Monday, January 21, 2008

Apple of My Eye

© 2007 Leighann Lord

I haven’t eaten an entire apple by myself in over a year; not since I found out that Mr. Nubbins, my cranky Cocker Spaniel, loves them too.

I slice a red delicious apple every morning to have with my breakfast. The first time I cut said apple in the presence of The Mister he sat and stared at me all bright eyed as if to say, “You’re going to share that aren’t you?” I was surprised. My old dog, Scruffy, wasn’t big on fruit. If a piece of apple dropped on the floor she’d let it sit there until it rotted, or the ants came and carted it away.

The Mister is different. He doesn’t beg, per se. He’s a proud, noble, and rather aloof dog; supremely confident in his superior breeding. He sits next to me at breakfast, waiting patiently for his piece of apple. On the days when he’s impatient (he’s a busy dog, with a heavy napping schedule) he shifts positions frequently to keep himself in my peripheral vision. He's making sure he's not out of sight and mind.

I eat a piece of wheat toast and a hard boiled egg white, saving the apple for last. I quarter it, then cut a piece for The Mister. He’s a good dog, if by good you mean not completely evil; but the first time I gave him an apple slice, I came away with tooth marks on my fingers. Not hard or deep, but enough to let me know we couldn’t go on like this.

After a little training, things are better. I say, “Take it like a gentleman” and he gingerly takes the apple slice from my hand, digits never meeting the dentals.

Initially delighted at discovering his vegetarian tendencies and even encouraging it I now, of course, complain about it. I rail every morning about a grown woman not being able to enjoy a whole apple by herself in peace. My husband ignores me as he is busy slicing his golden delicious apple to share with The Mister. Apparently, a dog’s gotta have variety.

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