A dog in a man suit

23Dec05

A buddy of mine is clearly a dog in a man suit. Every sign points to it. He’s the friendliest and most loyal companion that you could ever want—he’s man’s best friend. You can even hit him, and he’ll just wag his tail at you. He’s very difficult to train, continually forgetting and having to relearn things. He even has a habit of eating people’s table scraps.

And while he’s smart in a lot of ways, no matter how many times you pretend to throw a stick, you can still trick him into chasing after it, such as the time I convinced him that guitarist Joe Satriani was legally ordered to shave his head and the time I told him he had been outed by the magazine Scientific American. Sometimes, you don’t even have to try to trick him. Talking to him can be such a frustrating exercise in point-missing that you often end up barking at him to make yourself understood. This is just the latest example:

“Guess who I saw on Conan O’Brien last night?” I told him about a certain pro bodybuilder who’d gained a measure of unexpected exposure on the show.

“Wow! Really?”

“Sort of. It was just a picture of him. They were doing a joke about what was on Clay Aiken’s Christmas list, and one item was ‘a male bodybuilder’ and they showed a picture of him in a skimpy banana hammock.”

“So Clay Aiken’s a bodybuilding fan?”

“Uh, no. they’re saying he’s a homosexual.”

“The bodybuilder?!”

“No! Clay Aiken!”

“Oh. Ha. That’s pretty good.”



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