I am playing in the Park with the Owner and an Excellent Stick when the Other Dog appears. It is the most Ridiculous Dog I have ever seen. It is Brown and White with Floppy Ears and a waggly tail.
Hello, it says. Give me that Stick.
Certainly not, I say, it is my stick.
Oh Look, says the Owner, here is a Dog just like you, Hergest. Isn’t he lovely? And she Pets the Other Dog. And the Other Dog jumps up at the Owner and Wags its tail in an extremely familiar manner. It is clearly a Dog without any kind of Modesty.
Hello, says the Other Owner to me, as I jump up at her and Wag my Tail politely, as one should. Oh look. Our Dogs are very alike. He even says Hello like My Dog does.
That is rubbish, I say. I am not nearly as Jumpy and Waggy as your Dog.
This is Hergest, says the Owner. He is a Moral Dog.
Concepts of stick Ownership represent Capitalist Hegemony, says the Other Dog. You are Oppressing me.
This is Hector, says the Other Owner. They could be Twins. Would Hergest like to be Friends?
The Other Dog is clearly not Moral, I say. If he was Moral he would not have laid claim to My Stick on the basis of a Complete Misreading of Marx. We could no more be Twins than I could be Twins with that Squirrel, I say.
Of course he would like to be Friends, says the Owner, glaring at me, wouldn’t you, Hergest?
I look at the Other Dog. Gack off, I say. Gis is Gy Gick.
Property is theft, says the Other Dog.
Gou are got a Garxist, I say, gou are gothing gore gan a Gief.
I think Hector is already Playing, says the Other Owner.
Yes, says the Owner. It is so nice when our Dogs Socialise.
Gy am got gocialising, ge is gealing gy gick, I say.
I cannot understand you, says the Owner. Let go of the stick and then your bilabial pulmonic stop consonants might be distinguishable from your nonn-sibilant fricatives.
Its gy gick gow, says the Other Dog, get go of it, Goser.
Oh look, says the Other Owner, how lovely, they are Sharing the Stick.
I pull on the Stick. The Other Dog pulls. I twist and yank. The Other dog holds on. I run around the Park. The Other Dog runs with me. We are both holding the stick. The Owners appear to find this Quite Funny. I do not.
Look what fun they are having, says the Other Owner. How lovely to see two GSPs enjoying the same stick.
Ge are got engoying ghe game gick, I say. Ge are gighting.
Gou are a greedy gapitalist, says the Other Dog, your gother gos a gamster and gour gather gelt of eldergerries.
You are an agoral oggortunist, I say, get off gy gick.
How funny, says the Other Owner, they seem to be talking to each Other. If only we knew what they were saying.
Yes, says the Owner. If only.
The Owners wander along for what seems like hours talking about Many Joys of Moral Dogs. Meanwhile, beneath the Relentless Morning Sun their own Moral Dogs are involved in a Battle for Supremacy which can only culminate in victory, or defeat.
Or a draw. The stick breaks in half.
Goser, says the Other Dog, Running Off in a positively Cowardly Fashion.
Gief, I say, Running Off to Demonstrate my Indifference.
That was such fun, says the Owner, as we head home. It must be wonderful to have met a GSP the Same Age as you. And you played so well, given that there was only One Stick. Let’s hope we will meet Hector again. tomorrow.
Sometimes the Owner has No Idea about Dogs.
Hergest the Hound
I am a dog of many thoughts.