Friday, January 4, 2013


Hey All,    Those of us that have pets , know how very attached you get to them and they to you.  They in every sense become part of the family.  They will do anything for us to make us happy......from playing and doing silly things to protecting us and our homes.   They are as dedicated to us as we are to them..........they love us without conditions.
      We had a couple of different dogs when I was growing up.  The first was a German Shorthair that Dad brought home, named "Chipper".  He was already full grown and was big enough for Tommy and I to try to climb on his back and go for a ride. In the winter we would tie slices of bread to a fishing pole and dangle it in front of Chipper who was tied to our sled.  It worked pretty well and we always gave him the bread afterwards.
        Tommy and I went to Loller Middle School for 6th and 7th grades and like the rest of the kids in the neighborhood, we walked. One day when we got home from school, Chipper was gone.  Mom took him to the SPCA.  She said that he had small tumors on his face and wouldn't be around for too much longer.  We didn't notice this but didn't say anything,.........we were pretty upset.
        Standing in the kitchen was Chippers replacement.  He was a Beagle /Terrier mix named "Teddy".  He was about a year old and at first we resented him. We missed Chipper and didn't ask for this new dog..........but it wasn't very long and he was trying to get us to play with him.  He was much smaller than Chipper was and easier to wrestle around on the floor with and even win a game of  "tug of war".  Both these hounds had the greatest dispositions.  I guess that was how Chipper got his name.
        In my entry "The Plumbers Assistant", I had come to stay in the 8th Grade with my Grandparents in Glenside, for my health so to speak.  I would take the train and come home for the weekends and if Dad was around, he would take me back  It was spring and we had a lot of rain.  Like many houses we got water springing up through the concrete floor in the basement during periods of prolonged heavy rainfall. I didn't have boots so I borrowed Dads, which were to big for me but they kept my feet dry as I swept the puddled water into the sump pump hole.  Mom wanted to go into Hatboro to the convenience store and Dad was going to take her. He informed me he we would be leaving  for Glenside shortly after they got back. 
         I was still sweeping water when they returned and I could hear the argument before they came in the door.  It seems that while in a heated discussion, Dad backed into a concrete base that a parking lot light was  mounted  on.   It  put a deep crease in his bumper...........needless to say it didn't help his disposition.  I came up from the basement and needed to get into my own shoes......I knew that I needed to be quiet and invisible at times like these, so I walked through the kitchen past Dad......with my head down and my eyes on the floor.   Things happened pretty fast....   my back was suddenly slammed into the refrigerator.   Dad had me by the front of my shirt and was screaming at me for wearing his boots.  My head rocked from the left to right from the open handed blows.   I started to bring my hands up to my head as protection..........then I remembered the last time I did only enrages him more.   I forced my hands down to my sides and held them tightly against my hips as I tried to force my head as far down between my shrugged shoulders as I could.  My face and ears stung  and I had my eyes squeezed shut...........suddenly he stopped screaming and the attack ended.  The screaming was replaced with a new sound.............I opened my eyes and almost started to cry.  Teddy had Dad by his pant leg and was growling, pulling and shaking his head back and forth as hard as he could.  He had pulled Dads leg back and had him off balance.....and it was over..  He tersely told me to get my shoes and if I said one word along the way............ he would stop the Jeep and kick the piss out of me.  I looked down at my already wet crotch ..............he already did that.  I took Dad at his word and didn't utter a syllable on the drive to Glenside.  When we arrived, I opened the door and got out and paused for a second ...........then shut the door and watched him drive away.  He didn't say  a word or even turn his head to look at me. 
           It was pretty amazing............Mom left the room and a dog came to my rescue..........  I was very thankful that he did.  I loved my Dad...... and I sure wasn't going to point out the fact that he gave me permission to wear his boots before I started sweeping.  I still feel the pain inside from those days.  Dad was happy go lucky guy before he went into the Korean War as medic............when he came home he was always serious and didn't smile much.  I can only imagine the things he saw.  No excuses for this kind of behavior...........but it never stopped me from loving him............even when it felt that he didn't love me.
          Teddy died at home, in his sleep from old age.  He has a special place in my heart........for in my life, very few have come to my aid when I really needed help.  I'm sure Teddy is off chasing squirrels some where, having lots of fun.  Who knows................maybe he'll catch one.
                 Until Next Time.................God Bless.

No comments: