Sunday 4 November 2007

November 4, 2007 Smiley's Retirement

A few months ago, Katerina requested an update on how Smiley is enjoying his retirement.  I had neglected to get this done, however after all the e-mails of Crunchie's wins in the ring this weekend (GO CRUNCH), Smiley reminded me that he was getting bored with all the talk being centered on someone other than "Smiley".  The trademark Smiley yawns were being shot directly at me as I stalked the computer for more good news from California!!!  So Smiley, this is all about YOU!!!  Again!!!
Ch. North Wapiti's Guy Smiley - Smiley - Smiles - Smarty Pants - Goof Ball ... the "Guy" has many nicknames.  Regardless of how we address him, we always find ourselves saying his name with a hint of glee in our voice.  I'm not sure if it's the name or the woof, but Smiley has a way of making us laugh in the utmost respectful way.  We are never laughing at Smiley, we are laughing with him.  The boy's mood may be infectious but let's be clear - he has an agenda.  Get the humans on your side then take them for all they are worth.  The sad part is whatever we do for Smiley and trust me the list is long, we do it willingly knowing we are fueling the fire.  So here are a few Smiley stories.
Shortly after we brought Smiley home from the 2006 Fall Warm-up Weekend, he was in the house for a visit along with a few other woofs.  I was sitting in the living room and I heard Smiley's toes ticking around on the kitchen floor.  Then things got quiet before he came prancing into the living room carrying a bunch of bananas that had been on the kitchen counter.  He had his head held high as he proudly carted them around with me in pursuit.  I pretty much had to wrestle them off of him and let's just say that the bananas lost.  Ever since then, bananas go up "high" in a cupboard.
The next Smiley trick was at Halloween a month or so after the banana fiasco.  One of our neighbors had given us two small pumpkins from her garden.  Since we aren't avid pumpkin carvers, the little orange things were left in the porch on the cupboard.  One night I made the mistake of leaving the porch door open (daaaa).  Smiley disappeared for a few minutes then came flying in from the porch and stopped behind the couch (see a pattern emerging?).  I could hear heavy nasal breathing coming from the general vicinity of Smiley, so got up quickly to see if he was in distress.  Well yes, he was certainly in distress.  You see it is very hard for a Sibe to breath when he has a pumpkin the size of a football stuck in his mouth.  He had a good hold on it and when I inquired what he was up to, he looked up and pranced into the living room, again head held high, showing off his prized possession.  Well, you can't deny the guy his pride or a little fun.  The pumpkin didn't really have a purpose anyway, so for the next few weeks until Mr. Jack-O-Lantern was unrecognizable we played hide-the-pumpkin.  Each night the pumpkin had a few more holes in it - some pretty funky looking holes since Mr. Smarty Pants' canines have seen their share of wear and tear.
One last "food" story, then I'll move on.  Raw potatoes are one of Smiley's most favorite things.  We keep a bag of the little round guys in the porch pantry and EVERY night when Smiley comes in he finds it necessary to check on them.  I'm not sure if he counts them to make sure none have escaped or what the deal is, but he noses them around in their bag and if he is so inclined he might put a few teeth marks in one or two, but is ever so careful not to do enough damage that he is forbidden to ever touch the potatoes again.  I think he just plain enjoys checking on his little potato friends.  So if you are ever at our house for a meal, do enjoy the potatoes!!!
My poor siblings have endured my love of Sibes for most of my adult life.  They are polite and patient with my addiction but they don't see the dogs often enough to get to know which dog is which.  They hear the stories though ... all too often.  My sister Kathy came out to our place to stay overnight before we headed out for a "girl weekend".  I had to go to work for a few hours before we could run off, so she said she'd hold the fort until I got back.  We agreed that she could bring a couple of dogs into the house for some quality time.  I had been at work about an hour when my phone rang and it was Kathy.  She had done something weird with the t.v. and needed some help getting things back on track.  While she had me on the phone she said she had two dogs in the house and she wasn't sure which two, but one of them was sitting on the chair in the livin groom staring at her to the point that it was making her uncomfortable.  I was pretty sure I knew who the culprit was.  When I asked if he was all white with a bit of grey/black on his face and two beady brown eyes, she replied "yeah which one is that?".  I said, "his name is Smiley and apparently because you don't know his name you are not worthy of his affection".  She laughed and said "Smiley is that you?"  Apparently, he bounced off of the chair and that was that.  She later told me that the two of them had toast and jam together on the couch and watched Oprah.  PLEASE.
There are many more Smiley stories but I'll stop now.  It's hard to believe that it's been just over a year since we brought Smiley into our home.  I knew at the time that Karen's decision to let Smiley come and live with us was a great compliment but also a great responsibility.  It would be an understatement to say we are enjoying him.  We celebrated his 11th birthday this summer.  He wore a shiny silver party hat with "birthday boy" written in blue (you can see a photo on the NW main page).  He allowed a couple of photos then ripped the hat to shreds.  All the dogs enjoyed cinnamon buns and of course, Smiley got the first one.  He snatched it from my hand as I was attempting to break it into pieces.  Yes, Smiles I got the message.  You are a big boy and don't need your food cut up for you.  He is a picture of health and happiness and we look forward to many more birthday celebrations.  This Fall he is teaching Blaze and Sparky to be lead dogs.  He gives them homework every day and they have to bring him a banana if they need to suck up to the teacher (an apple would just be too mainstream for Smiles).
So Katerina, I hope you agree that it sounds like Smiley is enjoying his retirement.  Smiley has authorized me to share a couple of photos with you.  Enjoy!!!
Until next time,
Colleen Hovind

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