“Hey Mom! Come lookit this!” The puppy is balancing a Milkbone delicately on the tip of her nose and her eyes are crossed, staring down at it. “There’s a lady on my biscuit. Lookit!”
The dog biscuit remains balanced, though teetering. I squint, look askance at it, and the Virgin of Guadalupe pops into view. There she is, smiling benignly in bas-relief. No coloring of course, just brown crispy highlights, rather like those wood-burning sets from the fifties. I am flummoxed, gobsmacked, most decidedly surprised.
“You’re right,” I say to the puppy, words of praise not often flung in her direction. “Holy shit!” Perhaps I shouldn’t be using this particular expletive in this particular situation, but Mother Mary was always a forgiving soul, and that she should appear on a dog biscuit before my very unbelieving eyes is indeed a milagro of distinction.
The puppy is less amazed than I and she politely deposits the sacred biscuit on the seat of the nearest chair. This affords her a different view of the Virgin and she struts around the chair, peering down from all angles, proud of her new toy.
“However did you notice the picture before you wolfed the Milkbone down?” My princess has always been more than a tad greedy, and she sports the bumptious butt to prove it.
“Welllll…” She considers all possibilities, working the situation, preening for future interviews. Letterman? She’s convinced that her Madonna beats out all the other stupid pet tricks of tail-chasing and Frisbee-flipping. She places a paw aside her nose in contemplation. “Welllll… first I was thinking it might be some kinda nasty bug on my biscuit, but it isn’t. It’s a lady. What’s her name again? How come you know her? What’s her name? Gwady-who?” Since the puppy has begun surfing the web she’s developed a phenomenal buffet of visual trivia, but she remains at best a remedial reader. Much of her verbal knowledge comes from direct ingestion. Truly unfortunate for my library. There have been many incidents.
“Her name is Guadalupe. It’s Mexican. I forget the exact story, but a young boy had a vision of the Virgin Mary and her image appeared imprinted on his poncho. Very close to the image that’s on your biscuit.”
“Poncho? Did the boy eat his poncho? Is it like a biscuit? I think I’d like it, cause I like tacos and burritos and salsa. We got any? I could use a burrito, cause now I can’t eat my biscuit, ‘cause then I couldn’t sell it on Ebay. How do I do that? Can I get lots and lots of money for it?” The puppy’s face is contorted by greed. Find a virgin and make her pay!
“I really don’t know how to sell on Ebay. Maybe you could donate the proceeds to the animal shelter.” This receives an icy stare. My precious diva is many things, but generous she’s not.
The puppy hits the keyboard, and miraculously (why not, miracles seem plentiful today) logs onto Ebay. She’s now in over her depth.
“Take a picture of the lady and write about her and then the money comes. You do it. Here.” She exits the room, head regally high, allotting the boredom of specific chores to the one who scoops the poop.
Causes Mara Buck Supports
Kennebec Valley Humane Society, Amnesty International