Trained?

Growing up in India I had a love-fright relationship with dogs. (Pick your jaw up. We all grow up only at 30, and sometimes never.) These changes were not frequent, but depended on those around me, and of course on the dog itself. (No matter how much you love them, always make an informed approach, or no approach.) If there was a person in my close and constant surroundings that was extremely scared of dogs, somehow being the fool that I am, I would be scared too. Remove this person from my surroundings, and this would eventually change to my default state – I love you dog. I don’t care what flea bitten, diseased situation you come from – you must be loved.

Anyway, a question I heard a little too often (I attribute some of these occurrences to myself too), was “Is he/she trained?”.

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Who’s askin?

Now as a pet parent my instinct lies in responding with “to/for?”. Until I raised my very own bundle of crazy I never realized that maybe what the people in my land are trying to ask the dog community in general every time they stop of their members is, “Is he/she tame?”

A dog can be trained to Sit, Stay, Hug (yes, my fabulous boy knows how to Hug is parents), Roll over, Search and to Rescue. Which subset of these is the right answer to “Is he/she trained?” When is a dog considered “trained” enough for that answer to be “Yes”?

But is he/she tame?  India has a lot of stray dogs. They are much less now since awareness about Spay/Neuter and Rescue is very prevalent, and many groups are working tirelessly to increase this awareness, and to increase adoptions. So it is most likely that a dog on the street who has a human leashed to him/her is tame. He/she may or may not know any commands, in which case yes maybe some training is in order, but this dog is tame. And I think this is where the confusion of tame/trained stems from. It’s even more confusing that many strays are tame. Many strays are also “trained” meaning they know one or two commands atleast.

Is your dog child “trained”?

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Adopted, Tame, Trained, Spoiled, and Loving it!

Fun little confusing question! I have to say we humans sometimes are neither tame, nor are we trained to do anything useful. In Dwight Schrute’s words “We need a new Plague.”

 

Quirky Apple

Going through my gallery, I realised I had a few silly clicks and a theme for my next post developed!

I’m sure most people walking around the City notice these little things. Small signs that people leave behind, and interesting things that they do.

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Like request people not to defecate outside their homes.

I don’t believe I’ve ever seen such a request, or will see one again.

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This is a classic. Specially as the week wears on, commuters get tired, and I click pictures. Once I had my flash on. It was embarrasing. There was nowhere to run either.

Trains are food for great clicks!

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And Shalini will Google RoomZoom.

Politics is fun where people are real and half the town is Donald Trump’s property.

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My living, walking, beerpaws.com advertisements.

Ok, I just had to put my boys out there, because look how cute!

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Vandalized parking signs

Street cleaning in Williamsburg is just a little different.

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Window art

Fun for passers by.

Stay tuned for more clicks!

Snickers.

My bestest  friend in the whole world sent this to me on whatsapp last week.

imageShe said “This made me think of you Fatts!”.

She is a few hours ahead of me in time and so I read this when I had barely surfaced during the wee hours of my Eastern US Time. But I went back to it later and laughed uncontrollably.

If I had a dollar for the number of times we snickered unnecessarily in school, I’d have a dog rescue of my own by now, and it wouldn’t need donations. Ofcourse, no laughter is unnecessary. All laughter is good, always laugh with an open heart I say, but you know when your teacher’s trying to tell you something respectable about the Quit India Movement, or something serious, really, then put a lid on the snickering. Or don’t, if you’re me, or her. Little secret, she found Lord Curzon cute, in 8th grade. I deemed the whole observation unholy 😉 But still, we snickered.

“Truman, was a very nice man”, was something that was ok to write in your class test when asked “What was the Truman Doctrine?”. And we snickered.

There was also the pointless application of Lakme body lotion due to the sudden, unexpected bout of dryness that always, accompanied every Marathi lesson, specially if there was a new kind of Lakme on the shelves. We were deemed shameless, and soul-less, and irreligious, and hence hopeless. And we snickered.

When made to stand outside with the classroom door shut, during Marathi, because we were distracting even when punished, we snickered. To take things to a whole new level, three out of the four punished, conspired against the fourth to send her flying through the closed door, to create some sort of unnecessary, explosive, distraction from the main plot of the Marathi story that the good children were taking in; and when she flew thew the door, we snickered. (Don’t worry the door didn’t shut fully, so it didn’t hurt.)

It was also imperative to introduce our 8th grade Math teacher to the tunes of “Salmon Khan”, by running up to her and shoving an old audio cassette in her face, hoping for a small increase in the next test’s grade. Ofcourse, we snickered!

Then again, it was not abnormal, to stand up and dance to Ricky Martin’s Cup of Life that was playing in your head (“alay, alay, alay!!”) when said math teacher turned around to write on the board, and we snickered; and she turned back around because she caught sight of our very unstill shadows on the blackboard amongst geometrical shapes, and we rapidly took to our seats, and we snickered.

To expect a herd of 50 teenage girls to stop chatting, and snickering, just by your mere presence at the classroom door, is the definition of expecting too much from life. But yet they tried, they all tried, and we snickered.

Some tried harder than others, they used their words, “I am i-standing here, and i-still you are talking?”; and we were silenced, but in that silence, we snickered.

The same teacher once rescued a cat, hid it in her saree, and brought it to class (my grown up self loves her even more). We were good to the cat, but we were also thirteen, and the thought of a grown woman, our teacher sneaking in an “i-scared, hissing” cat, was incomprehensible, and we snickered.

As lead singers during 10th grade’s assembly, every effort was made to start the day’s hymn the wrong note, and every effort was made, not to snicker. The 8th graders watched us as we mis-sang the hymn, they grinned, but we didn’t snicker. It got so uncontrollable that one of us needed to walk out, to snicker.

St. Mary's 2000. yes, that's how old we are.

St. Mary’s 2000. yes, that’s how old we are.

Most of us “i-still” laugh with open hearts, but every laugh is a little stifled, unlike those unnecessary snickers. She said it so well when she said, “Fatts, I am not even trying to be an adult, but it is happening. Adult things are happening.”.

My best friend, my heart, I understand so well. But I know you are still childlike, and I am too. Just remember, to always .. snicker 😉

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Travel, Menagerie

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This is the truth about travel: It is amazing! A new place, new people,

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Tartini Square, Piran, Slovenia

new food, oh gosh the food,

A tale of two thugs.

A tale of two thugs.

it is all just.. amazing. And going to all of these places with the people you love, more amazing.

Piran, Slovenia June 2014.

Piran, Slovenia

Lake Bled, Slovenia. An island with a Church, and a Bar. Pick your faith. We decided to get engaged :)

Lake Bled, Slovenia. An island with a Church, and a Bar. Pick your faith. We decided to get engaged 🙂

I came across an article about dating someone who owns a dog. There were many truths in it, and among those was this “She truly misses him when they’re apart.”

And this one simple truth is why I really, truly dislike planning a vacation. I don’t actually dislike the vacation part. When I am in the vacation, I love the vacation as you can see, and everything that goes with it. But in the months leading up to planning and executing it, it is my worst enemy and I do not want to have anything to do with it.

I am whiny when we try and pick dates. Because all dates are bad. Because I have to be away from this.

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How about a Staycation ma?

I am whiny when we book flights, hotels, cars and whatever else. While everyone else is truly, madly, and deeply, enjoying every minute of it! And I’m a little jealous because I want to be excited about it you know? I am also a little stupid because I know I am eventually going to enjoy the vacation, and so I can stop being silly and start being excited instead of fighting the vacation!

However, my one man “Menagerie.”, prevents this. I openly admit that it is me who suffers from extreme separation anxiety, not my pup. Kahlua does sense my impending departure, but he is pretty much drama free. I blame my propensity for drama, complete with tears and sometimes background music, on my being Indian and being raised to be Bollywoody at all times.

The Menagerie daily post asks:

“Do you have animals?” Hell yeah! But please don’t call him an animal.

“What do they mean to you?”  The world! He is my everything. My constant, my child.

If no, why have you opted not to?” This question is wrong. Please change it.

So now, for the love of dog, explain to me how to actually enjoy planning a vacation!