Sunday, January 18, 2015


I wrote last year about the interesting aspect of Man being the "talking animal." Well, nothing else talks, unless you know something I don't. Maybe your neighbor's cat is talking to you, telling you to kill people. In which case, please stop reading this blog and call 911. Just tell them all about it. They can help you fulfill your mission.

My dog does not talk to me, although he is very vocal for a dog. Some dogs are nearly binary -- on or off, bark or no bark. Maybe trinary: bark or whine or nothing. Tralfaz makes a large variety of noises, including some very convincing imitations of mules, cows, monkeys, buffalo, rusty gates, and Chewbacca. And he does an excellent disgusted sigh. Sounds like someone's grumpy and demanding dad sitting back with the newspaper.

But he doesn't talk. I'm glad he doesn't talk.

For one thing, he's too cute. He has this great friendly face, reflective of his love of people and other animals. It would be terrible if dogs could be pitchmen. You'd buy everything.

"Hello, friends. It's me. The dog. Have you ever considered the advantages of a reverse mortgage?"

"Hi, everyone in TV land. Gee, you all smell great. May I take a moment to talk about the wisdom of investing in gold today?"

"Hi, friends. Dog here again. No one likes to think about life insurance. But if something happened to you, what would happen to your dog?"

Actually, what's worse is that anything that talks has the ability to lie. Small children are terrible liars, but they give it a shot. Dogs may try to be sneaky, but that's not quite the same. When Tralfaz tries to convince me he has to pee so I'll take him outside, I don't know if he's actually lying or making some connection that just seems like a normal request in the only way he can express it. If dogs could talk they would wind up lying, and we would know it, and that would make us sad. Then we wouldn't buy anything from them. So it would all be for nothing.

We like you as you are, dogs; don't go trying to talk. It's not all it's cracked up to be.

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