Friday, February 25, 2011


One of the best gifts I have ever received in my life is a mouse pad. Seriously. My sister, Alexis, made it, through some computer program, and it shows Louie and Oliver in cahoots. Every damned picture brings a prick at my eyes. They were partners in crime. And, yes, every time I look at the mouse pad, images of my boy Louie swim to the forefront of my brain.

I know that no one reads this shit anymore, and that is okay. I'm fine with it. Who wants to read about a person riding a bicycle towards a cliff with no brakes? I understand why people don't read this shit anymore. I'm fine with it. So, in that case, I'll just describe what the mouse pad looks like. And...what it means to me.

It is a regular-sized mouse pad. The mouse glides easily over it.

The pictures on it are all pictures I took. Lou might have been the most-photographed dog in the history of Photography. [Oliver lacks.]

In the upper-left corner of the pad, we have an image of a little ferocious beagle, ears akimbo, south-pawing the larger dog. Lou's head is cocked to his right; he's ready to serve up a counter-punch. Ollie looks insane, like he is a killer. Great, but Lou'd have done him in if he felt like it. They were friends. They loved each other.

At the upper-right corner of the pad, there is a black-and-white photo of the dogs, hind to hind, in which I later Photoshopped in some bones. It was supposed to be something like the stand-off at the OK Corral. Lou, the bigger dog, has a smaller bone. Oliver, the beagle, has a larger bone. In the picture, Oliver is looking up at me, through the camera, seemingly saying, "Um, sir? Can we expedite the process, please?" [Oliver would never talk like that.]

Below the first picture, there is one of, simply, Louie and Oliver. Lou is all big-snouted and calm, and Oliver continues to look like a girlie-dog.

Interruption: Doggie-paws across the middle of the pad. One. Two. Three.

The next snapper, reading left to right, is of Oliver lying in the hallway and Lou being right up front, in focus. He looks non-plussed. He looks like he has the burden of carrying the little guy, his friend. In a dog's life...right? He was, to his last days/daze, a soldier.

We draw our attention from the right and focus on the left. Here, at the bottom left of the mouse pad, we can see what Louie could have done. Total and utter subjugation. They're still play-fighting, but Lou makes a point: I will, if I ever have to. His right fore paw is completely obscuring Oliver's eyes. Louie's body is dangerously close to just collapsing upon the beagle, rendering Oliver non-still. Lou loved the little guy, though. That much is obvious. Be he intervening if I were disciplining Ollie or be it if my voice were raised, Lou always--always--looked after his brother. [And me. And his mother. And his sister.]

Next picture: Lou and Ollie, in tandem, walking next to the side of the house. So what, right? Oh, no. This is key. From the moment they met, they were inseparable. One for both and both for one. Their tails are up in tandem and Oliver is daintily placing his right fore paw on terra firma. And Lou is looking at the camera as if to say, "Another, man? C'mon."

Yes, Louie. Another. Because you lived like you burned it at both ends, and I am so fucking glad that I took too many shots of you.

The final picture is just that of a bone. But, by the way the images were constructed, it looks like Lou is right above the bone, like it is his birthright. And? It is.