Friday, June 4, 2010

Well, Put Paint On My Bottom And Call Me A Mandrill!

The unthinkable has happened.

No, I haven't changed the washer on the bathroom tap that's been dripping for a month, nor have I started eating the recommended five serves of vegetables and two serves of fruit a day.

It's even more unlikely than that:  Ellen has passed Intermediate Obedience!

By a whisker, mind you.  When we reached the last exercise, the instructor said "If you don't do really well in this one, you will fail."  I think he was chosen for his confidence-building skills  (he certainly wasn't chosen for his sartorial skills - he was wearing the faded fluorescent parka that is beloved of dog-type men and women everywhere, and he had those trousers that sit all wrong, so they look like the fly might be open, and while you're trying to work it out you realise he is looking at you while you're staring at his crotch with a furrowed brow).

Anyway, we performed what I would describe as "poorly" in the final exercise, which was a two-minute "down stay":

Mr Pants:  OK, when you're ready, drop your dog and leave her.
Me:  OK.  Ellen?  Drop.........drop.................. DROP.................. DROPPPPPPPP! (Ellen drops)
Mr Pants:  Leave your dog.
Me:  Staaaay (stepping gingerly away from Ellen.  Ellen gets up and follows me.  Sits on my foot and looks at the pocket that contains my bag o'cheese) ELLEN!  DROP! (Ellen drops. Grins.  I question her intention to stay down.)
Mr Pants: Leave your dog.
Me:  Staaaay (Ellen shuffles back into a sit position.  I give what I think is a look of death, but Ellen ignores me and noisily licks her ladybits)
(Three minutes more of dropping, getting up and walking over to me, pretending to scratch her ear so she could look at a passing dog, dropping again, us both staring at the instructor and hoping to solve the Mystery of the Pants, and finally another drop.)
Mr Pants:  (looking harried and pulling his parka down over his groin) OK.  That will do.

In spite of this dreadful performance we passed with a gruff congratulations and a promise that a certificate could be collected in two weeks.  I can't help feeling we passed simply because we were the last pair, and he wanted to go home and eat shepherd's pie.  Or maybe he was just freaked out by my crotch staring.

Oh well, a pass is a pass.


  1. Congratulations. You don't think it was one of those passes where they just don't want to break up the age group do you?

  2. Possibly. But more likely to have been one of those passes where the teacher was very keen to pass Ellen on to someone else.

  3. On The Wire, both kinds of passes are called "social promotion."


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