“Chomp chomp chomp, slurp slurp chomp.”
“Egad, Fido, I can’t take you anywhere!”
By now Fido was licking the pavement.
“This,” he proclaimed, “is just the best time EVER! Hey, will you look at THAT?”
Fido eyeballed the baked beans.
“FIDO!” I said, and gave him a tug on his nose leash.
It was his first-ever pig roast. It might be his last-ever, too, unless he can get a grip, and I told him as much.
“I just assumed you’d be a good dog,” I said, “and you were, mostly. Everyone, including the kids, liked you a lot. But you might want to learn some manners one of these days, before the summer is out.”
Fido assumed a hangdog look, but I knew he was faking it. He’s good at that, and I don’t mind, really. After all, it was his first pig roast.
“Overall, you were a good dog.”
“Always a good dog,” he moped. “Never a great dog.”
“Oh, stop it. If you’re looking for sympathy, you’re barking up the wrong tree.”
The tipping point, as it were, happened when I lopped a piece of pig onto my paper plate. I can’t even imagine what was going through Fido’s head at that very moment. Certainly it approached something like a Biblical Revelation.
That piece of pork flew off my plate lightning quick and there, at the other end of it, was a large red dog, feeding as if it were his Last Supper.
It was gone in no time.
Thankfully, the only human who witnessed the event was a friend. He was impressed. “Wow,” he said.
Full disclosure: Fido never gets human food. It screws him up, makes him feel bad afterward and the consequences do not make for polite conversation. And he’s good about it, really. He’ll consider a plate of whatever I’m having, but he never, ever goes for it. He’s just interested, that’s all.
Until the pig roast.
“Wow Fido, that was really something, and totally out of character for you. What was it all about?”
We were home by then, relaxing on the deck and reviewing the day.
“I don’t really know!” he said. “One minute I was just regular ol’ Fido, and the next thing I knew I’d changed into something else. It surprised me as much as it surprised you. Hey hey hey hey!”
“Well, we know one thing for sure, Fido.”
“We know that you are not Orthodox Jewish.”
Fido considered that for a half-second, then lifted his goofy ol’ face with his goofy ol’ grin, and said,
“I’m Orthodox Chewish!”