The Owner says I can go for a Walk with the Man if we Keep our Distance from Other People. She says she has to stay at home for two more days. That will make Fourteen.
You will have to lift me into the Car, I say.
Unaccountably, the Owner seems to feel that the Moral Dog can Jump into the Boot by Himself. I have evidence, she says. You have done it before, she says.
I cannot, I say. All of these days without Proper Exercise have weakened me, I say.
That is nonsense, says the Owner, you are in the Prime of Life. Besides, there is now almost no way of Lifting the Moral Dog without some kind of unwanted engagement with his Parts.
Are you saying my Bum is big? I ask.
Not your Bum, says the Owner.
How indelicate, I say.
The Owner sighs. I am saying that the Moral Dog has very few Purchase Points for Lifting, she says. Could you not Make an Effort to Jump Up?
I cannot, I say. This Car is too tall.
The Owner says it is lucky that we even have a Car, since someone tried to steal it yesterday evening.
That is hardly surprising, I say, when you just leave it outside in the Street. If the Moral Dog abandoned Squeaky Cat outside at night he would almost certainly be kidnapped and sold into slavery by morning.
Nobody would kidnap Squeaky Cat, says the Owner. He is far too Slobbery.
I was not aware that Slobberiness protected against Kidnap, I say. This may also explain why the car was not stolen. I know your end is dry but I have slobbered considerably in mine.
That is Too much Information, says the Owner. Do not inform the Man, lest he worry about Digestion of the Upholstery. In fact, the Car is alarmed.
I would also be alarmed if you left me outside all night, I say. That does not explain why the Car was not stolen.
Indeed, says the Owner, by the time the alarm sounded, it appears the Burglars had gone. I think they were dissuaded by the sign on the steering wheel.
What does the sign say? I ask. I hear that ‘Beware of the Moral Dog’ is highly effective.
It says ‘do not touch, Owner has Covid,’ says the Owner.
Wow, I say. You may have infected the Burglars. Is that even ethical? Is that not a disproportionate response to the attempted reallocation of Property by Petty Criminals almost certainly forced into impossible choices by a Mobster? After all, did not Marx say Property is Theft? We Dogs feel there is much to be said for Marx’s Philosophical Writing. Jeremy the Beagle speaks of him in Glowing Terms in the Park.
Actually it was Pierre-Joseph Proudhon, the first Anarchist, who said Property is Theft, says the Owner. Marx was Not So Sure. And, as to the Mobsters, you have watched too many Films, there are none of those in Camden. As to the Ethics of it, I have not been in the car for two weeks. The Burglars could not have caught my Covid. It was not there to catch.
Ah, I say, you employed deceit to scare off the Burglars. That is also Ethically Questionable. Immanuel Kant said one must never lie, not even if the End appears to Justify the Means.
Indeed he did, says the Owner and Immanuel Kant is often criticised for being too Rigid for exactly that reason – but I have told only truth. Suggestion is a powerful tool. I gave the Burglars some Facts, but offered no Definitive Statement. The Conclusion you imagine they imagined was entire theirs. And by the way, I don’t know if you have noticed that there appears to be a Chewy Ball in the boot.
I cannot see it, I say.
That is a shame, says the Owner, I think it is possibly under the Cushion, and of the Squeaky Kind. Of course if the Man sees such a Squeaky Ball in the Boot he may remove it lest it generate excessive Slobbering of a type which digests the Upholstery.
But I cannot get into the Boot, I say.
What a shame, says the Owner. Covid appears to entirely have sapped my strength and so… goodness me, you appear to have jumped in! That is miraculous. The Moral Dog has recovered his Strength.
It was a Marathon Effort, I say, in Exceptional Circumstances. But where is the Squeaky Ball?
Which Squeaky Ball? Asks the Owner.
The Ball that you said was in the Boot, I say. Squeaking, I say.
I think you may find that I made no such Definitive Statement, says the Owner. Suggestion is a Powerful Tool. The Moral Dog drew his own conclusions. Conclusions which proved that his Alleged Weakness was entirely Context dependent and was therefore not Weakness at All.
This is a Morally questionable approach, I say. I wish to discuss it further.
Too late, says the Owner, here is the Man. Enjoy your walk.
Perfidy, that is what it is.
Hergest the Hound
I am a dog of many thoughts.