Winter: America and the Korean War" or Stephen Ambrose's "Citizen Soldiers: The U.S. Army from the Normandy Beaches to the Bulge to the Surrender of Germany, June 7, 1944 to May 7, 1945" or any of a hundred other books, and they would get a vision of what it was like to face death for your country, but the bikers riding in formation are more interested in being seen than in learning anything. They are grown men playing soldier, making a great hullaballoo without exposing themselves to danger...

Again, I have to say, Mr. Keillor, that most of the bikers you saw that day are not grown men playing soldier, they ARE soldiers, and they HAVE exposed themselves to danger -- because our country asked them to. I'm sure, too, that reading a couple books about "the war dead" makes you more of an authority on the subject than those who left friends on the battlefield. These men and women held up their right hand and swore an oath -- and fulfilled that oath. Whether the U.S. government used these men and women wisely is a debate for a different essay. The point is that the United States needs a military, and these people had the strength of character to fulfill that need. They deserve our respect, not your snide comments.

I'm sad. I used to listen to "Prairie Home Companion," and I've seen the show live on two different occasions, but it'll be a long time before I can listen to it again without remembering this episode. Grrr.

13 Comments:

Blogger SkylersDad said...

What a butt-head Keillor was! I lost respect for him also.

And, about the dogs, I think it's time for the police to step in before there is a killing.

3:32 PM  
Blogger Bluzlover said...

I love dogs. Maybe there is a place for dogs like these, but obviously your neighbors aren't handling them right. You are right on, they need to be removed before the little dog is killed or worse a little human.

I hadn't heard any of this from the Prairie Home guy. I don't know why he felt the need to say anything, but these statements are crazy. He should have stopped and thanked these men and women.

4:35 PM  
Blogger Falwless said...

Wow. Just... wow. What a numnut. I don't blame you for being irritated. Who gives him the right to so haughtily judge anyone else's motive and intent?

8:33 PM  
Blogger D A said...

Mr, Keillor suffers from what I refer to as the "romantization" of war. The books he mentions are among a handful that belong in the same category as some late '50s, early '60's Hollywood war movies where the "good guys" always achieve their goal and maybe someone dies but it's in this incredibly heroic way, and there's no blood.

I, as most of you probably do, have many Vets in my family. From my father, who served very briefly in the Navy (avoiding service in Vietnam when it was discovered he was color blind - though he always spoke about being ready and willing to go), to my brother who helped capture Noriega in Panama in 1989, to my grandfather who served as a crew member on a bomber in late WWII and Korea before suffering severe leg injury in a crash (I don't know the details, he never speaks in detail about his service - it's too painful for him.)

While none of these individuals have embraced the "biker lifestyle", I doubt they would fit Mr. Keillors romantic vision of a veteran either. None of them have any stories of "comrads in arms" to share.

But Mr. Keillor could learn more from them then he could from the books he mentions.

Shame on you Mr. Keillor. Maybe if you'd lowerer your suspenders and taken some time to talk to these "fat men with ponytails", you'd have a realiistic view of life instead of your Lake Wobegon.

9:27 PM  
Blogger ~:*:*:Pixie:*:*:~ said...

Just Wow. I am shocked and saddened by Keillor's rhetoric. All his creative genius could have been channeled into a positive, reallistic and ACCURATE writing. :o( Your response Chris (and D.A.) is beautiful and right on.

As for the dogs... I have to liken it to knowingly allowing a falling down drunk individual to speed through the neighborhood at will. Someone needs to take responsibility ... or call the police / animal control. Things aren't going to get better; especially now that they've tasted blood.

Hi Chris.

<3

10:33 AM  
Blogger The Lady Who Doesn't Lunch: said...

People are ridiculous about their pets. I can't believe that these dogs haven't done enough damage for the local animal control to step in and take them away.

Didn't know about Keillor - what a stupid thing to say.

10:29 AM  
Blogger katrocket said...

1. Those dog owners need to be put down.

2. Congrats on going part-time, Chris.

3. Garrison Keillor has been dead to me for over a year, thanks to some very stupid homophobic remarks. The man is mighty narrow-minded and often speaks in generalizations and stereotypes. I see he's still at it. Jerk.

8:24 AM  
Blogger pistols at dawn said...

Can we officially kill Garrison Keillor yet? A friend of mine just moved to Minnesota, and I told her, "The instant you start finding Garrison Keillor funny, we can't be friends anymore." She replied, "Who's that?" I said, "Good start."

6:53 PM  
Blogger Capt. Fogg said...

da is right. people don't stay young and handsome and romantically uniformed long after their wars are over and it's too damned bad if it makes him uncomfortable. Maybe more people need to be made uncomfortable.

9:15 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hmmmm....editing of comments...hmmmm....

11:47 PM  
Blogger Chris said...

Huh? Someone edited something?

5:17 AM  
Blogger D A said...

I didn't realize it was possible to edit comments, only to delete your own (those you've written or those made about something you've written).

By the way, is Anonymous your first name or last?

10:44 AM  
Blogger Dale said...

I'm shocked that he'd be that insensitive and ignorant. What a boob.

7:10 AM  

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