The Rest of the Story


Today’s guest post is by Queenie Calhoun.

I’m not one to tell my story, I usually don’t think I have much of a story to tell, but sometimes you have to set the record straight.  Not only did my little brother Bandit infer that I pushed him into the pool, he compounded things by publishing it on Mom’s blog so all the readers in the whole world-wide web would feel sorry for him. ‘Least that’s how I see it.

I didn’t push, nudge or bark him into the pool, but by his sin of omission, everyone thinks that I did. For the past week, he’s been trying to make it up to me, and I do love the little guy, but I’ve just ignored him. He’s really been trying though. He’s followed me everywhere, shared his treats, and even sniffed my breath to make sure it’s minty fresh. Still I ignored him. The ice started melting when he used his extrasensory puppy powers to persuade Mom into letting me guest post. Nice of the little booger, wasn’t it?

To give you a little background, I was born here in California. Dad and Mom saw a sign at a farm in Madera, stopped in, fell in love with me, and brought me home. She’s so cute! Mom said. Actually, Dad was shaking his head so I gave him my best soulful gaze and the deal was sealed. I still remember that two-hour ride home, how I fit inside Mom’s grey vest right next to her warm tummy, and marked the first territory I ever claimed. Mom didn’t seem proud of my accomplishment as she was wearing said vest at the time. Dad laughed and I knew I picked the right parents. Mom named me Queenie as she knew I was destined to regally rule the roost on our little piece of dirt.

Bandit came into our lives six and one half years ago. He was born on April 15, 2005 in Arkansas. How he made his way to California, I don’t know but what I do know is that life around here has never been the same.

Bandit likes to tell on me, and yet somehow make it all about him.  For example, there was the squirrel incident. Bandit started barking and yipping so loud, you’d have thought he was the second coming of Lassie. I can even hear the theme music in my mind. The parents came running as they are wont to do when the little guy barks like that. Queenie has a squirrel! Mom shrieked as Dad yelled at me to put it down. It wasn’t a tree squirrel or anything. Just a ground squirrel and you know how ground squirrels are, making holes everywhere. I was doing the world and my tummy a public service. Dad didn’t see it that way. Queenie! Drop it! Crunch, is all I had to say. I mean really, the deed was done so I might as well have finished the job. Bandit came running to share in my spoils. Quick, bring Bandit in the house before he eats some and gets sick! Queenie will be all right, she has a cast iron stomach. Dad said. And so Mom brought Bandit in and Dad took my squirrel away.

The little guy spoiled all my fun and dinner too. Dad got the shovel and there went my hard-earned spoils, which brings me to the pool and rib incident. I was dozing near the pool while Dad was barbecuing our ribs. Mom joined us and was sipping a glass of wine. I love it when Mom joins us and always try to get in her lap. Bandit gets mad and growls at me like she belongs to him only. Doesn’t matter, I’m bigger, older and wiser. Well, I guess it does matter because neither one of us gets to be in her lap when we argue about it.

Rude Awakaning Bandit wanted to make sure we got our ribs and wouldn’t settle down. He came over and woke me up. I jumped up while he was doing wild runs, telling me all about his plan to get us some ribs. He got so excited jumping around that he landed in the pool. He flew in all by himself. I didn’t lay a paw on him, I swear. But I do have to say that in all the excitement, I bumped into Dad, the plate of ribs went flying, and it was all over. It was raining ribs from heaven, yes it was. Somehow, Dad didn’t seem to think the raining ribs were heaven sent but I sure did.

Dad asked Mom to take Bandit in the house to dry him off. Dad was not too happy so I thought I’d help out. Anything on the ground is fair game in my book and those ribs sure were good. I think I broke the world rib eating record. I cleaned up that mess in no time. I could hear the commotion inside as Bandit ran around wet and wild. I could hear him cry as Dad came back outside with me, leaving him inside with Mom. I could even feel the pain Bandit must have felt over the loss of his beloved ribs. Really, I could.

I felt badly about his plight but all the guilt vanished when he published that story on the web. And, as I relay my version of events it occured to me that the little fellow really does love me. He loved me enough to let me tell my side of the story even if it meant that he might not come out in the best light. He loved me enough to question his own version of events when I became distressed with his tale that grew so tall for such a little guy. And I love him enough to forgive, knowing that nobody meant any harm and that only God saw the whole thing, making both of our versions just what they were, versions. Because, as Paul McCartney so eloquently put it, in the end, the love we take is equal to the love we make.


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