Smarty Spot

Monday, March 12, 2007

Now You're Speaking My Languages!

"His bark is worse than his bite." While that sounds like an insult, it's actually a compliment. Think about it, if I say my owner's English is better than his Swahili that's a compliment, because it shows that he speaks more than one language.

But... he doesn't. He's just another monolinguistic American. He tries to read some ancient Greek, but I never hear him speak it. I doubt I ever will. Even when he tries to sing it sounds like he's still just talking everday English... except that no one talks back, and they go running away instead.

He may not speak more than one language... But I do.

Naturally, I both bark and bite. I wouldn't say one is better than another. This common misconception is made because barking is a more common tongue whereas biting is more refined, reserved for just the proper moment. It's the "Queen's English" of the animal kingdom. A whippet of elegance needs to know just the right moment to bite: say, at the end (but not beginning) of a big race, when you've landed on the bunny; or, whenever food is kindly offered.

Specific dialects of biting include chomping, gulping, devouring, and snagging. I got in trouble the other day for nibbling on something that was left on the table, but when else would I get to practice this particular mode of speech? There's nothing worse than a dead language.

Speaking of dead languages, I also know Pig Latin. I learned this as a pup because some said that I looked like the type who could learn it...

Not sure whether to take that as a compliment or not.

Another language in my repertoire is body language. The male owner has not mastered this language, however. I try to make it very simple for him by repeating the same moves each day, hoping he will catch on, but he just has no command of this language.

For example, each morning I do this:

While I intend this to be a stretch, he takes this to be a bow. He thinks I'm prostrating myself before his ownership: that really is a stretch. I love the guy like a brother, but I'm no court jester.

Next I run outside:

This is called going hunting. He calls this going potty. It's completely embarrassing.

I try to make my wishes for breakfast crystal clear:

But in almost every case he needs to bring in an interpreter...

He and Scoche go way back, so somehow she's learned how to communicate with him. We usually don't get breakfast until she arrives, when everything is suddenly all cleared up.

I would like to publish Smarty Spot in different languages some day. Along with Body Language, Egyptian hieroglyphics would be neat and maybe Smurf.

They don't call me Miss Communication for nothing.


  • At 9:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    When I go outside to go hunting, my human asks, "Are you going to do a whippiepoo, you good girl?" How am I supposed to respond to that? And, you think you need an interpreter. Your humans are much smarter than mine.

  • At 8:47 PM, Anonymous Telly said…

    Sometimes my girl tells me that my breath is worth than my bark. I don't think that's very nice. How do you think I should respond?

  • At 4:52 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hey Sis:
    Happy Birthday! Gotta run...I have to find the cake before "she" gets it!!!


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