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January 2, 2008

gerretYou lookin' at me?

by Gerret

gerret in the slammer

Okay, I'm not gonna lie to y'all. Yes, I spent some time in the county lockup. I ain't proud of it, but I ain't gonna pretend it didn't happen. Why? If you read the files it says I was caught wandering down the highway without a license. You can believe that if you want. I got nuttin' to say on the subject. That was then. This is now.

Stump and Tweet showed up and bailed me out back around Christmas. They cool. So here I am. Everyone asks, "What are you, anyway?" like it's any of their beeswax. I'm one hundred percent dog. Deal with it. When you're in the slammer the fact that you're a registered purebred TerrShepPitBaDoodle... well, let's just say you don't brag about it.

What else is there to tell you. I'm about eight years old in dog years. The brain trust around here has decided that I was born on the 4th of July. Whatever. It was supposedly a famous date for something, but from now on, it's gonna be the day the Gerret was born. Just remember to send presents.

February 4, 2008

gerretOver the River and Through the Woods

by Gerret

Vet visit

So Chigger warned me that this day was coming. She said, "If you are ever in the car and it crosses the river and turns left, then you might as well kiss your butt good-bye." And sure enough, like a regular fool today I hopped right in the car and away we went. Across the river and left. And there it was. The dog hospital.

Well, they put me up on a cold table and they poked and prodded and looked in my mouth and my ears and offered me some of the worst-tasting treats I've yet to come across. (Apparently they're supposed to be healthy, but if they're healthy, how can they call them treats?)

But I soon learned that everything up until that point was just a ruse; all the sweet talk, the petting, the complements.

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Yep. Just when they've got me to thinking that maybe Chigger was making a mountain out of a molehill, this woman snuck up and stuck me with about a 3-inch long needle (I mean I'm a tough guy but that's about two feet in dog inches) that set me to howling and barking and sitting and standing and rolling over and jumping through hoops all at once. Dang that hurt.

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And little did I know that we hadn't even gotten to the "kiss your butt good-bye" part yet. And no, I don't want to talk about it. And oh yeah, I give those stupid doctor dog treats one gerret.

Doctor Dog Treats: 1 Gerret

August 18, 2008

gerretAnd the livin' is easy

by Gerret

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Fo shizzle my nizzle, that Michael Felps dude don't have a clue what to do when he gets near a swimming pool in the summer time. You don't see The Gerret thrashing through the water, am I right? Ain't a gold medal in the world that tastes as good as some left over hamburger from the ol' barbecue grill. There'll be time enough for swimming after I'm too old to seriously scavenge the paper plates. When folks invites The Gerret over for a pool party, they expects no less. Piece out.

December 23, 2008

gerretWooster (or Worcester?) the Rooster

by Gerret

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Okay, so we got this new rooster named Wooster (or Worcester?) hanging around. He's still just a kid, and so young you'd have to get real up-close-and-personal to actually determine for yourself if he was a guy or a girl. But for some reason he's soooo important. You know how I know? Because he comes with his very own admonition. It goes something like this, "Ger-RET! Stop chasing the rooster!" There's often a couple of other words in front of "Gerret" that are repeated in front of "rooster" and that seem to be references to some human belief system that can provoke cosmic retribution, but they don't translate into dog so I ignore them.

In fact, at first I ignored the entire admonition because they never said "THE Gerret" so I assumed they were talking to some other Gerret. But when I politely inquired, "Are you talking to moi?" the answer was most demonstratively in the affirmative.

So that's where it stands right now. I chase, they admonish, Wooster (or Worcester?) runs like a chicken. I'm thinking that if I hold out they'll change their minds, because hey, it's hard to teach an old dog new tricks, right? Which segues nicely into the real theme of my post. The Gerret is officially post-puppytude! I'm now the old dog that doesn't have to learn new tricks! It's been pretty much seven dog years ago that Stump and Tweet came to the county lock-up, posted my bail and sprung me from the joint. (Yes, "Roscoe" was my prison name, but I was nobody's bitch. And I'll be getting to that "German Shepherd/Spaniel mix" stuff soon.)

And there ain't no way they're takin' me back. Now I got a warm place to sleep and one square a day. So who knows, maybe The Gerret will learn not to chase roosters. Just maybe. Cause I like it here. (But then I also like chickens. Fried chickens, barbeque chickens, roasted chickens, broiled chickens, boiled chickens, broasted chickens, original recipe chickens, stir-fried chicken, popcorn chickens, chicken tartar, chicken sushi, chicken nuggets, chicken casserole, chicken salad, chicken-fried steak and all those various wild animals that taste like chicken. Chicken aspic, not so much.)

March 19, 2009

gerretBeing and Nothingness and Fleas: Part 1

by Gerret

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The Gerret hasn't been writing much lately. I been going through one of those existential dark-night-a-the-soul things. Been listening to a lot of Nietzsche, Camus, Sartre, Snoopy et al. on audio books. Not much help. With the exception of Snoopy they all seem more concerned with human existence, and we all know how that turns out.

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I was thinking it might be my mid-life crisis, but Chigger just snorted and said, "Keep going on like that and it'll be an end-of-life crisis for your sorry butt. It ain't a mid-life crisis you little turd, it's about a sixteenth-of-a-life crisis and that don't count for nothing." Then she farted one of those really bad old-dog farts. Gross.

So okay, maybe I'm just having some teen angst. Or maybe it's heartworms. But hey, at least I used to get just a little respect around here.

I mean look at The Gerret in that photo at the top - happy, relaxed and way cooler than doofus Maggie sitting next to me. That was last summer, when I pwn'd Maggie and she was basically my size. I ran, she followed. I barked, she cowered. I barfed, she licked it up.

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Now look at this picture from just recently. It's like the doofus has been on DGH or something. It's a freak show. It's just not natural how big she is.

[Maggie: "To paraphrase Norman Desmond, 'I AM big. It's The Gerret that got small.'"]

How can I tolerate this humiliation? She eats my lunch. She drinks my milkshake. She knocks me over in front of guests. (And she still licks up my barf.) I even heard Chigger refer to us "Kip and Lafawndah" the other day.

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Kip and LaFawndah!
I mean when did Chigger ever sit through Napoleon Dynamite? She's like 86 in dog years. She's blind in one eye, she don't hear so good and she let's those terrible old-dog farts. And she's disrespecting me with Napoleon Dynamite references? Next thing you know she'll be writing "all your base are belong to us" in the mashed potatoes. Sheesh.

To be continued

December 20, 2009

gerretA Corny Copious Collection of Christmas Clips

by Gerret

gerretchristmas.jpg

So just when you think The Gerret is never coming back, well here I am! Chillin' in my Christmas crib, celebrating the end of my 14th dog year in residence and marking the close of the second human year of this, my carelessly casual but occasionally compelling blog.

So for your collective Christmas creature comfort I've crafted a customized and comprehensively creative cinematic experience containing a congregation of local characters. I call it: "A Corny Copious Collection of Christmas Clips."

Oh, BTW, it snowed here yesterday. Not a common calamity.

August 20, 2010

gerretYou be the judge

by Gerret

calendar-gerret.jpg

Just read that the label "free range" doesn't mean what you might think. Whatever. Around here it means chickens go where they want when they want and there are certain restrictions on dogs following them at high speeds. The Gerret considers this unnecessary regulation. I'm arguing that we replace "free range" with "affordable range" just as a way to reduce the deficit around here.

But I ramble.

In case you weren't aware (I'm talking to you, Maggie), there's a universe out there bigger than Frog Pond Farm. It's called Alamance County. It's HUGE! And they have something called a humane society, which sounds like it's about humans, but it's really about animals and the people they care for.

Around here we rely on the Humane Society of Alamance County to keep track of the passage of time, and in order to meet that responsibility they issue a calendar every year. And that calendar features 12 of the hottest adopted/rescued animals in all of Alamance County. Why 12? I dunno. Ask them.

Anyway, this year we entered yours truly, The Gerret, in the contest to appear in the 2011 HSAC calendar. And then, as an afterthought and in order to avoid lots of jealousy and bitterness, we also entered Maggie, Slippers and Sophie. Personally, I look at me, I look at them, I look at me, I look at them, I look at me... and well let's just say I was pretty confident.

But this probably wouldn't be worth writing about if it just turned out that The Gerret got what he deserved.

When the announcement arrived we learned that the HSAC had selected Sophie - SOPHIE - (heck we call her "Soapie") to appear in their la-de-da calendar. I'm stunned.

I can't believe that Sophie would be the choice in a popular election. And so I turn to you, the citizens of the world. Please vote on which of the four of us you would have included in the calendar. To cast your vote, write the name of your first choice [in order below: THE GERRET, Maggie, Slippers, sophie] on a dollar bill and mail it to P.O. Box 68, 27340. Don't worry. I'll get it. And I can count.

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December 16, 2010

gerretMerry Merry and Happy Happy

by Gerret

Guarding The Yurt

You know, sometimes my wiki leaks. Just sayin'.

Here I am guarding the art. What with the global rise in terrorism, the miserable economy and all the deer in these parts trying to hide from hunters, I've made it my job to make sure nothing gets in the way of Stump being able to afford dog food. He sells the art, he buys the dog food. It's as simple as that. So The Gerret is guarding the art. You should buy some. I can cut you a side deal.

Lane Watson took that photo. Genius! Caught my good side. Ha. Like The Gerret has a bad side.

Anyway, here now it's cold and snowing and the sun goes down before I've hardly had a good stretch. That can mean only one thing. It's the end of the world.

So to celebrate I've summarized another year with my annual Christmas movie to wish you all the best. It features birds and ducks and gooses and chickens and cats and terrorist squirrels, plus I make Maggie say "uncle" and as a special treat, superb crooning from yours truly. Enjoy!

P.S. - The soundtrack music is courtesy the generous Kevin MacLeod. Many thanks.

June 16, 2011

gerretThe Hazards of Duke

by Gerret

gerretdukesign.jpg

Yes, dear friends, yours truly, The Gerret, got accepted at Duke University. At least for today. And not just because I'm smart, but because they wanted to test just how smart I really am. Little did they know.

I was invited to participate in a study being done by the Duke Canine Cognition Center, run by Professor Brian Hare. I jumped at the chance because I remember hearing Dr. Hare's name on the Animal Channel one time. Rumor has it he's almost as smart as some dogs I know. He thinks that by studying dogs humans will "gain a window into the mind of animals as well as the evolution of our own species." It could happen.

But not today.

In retrospect, the problem was in the premise. "The majority of problems we present to dogs are very similar to those presented to young human children..." said the printout. I mean excuse me?! Young human children? Ever been around a young human child? You would waste The Gerret's intellect on child's play?

So what started out as mild amusement soon turned into a gripping battle of wills. And by the time it was all over, The Gerret had crushed the competition.

But I jump ahead.

While I didn't meet Dr. Hare, I did get to interact with several of his well-trained, loyal assistants. I believe their names were Courtnea and Mona, but I don't hear so well so corrections appreciated.

gerretdukesmile.jpg


Here's the scene of the throwdown. Note that humans use lots of color tape to mark locations because they can't smell very well.

Mona started the problem solving by placing a small treat in each of two different bowls of different colors (yellow and black). I'm supposed to wait until the bowls are placed on the floor, then run over and eat a treat out of each bowl. The idea was that I'd learn to look for treats in the bowls. The problem for me was that the treats sucked.

So I said to myself, I can't keep doing this for those store-bought pieces of cardboard. How will I train these folks to provide better treats? I hit on a plan. About the third time they put treats in the bowls, I just sat there. I didn't move to either bowl. After repeating this behavior several times, I noted a learning response in the humans. Stump, who was in the room observing, offered Mona some ham jerky treats he opined might be more effective.

So they tried it again with the ham jerky. And in an effort to reward their growth and reinforce their behavior, I obediently went to each bowl several times in a row and retrieved the treat.

So having taught them how to upgrade a treat, I decided to see if I could train them into an even more complex behavior.

I quit going after the ham jerky treats in the bowls. Stone cold. When Mona put treats in the bowl, and Stump released me, I just went over and sat by the door.

Stalemate.

Mona was thwarted. She brought in Courtnea to consult. Courtnea left and returned with an unopened can of Vienna Sausages. Human Food! I considered this a major cognitive breakthrough, and rewarded it by visiting each bowl several times and retrieving the sausage treats.

To be honest, I was overjoyed by the amount of training I'd accomplished in such a short period of time. I'd gone from cheap dog treats, to expensive dog treats to human food in maybe three-and-a-half dog hours. But I decided that now was not the time to stop with such valuable research. So the next time they put Vienna Sausages in the bowls, I just moved to another part of the room and lay down. No coaxing, no entreaties, no treat-flashing could make me budge.

The tension was palpable.

Finally, I witnessed the greatest breakthrough up till that point. Courtnea said, "If Gerret won't come to the treats, we'll bring the treats to Gerret." Hallelujah!

So Courtnea sits down in front of me with her two bowls and her Vienna Sausage and creates a treat-game where I don't even need to get up. She was practically sticking the sausage in my mouth. Since I was on a roll, I reinforced her behavior a couple of times and then returned to a state of boredom.

I probably should have stopped there, but it was obvious the staff was not tired yet so what the heck. After a bit of discussion Courtnea and Mona decided to abandon the treat-based research and see what they might learn using toys. Of course they didn't have any real toys. No sticks, no bones, no cats. But I was willing to play along.

So I'm still stretched out on the floor and Courtnea puts a blue rubber bone-sorta-thing on the floor and walks away to see if I'm interested or afraid of it. I walk over, check it out, lay next to it. No big deal. Then she puts a green toy on the floor. Again, I walk over, check it out, lay next to it. No big deal. Then she puts a yellow toy on the floor. I'm like, "been there, done that, no reward" and don't move.

Another crisis for Duke crew.

That's when Courtnea pulls out the heavy ammo. It's a remote-controlled squirrel-bear robot thing that runs around the floor and makes me get up and move. I checked it out, but it didn't smell like a squirrel or a cat or mouse or a mole or anything else I could chase, eat, kill, or intimidate, so I lay back down and started to go to sleep.

Apparently at that point they put down two toys at once to see which one I would gravitate to, but I was lost in some dream involving Coco and puppy kindergarten and ignored the whole thing. From a training standpoint, it was tough love time. I responded to nothing. My eyes drooped. I yawned.

gerretdukesleep.jpg

Here I am dozing off with a weird animatronic squirrel/bear on the left and a pink rubber thing on the right.

And VOILA!

Next thing I knew, Mona and Courtnea were kneeling next to me, having abandoned all attempts to test my behavior and instead were both petting my belly while I lay on my back with my feet in the air.

I had achieved the Holy Grail of human training and I'd accomplished it in less than seven dog hours. I will be writing up my findings in the Journal of Human Cognition Research later this year.

July 4, 2011

gerretBorn on the 4th of July

by Gerret

gerretnodogs.jpg

Yep. The Gerret was born on the Fourth of July. This is only my fourth party, but it calculates out to 35 dog years, so I don't want any of you Gen-Y folk trying to pull rank.

And Happy Birthday to the good ol' US of A! It is now 1190 dog-years old. Not bad for a failed experiment in corporations-are-people-too democracy.

So anyway, since I'm talking about me, and talking about the USA, and just happened to get photographed making a political statement the other day (see above), I'd like to request that once you get that whole Civil Rights thing settled, and that Gay thing straightened out and those rich folks relieved of all taxation, can dogs be next?

August 29, 2011

gerretHow I single-handedly scared off Hurricane Irene

by Gerret

gerretandirene.jpg

So last weekend The Gerret collided with Hurricane Irene and I'm guessing you know who won. I knew you did.

Anyways, Stump documented the whole thing over on Bourbon, Dogs and Art (click here), even if he did downplay my role in saving pretty much everything he holds sacred. But that's okay. I'm a dog. This is my job. To protect, and serve, and run in circles with crazed abandon until even hurricanes decide it might just be safer to tiptoe past quietly and move on down the road.

P.S. - Maggie helped.

September 15, 2011

gerretSwirlin' on the Beach

by Gerret

gerretsunrise.jpg

Well, The Gerret learned two things last weekend. First, I never want to do anything that requires a life jacket, and second, I never want to do anything that requires a parachute.

And that's not weird.

I Googled me and sure enough it said I was a land mammal, emphasis on the "land." That's "LAND" mammal. It doesn't say anything about water and nothing about air except when it comes to drinking and breathing which I can do just fine with all four feet resting on dirt.

You see, Stump and Tweet tricked me and Maggie into the car and hauled us off to a couple of places called Nags Head and Kitty Hawk. What a bummer. One place was all about drowning, and the other was about jumping up and not coming down. This isn't what dogs are paid to do.

There we met up with Irene, Girlfriend, Sassie, Andage, Chap and Bodee.

Andage was all about surfing, which is apparently some variation on taking a big flat stick out into the world's largest water bowl, jumping on top of it for a while and then falling over. If I did that they'd take me to the vet.

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We did a lot of this at sunrise for obvious reasons. Who'd want to get caught trying to find a gnarly tubular something-or-other in a giant, over-seasoned water bowl? Plus Stump and Tweet kept picking up our turds and putting 'em in plastic bags. Gross! What are they saving 'em for, Christmas? How weird is that? And they complain about dog breath.

maggiesunrise.jpglynngirlfriend.jpgmaggiegerretsunrise.jpg

So on the left that's Maggie at sunrise, then Bodee with Girlfriend and Maggie watching Andage with his giant flat stick, and finally The Gerret trying to educate Maggie about riptides.

Speaking of which, Maggie drank the water. Yours truly did not. Now she's cross-eyed. What a putz. With her weight problem she should be avoiding salt big time.

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This is me and Maggie with our new housemate Irene. She showed up at our place right around the same time as Hurricane Irene, so we all call her Irene. Stump says she's a foster dog. I don't know who the Fosters are, but I wish they'd pick up their dog because she's cramping my style. You do the math. Pork chop leftovers divided by two dogs vs. pork chop leftovers divided by three dogs. I rest my case.

irene.jpg

The problem is Stump and Tweet and Andage can't say enough good things about Irene, so if you really care about The Gerret you'll adopt this dog NOW. Or I'm gonna start sending out resumes.

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As for Kitty Hawk, that was even weirder. People sitting on sticks and jumping into the air and not coming down in a timely manner. Sheesh. I know you're with me on this one. Plus it isn't even in Kitty Hawk, it's in Kill Devil Hills. And what is a kitty hawk anyway? Could we get a few around our place? We got kitties.

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December 23, 2011

gerretYes, I'm Finally Famous

by Gerret

gerretpostcardblog.jpg

So yes, that's me, The Gerret, on the front of a greeting card and soon to be on T-shirts as well. I just can't imagine a better holiday present for all you out there. So Merry Happy and Happy Merry and see y'all next year!

About About Me

This page contains an archive of all entries posted to Gerret Swirled in the About Me category. They are listed from oldest to newest.

Doggedly dogging the dogs is the next category.

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