Monday, June 27, 2011

The New Dog

The New Dog
Carl looked at the customer, who looked back at him in silence.  Carl had seen stranger customers in his pet store before, but this one was a close runner for the strangest, right behind the woman who was wearing a live sloth as a hat.  His hair stuck out at peculiar angles, seemingly at random, and it was dyed a violent shade of purple.  It gave him the look of a wilted flower.  Surprisingly, the dogs who populated the store had not gone insane with barking when he entered.  Carl didn’t know what to make of that.
Carl finally decided to break the awkward silence.  “So...”, he said, “what, uh, can I do for you?”
The man stared at Carl blankly for a second, and seemed to snap to attention.  “Ah, yes.” he said.  “I would like to buy...” He paused for thought, as though searching for a word.  He finally settled on “dog.”  “I would like to buy a dog.”
“Well, what kind?” inquired Carl politely.
“There’s more then one kind?”
Carl blinked at the customer.  Several times, privately thinking that this customer most likely had multiple screws loose.    “Yes.  Easily more than seventy breeds.”
The customer (Carl had started to call him “Wiltyman” in his head) looked at Carl as though he was from Planet Strange and said “What?  Are you sure?”

Carl sighed inwardly.  “Yes, I’ve worked with dogs my whole life.  I’m sure.”
Wiltyman looked shocked.  “This,” he said, “will complicate my decision immensely.  I thought dogs only came in one form, like plastic trays.”
This time Carl sighed out loud, pinching the bridge of his nose.  “No, as you can clearly see if you look around you, sir, there is more than one breed of dog.”  
Wiltyman looked as though every principle he built his life on had been compromised in an instant.  “Well then,” he said, “I will have to put some time into thinking about this for sure.  Yes, some time indeed.”  He stood there, scratching a beard he didn’t have, suddenly pointed, and exclaimed “that one!”
Carl turned and looked at the dog he was pointing at.  “Oh, that one?  That’s rather a special kind of Dog.  You sure?” The Dog awoke, swivelling its sensor unit toward the source of the noise.
“Yes, I am sure.  That looks like the dog for me!” declared Wiltyman.  
“Alright”, said Carl wearily, “C’mere boy.”
The Dog rose to its feet, with a hissing of pistons and motors.  It went to stand beside Carl, its sensory array blinking red.  Faint whirring noises accompanied its every movement.  
“He seems friendly enough,” said Wiltyman. “What breed is he?”
“I don’t know, Pekingese, I think,” replied Carl, patting the Dog’s head with a clanking noise.  
“I’ll take him!” said Wiltyman, and paid, filled out the forms, and all that rigmarole, quick as you please.  “Come on boy!” he said triumphantly, “let’s go!”
“CONFIRMED,” said the Dog.  

Willtyman, whose name was in fact Gus, quite liked his new Dog.  It took him a bit to realize that it ate iron filings and scrap metal rather than dog food, and drank motor oil rather than water, but other than that, it was smooth sailing.  Although the first walk was very strange...

“Alright boy,” said Gus cheerfully, “are you ready for your walk?”
“THIS UNIT IS PREPARED FOR RECONNAISSANCE ACTION,” blared the Dog, through its speaker grille.  Gus couldn’t think of a good name for his new pet, so he just named it Dog.  He thought it was appropriate.  
Gus brought the Dog over to his friend Albert’s house, and knocked on his door.  “Albert!” he called, “I have a new dog!”
“I’ll be right there!  I’m just hanging up these lightbulbs to dry, give me a second!” came Albert’s shouted reply.  Ah, lightbulbs, thought Gus.  Albert was a renown electrician.  Gus could still recall his advice of “remember Gus, always keep your lightbulbs clean with a little soapy water.”  
Gus’s thoughts were interrupted by Albert opening the door, the pinstripe suit he always wore in plain view.   “Well,” he said, “that’s a fine looking dog, I must say.”
“ORGANIC PRESENCE DETECTED,” said the Dog, a telescopic eye extending from its head to examine Albert.  “PROCESSING,” it said.  The clicking of lenses could be heard.  
Albert chuckled.  “Well, and it talks too, how bout’ that.”
Albert chuckled again.  “How bout’ that.”

After some time spent walking, where the majority of the time was spent convincing the Dog that cars were not “MANNED ASSAULT VEHICLES,” Gus, Albert, and the Dog arrived at the park, where they let the Dog off the leash.  It walked around some, and eventually found a pigeon.   
“Where’d you find that dog?” queried Albert, as the Dog, completely still, stared at the pigeon.
“I bought him.  The pet store owner said he was a Pekingese.” replied Gus, watching the Dog.  
“COLLECTING SAMPLE,” said the Dog.  Lighting-quick, a grappling arm shot out of the Dog, grabbed the pigeon, and sucked it inside.  “ANALYZING,” said the Dog, and a series of crunching and grinding noises came from within its frame, and red and green lights flashed all over its body.  
Albert nodded.  “Looks like it,” he said, as the Dog ejected a thoroughly analyzed, and very dead pigeon forty feet away and into the air, and directly into the lap of a very surprised elderly lady.  
Albert looked at the Dog thoughtfully, as the elderly lady, who now had a lapful of what could only be compared to pigeon meatloaf, reacted with pitch and volume.
“Tell me,” inquired Albert, “has he gotten his shots yet?”

1 comment:

  1. Formatting is still broken, gah. Whatever. IT LOOKS GOOD IN A WORD DOCUMENT, TRUST ME