Sunday, June 12, 2011

Passive One-Upmanship

On occasion, Dorothy and I will meet on our walks a yellow lab being walked by its owner. The lab is about 18 months old and although a little exuberant at times, it seems pretty well behaved, all things considered.  Dorothy is always happy to give the lab a greeting, although it isn't one of the dogs that she sees and instantly begins playing with.

Lately, however, our interactions with the lab have become a bit odd.  Dorothy and the lab seem to be engaging in a contest to see which one can be more submissive.  I'm reminded of two people being uber-polite and engaging in a kind of contest of "After you!"  "Oh, I couldn't possibly!  After you!"  "But I insist!"  Etc.

For this is what happens when Dorothy and the lab are about half a block away from each other.  They will see each other and stop.  The lab will immediately lie down on its belly, in a submissive, come hither, let's greet way.  But Dorothy, when she sees this from half a block away, won't keep walking towards the lab, but instead will lie down herself, and then roll over on her back, showing the world --and presumably the lab half a block away--her pretty pink belly.

So there the owner of the lab is, standing over a dog who is lying down on its stomach, and there I am, standing over a dog who is lying on its back.  All four of us are at a stand-still.  All four of us fools.

Dorothy, not liking to be called a fool, thank you very much.

1 comment:

Martha said...

I think Dorothy is just using that lab as an excuse to stop walking.