July 09, 2005


4 cups of coffee and almost with you people...

norman was my first dog. i got him in the summer of 93, after i graduated UT and got my first job. an internship in the heart of god's country, Wyoming. i had to rent my home from texas on the phone. i moved by ups...that's right..college furniture could all fit into small boxes, so i just shipped it door to door..

i was shocked to arrive and learn we lived two doors down from a meat processor. the night i arrived to my new home, i was disturbed to see a butcher standing outside, bloodied apron..bloodied knife, standing in front of what looked like a wyoming chainsaw massacre...hacked up animal bits everywhere and a wall of wild animal corpses hanging on hooks. welcome to the neighborhood!

the whole time we lived there norman was forever dragging home massive deer and elk rib cages and such. it was nasty, but norman became a connoisseur of wild game, so we didn't complain. we also hiked daily in the small mountain range behind our home, so norman was constantly chasing elk and deer and antelope through the forest. i think it made him feel like a big man to return home to butcher's alley and chomp down on one of those elusive beasts..

norman went through his retirement years in illinois. although he drove those poor people nuts. in texas, we buy property and we fence it in. you keep your arms and legs on that side or we shoot em off. plain and simple. not so in illinois, not where we lived at least. it was a tiny farm town and 80%, probably fence free.

so norman continued to run like he was a mountain dog. he never could relate to city dogs. he just wanted to find the nearest river and damn near drown himself.

true was born on all saints day...when we went to the car to go to the hospital it was halloween. i opened the trunk to put in my bag and norman jumped in. ready to bring home that brother, i guess.

he was a sweet dog around the kids. very mild mannered. very protective. norman was the alpha, but either he didn't know we weren't dogs or he thought he was human..

true's first word was "norman". it was a natural for him to call that dog. we all talked to norman like he was family, and i guess true knew the rest of us would never shut up. every where that boy went, so did norman. true used to say he and norman were "brudders" before alex was even on the horizon.

yesterday, we were driving by a cemetery and true asked if norman was buried there. ouch. i told him the vet said he was buried in the country, but it's not like a cemetery with a stone or anything, we can't visit there. but true says norman should be with us and norman should have a stone..something more of norman around than just pictures.. i know how he feels.

so today we're making a stone for our garden that says norman, a place between the sandbox and the slide where the boys can reflect on younger years, when it was 'dem and 'dare dog, brudders..

Posted by shoe at July 9, 2005 12:15 PM | TrackBack