Tuesday, 1 April 2014

5 Comments That Yank My Leash and Spike My Blood Sugar

First, a caveat: I say plenty of things that get on other people's nerves (probably my dog's nerves, too). Listing comments that get on my own nerves in no way exonerates me from responsibility for the same capacity to irritate! It's just kinda therapeutic.

The photos are all from recent walks and serve, I hope, to offset the occasional snarkery of the text!

[Top and right feature the old Hastings Mill at the north end of Alma Street.]

OK? Let's go ...

1) Can you eat that?

As in You're diabetic; diabetics aren't supposed to eat X; blah blah blah ... (I can see the good/neutral intention behind the remark, but still ...)

Possible answers: a) Actually, I can eat whatever I like; I just have to take the right amount of insulin. b) Why do you ask? c) I could eat that slice of pecan pie with ice cream, if I wanted to bother figuring out the insulin dose & timing (a process involving advanced calculus), but I'd rather not bother, so, no, I'm not going to eat it. This time. d) Yes! Indeed I must! My blood sugar is tanking, and Coco Puffs with chocolate milk is the best remedy.




2) A dog will really tie you down.

Interestingly, this comment continued to be directed at us after we got Freddie.

Possible answers: a) Wow, I hadn't thought of that at all; thanks for letting me know. b) A dog is a big responsibility, yes; we think the benefits he brings to our lives more than compensate for the limitations. c) So, how many years 'til your kids graduate? d) Not as much as a car and mortgage did.

Puppies at Play

3) You're so lucky!

Uttered in connection with travel plans and/or the fact that Paul and I have cut back on our teaching responsibilities ...

Possible answers: a) Yes, I am very lucky to have been born in a stable, wealthy country, to stable, middle-class parents and to have the kinds of intellectual and physical characteristics that help me to thrive in this world. b) Paul and I live modestly, have no car/kids/house, and will likely be teaching one semester a year until we're 80 years old. Luck? c) Yeah, well, one of my big reasons for cutting back on teaching was the effect it has on my blood sugars (not pretty). Wanna trade? (Meee-owww!)

4) You can be/do anything you set your mind/heart to!

Often uttered in the context of motivational talks (thanks to Céline at Running on Carbs for the reminder about this one) ...

Possible answers: a) Win gold in Olympic single sculls? b) Attend the Barcelona Jazz Festival with Rafael Nadal? c) Train my dog to operate an espresso machine? d) Wean myself off insulin? e) This kind of statement isn't very realistic or, ultimately, very motivating.

5) He only acts that way because he wants you to feed him.

The "he" here is Freddie, or some other dog; "that way" refers to some form of apparent affection. (This comment was made by a dog trainer whose class I did not return to.)

Possible answers: a) Shallow dog. I'll send him back. b) When did humans get a monopoly on feelings of affection? c) He just had dinner — and left part of it in the bowl. d) I wonder if there could be an evolutionary connection between the providing of basic needs and the phenomenon we identify as love/affection — in humans and other animals. The possibility that the two phenomena are connected needn't erase or diminish the existence of the latter.

And, finally, a bonus item: "My great uncle had diabetes. He went blind then they cut off his leg." 

Answer: Gee. Thanks for sharing.

OK, 'nuff therapy!

Freddie is taking us out to celebrate our anniversary tonight (14 years!).
I intend to have dessert and coffee and contemplate my exceptional fortune.


  1. In Bélize, the tree featured in Metamorphosis is jokingly called The Gringo Tree: Always red and peeling.

    1. I would be that tree if it weren't for SPF 45 and long sleeves!

  2. Congrats to you and to Paul. 14 years - wow. And I remember when it all began. Even a little bit before it began!

    1. Thanks, Leigh! Maybe one of these years we'll follow your lead and actually get hitched. ;-)

  3. Congratulations on 14 years!
    Also I am glad you left that training class. Sounds like it might have not been the best environment.

    1. Thanks, Mark!

      Yes, that class was a doozy. I lasted only one session (and should have walked out before it ended). The instructor had all sorts of wacky things to say about dogs, but the more worrying features were the chaos of the environment and the gruff treatment of the dogs.

  4. I am so glad I found your blog.

    1. Thank you! Your own blog headings are very inviting; I look forward to reading more Coddle Creek canine expertise!


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