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Jul 03 2009

Spinster aunt adds dog to bunkhouse

Speaking of film, here’s the latest release from Spinster Studios 24-Hour Emergency Art-O-Mat, iPhone Cinema Department. It’s a dilly.

Remember how there was an adorable puppy gonna show up here at El Rancho Deluxe? Well, she showed up. A yella lab. Call her Fran. The credit for this excellent name belongs entirely to my pal Erin, who once had a cantankerous old American Eskimo named Fran, a tragically noble animal I always pretended to dislike.

Although now that I think about it, I actually did dislike that dog. She was a senile old bite machine.

77 comments

  1. Christina

    What?!! What happened?!!!

    Gah!

  2. rootlesscosmo

    It’s my advanced years, no doubt, but I keep reading the headline as “Spinster aunt adds bunk to doghouse,” which sounds like a high school shop class project.

  3. thebewilderness

    I am very glad you cannot hear what I am saying to you just now.

  4. Comrade PhysioProf

    KYOOT EXPLOSHUN! Followed by grim spookiness.

  5. BadKitty

    Cruel. Teasing us with adorable puppy videos and then NOTHING? No hint? You’re pretty fucking sadistic, Jill.

  6. MLH

    Oh, great. That’s mean. Come on, Twisty, don’t leave us hangin’ like this!

  7. Laughingrat

    OMG PUPPY OMG I WANT TO PICK HER UP AND SCHNOODLE HER WITH KISSES excuse me, I mean goddamn, I blame the motherfuckin’ patriarchy.

    No, actually, I aver that puppy-smooching and patriarchy-blaming are, in fact part of the same Truth and Beauty continuum. Puppies are awesome. In fact, every time someone smooches a puppy, a little part of the patriarchy dries up and falls off. True!

    Also, lookit Bert being all avuncular. Awww.

  8. Shelly

    Fran is a cutie pie. Great name, too. Bert, though, looks less than entirely convinced that her acquisition was a good idea.

  9. Squiggy

    What? What! What can we do to help?

  10. hero

    Now that, that, folks, is how cinema is done. She ends up happy, healthy, alive, not in love, but with all of us in love with HER. And then there’s a gripping suspense-filled non-ending. GEE-NEE-US.

    Where’s the damn Palm d’Ore when you need it?

  11. Notorious Ph.D.

    Bert looks positively dignified next to all that cuteness. Congrats on the new addition to your family.

  12. Pinko Punko

    We’ll need to see if Fran is as much of a ham as Bert. I am afraid of their critter related schemes.

  13. Jill

    Bert hates Fran, who is obnoxious. But he tolerates her graciously, because he wasn’t raised in a barn.

  14. Lauren O

    PUPPY

    puppy puppy puppy puppy puppy puppy

  15. Shopstewardess

    Darling puppy, Bert as elder statesman and Karen Carpenter, all at the same time.

    Oh my ears and whiskers.

  16. BMS

    The Carpenters?!?!?!?

    LOLOLOLOL*snort*

  17. elm

    Fran is full of puppy awesome. She’ll wear Bert down, you’ll see.

  18. Tata

    My icy heart had almost melted before the words portending doom – DOOM! Then my heart iced up again nicely.

  19. blondie

    “Don’t stop believin’ Hold on to that feeeeeelin’ Don’t stop”

  20. schatze

    Tragedy?

    She fell in a hole dug by Bert?
    She fell victim to anorexia?
    She never forgave you for that ear worm?

    I think Bert likes his new toy.

  21. Frog Princess

    Please don’t let Bert introduce Fran to his pointy friend, the spiny pig.

  22. Kate Dino

    Doggy.

  23. Medbh

    Snorggles on Fran!
    Plenty of adult dogs have nerves worn thin by puppies.
    Once she grows up and into her gait, they’ll be fast friends.
    I’m convinced that the male-female dynamic works among dogs better than with us humans.

  24. tinfoil hattie

    Wow. Your house. How cool. I mean – what an adorable puppy! That was the point of the video, right.

  25. Pinko Punko

    Did Fran pee on something? The ending here was only the second most unsettling ending I have seen in the last 24 hours, having just watched the very spooky The Innocents. As a puppy, Smokey Dog seemed to have a pillow activated pee response, and after a 5 year break, decided to regress and assassinate some helpless and carefree pillows.

    That Kongish bone you have I think is the one thing that Pugsley (our mystery mix) has not chewed through, so A+ to that. I see you also have the ubiquitous hedgehog, and that is always beloved.

    I don’t know if you have the gigantor Swedish corporo-beast Ikea in your environs, but I have to say that their stuffed animals are beloved by our little guys and they are extremely well made and they lack things like googly eyes and squeakers that demand obliteration, thus they tend to last and I enjoy the fact that they don’t feel beholden to rigid color schemes.

  26. Cycles

    Now THAT is how you do a heartwarming puppy crap video.

    It is nothing like the following hilariously creepy commercial, which I must compulsively link to here, because, hey, “puppies, puppies!”

  27. Erzebeth

    Awww! She’s so adorable!

  28. Citizen Taqueau

    Tragedy? Don’t tell me: someone snuck the Disney Channel into her view and now she wants a bunch of princess crap.

  29. SoJo

    Ack! Now I’m anxious.

  30. meerkat

    My guess is the tragedy was that the puppy developed poor body image or something due to that strangely proportioned giraffe.

  31. Roger D. Parish

    Do you have any trouble with wildlife coming in through that rather large doggy-door? It looks big enough for a human bean!

  32. Jill

    I am obliged to reveal that the next scene had to be deleted because it was too unnerving. Pee-pee! In the house! Fortunately it was on the cheap gray Home Depot remnant carpet purchased specifically (instead of the nice rug I really wanted) against the certainty of puppy pee. I have slippery concrete floors, and dogs really appreciate a carpeted play area, but apparently when they are 7 weeks old they also like to chew’em up and puke on’em and stuff.

    Thank you, TFHattie, fo complimenting the bunkhouse. It is was over 4 years in the making. That’s 2 years-and-a half longer than it took to build the Empire State Building. Needless to say, I am no longer on speaking terms with my builder.

    @Roger D. Parish: I have big dogs, so I need a big doggie door, but we all know that it’s just a matter of time until a skunk or a wolverine breaks in. I’ve squeezed through it myself.

    My next challenge is puppy-proofing the mass of computer cables under my desk. Due to some architecturally-motivated lunacy, my lab has no door. It’s completely missing the crucial fourth wall needed to prevent puppy incursions. I didn’t quite think that one through 4 years ago when the bunkhouse was still on the drawing board.

  33. Gnatalby

    I am jealous of Fran’s hedgehog toy. (Sinister Foreshadowing) It SHALL be mine!

  34. speedbudget

    I’m impressed by the siding (is that copper?) and the overall shape of the bunkhouse. Plus, the doors and floors…

    *looks at her recently purchased short-sale “gem”* sigh.

  35. She-cago

    Yeah, Bert looked pretty unimpressed. Congratulations on your new cute puppy! Loved the soundtrack, spesh those seagulls. Haha- in rattlesnake county no less.

  36. ElizaN

    Fran has to get lots of practice destroying toys so when it’s time to take on the patriarchy she’ll tear it to shreds and pee on the tattered remains. Go Fran!

  37. birkwearingblamer

    Fran is a little fire cracker! She’s going to need a lot of romps on the back 40. Fran is cute, and Bert is downright handsome. Pats on the belly to each poochie!

  38. Comrade PhysioProf

    I am obliged to reveal that the next scene had to be deleted because it was too unnerving. Pee-pee! In the house!

    TINKLE OF DOOM!

  39. Pinko Punko

    I would have laughed so hard at the pee scene because I am assuming the camera technique would have gone from more steady cam to ultra hand-held and possible with some director’s commentary bleeding into the soundtrack. At least it wasn’t Bert treating Fran like a stuffed toy. That would have been scarring.

    The best part is when they look at you with the innocent look when they let the urine fly.

  40. Betsy

    I just had to put my kitty to sleep. This was just what I needed to see. Wishing you and Fran many happy times together.

  41. Frumious B.

    Zippy, of course, has already forgotten what he was like as a puppy. Aren’t pets grand? The peeing and the puking and the chewing. It’s heartwarming. If you don’t have a solution in mind for your wires, I recommend the stuff they sell at Autozone for wrapping wires in your engine. I don’t know what it’s called, but it’s a tube with a spiral slit – like a telephone cord, but rigid rather than floppy. It comes in different diameters.

  42. slythwolf

    She looks exactly like my friend’s new puppy Daphne. But with bigger paws. She’s going to be enormous!

    Bert totally has that look on his face like, “I didn’t know she was coming to this party.” But he soldiers on. One must be civil, after all.

  43. cypress

    My name is Frances. My family called me Fran until I rebelled against this in 1975. My friend Teri had an American Eskimo for many years. I was honoured that she named the dog after me, until I figured out that meant she could enjoy saying, ‘No, Frances, no.’ ‘Stop that, Frances.’

  44. jael

    i make no claim to knowing how effective this is (people seem to love them or hate them), but it should stop skunks, if not wolverines.

    ttp://www.amazon.com/PetSafe-Electronic-Smart-Door/dp/B0016H9G88/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top

  45. jezebella

    Perhaps you can ask a parent friend for a used baby-gate for that open lab door-with-no-door. I wouldn’t recommend visiting Babies R Us to purchase one unless you’re craving a blown lobe.

  46. Compcat

    You might have better luck using a pet gate. I’ve seen lab puppies eat stainless steel, computer cords don’t have a chance.

  47. larkspur

    Ooh, Fran! I long to snorgle her. And the name is great for many reasons, one of which is that “Frannie” is the name of Senator Franken’s life-comrade (aka spouse) and while I don’t know too much about her, I think she’s adorable and I might love her.

    Also, I was just wandering through the incomparable stacks here at IBTP/HWNC and rediscovered your March 2009 post on Maypearl, soccer balls, and the joys of operant conditioning. That was a damn good post. Are brand new teeny crazy baby pups impervious to operant conditioning until they are x weeks old, or can you start right away? Or do you start right away even though they are impervious?

    Furthermore, I predict Fran will win Bert over and they will be a dynamic duo while awake, and snugglebunnies when asleep.

  48. The Hedonistic Pleasureseeker

    SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE! PUPPY! Made me think of this:

    http://i48.photobucket.com/albums/f204/hedonisticpleasureseeker/animals/LOL/LOL-circle-of-life-giraffes.jpg

  49. BMS

    Frumious B said:

    I recommend the stuff they sell at Autozone for wrapping wires in your engine. I don’t know what it’s called, but it’s a tube with a spiral slit – like a telephone cord, but rigid rather than floppy. It comes in different diameters.

    Yes – it’s called spiral wrap.

    Great stuff.

  50. BMS

    Jill,

    If you have not already done so, may I suggest acquiring actual printed-on-paper catalogues both from Grainger and McMaster-Carr.

    They are real page-turners. That is, if you geek out on tools and parts and safety gear and stuff.

  51. tinfoil hattie

    It is was over 4 years in the making.

    Well, sign me up for the first Blamer Slumber Party, because I am swooning with envy, here.

  52. Sophie

    Alive, happy, healthy but I reckon she’s totally in love with Bert, thus fulfilling the movie stereotype of young female in love with older male. I don’t blame her though since Bert is extremely handsome.

  53. Antoinette Niebieszczanski

    Heartwarming Puppy Story:
    My dog Penny was adopted from a shelter about 120 miles south of where I live. She was not spayed when I adopted her; in fact, she was preggers. Six weeks after she came to live with me, she spawned a batch of eight adorable puppies on my living room sofa. I did not know she was enceint when I adopted her so this was a total shocking surprise. The pee-stains were too numerous to count.

    Two were adopted by a work pal with a large yard, dog-loving wife and kids. Five went to a rescue lady whose adoption standards are higher than mine. I kept one. I think Mamma Dog is still peeved with me for not getting rid of all of them.

  54. Antoinette Niebieszczanski

    P.S. Betsy, I’m sorry for your loss. May flights of angels sing your kitty to her/his rest.

    P.P.S. My cousin had a yella lab pup who gnawed the sofa. His name was Gunnar, but we called him Destructo-Dog.

  55. arfeuse

    Well! I never thought I’d see the word “snugglebunnies” here. Excellent. Love the video. My own pupster, a delightful yellow lab/greyhound/collie mix (but then where do her enormous pointy ears come from?!) has now stopped peeing on the rugs at the age of 16 months. Most of the time. Definitely, whenever anyone smooches a puppy a little part of the patriarchy dies. Loving the new guidelines for commenters too. Blame!

  56. Jill

    “Are brand new teeny crazy baby pups impervious to operant conditioning until they are x weeks old, or can you start right away? Or do you start right away even though they are impervious?”

    It seems that they are impervious, mostly, but right now Fran is in training anyway. I hand-feed her every morsel of kibble. She doesn’t get the kibble until she looks up at me instead of at the bowl of kibble. Down the road, in order to get fed, she will have to sit, lie down, come when I call, etc, but at 7 weeks she has the attention span of a gnat, so I’m happy just to get some eye contact when I say her name.

    This hand-feeding also establishes me as the dominant enforcer. She already terrorizes Bert, and I can tell from the defiant glint in her eye that I’m next on her list. So I gotta stay on top of that shit by any means necessary.

    Fran’s “breeder” — a term I use loosely since, although Fran’s parents are extremely beautiful, well-bred dogs, the litter was a mistake — informed me that I absolutely shouldn’t use food-reward training, and gave me the name of his gun-dog trainer. No, thanks. The breeder guy keeps shock collars on his dogs 24/7, obviously on the advice of this gun-dog asshole. The breeder guy is a hunter, of course, which is why he has Labradors of the field-dog variety. A pleasant enough guy with whom to chat about retrievers for 15 minutes, but I wouldn’t want to spend the winter with him. He drives around his neighborhood in a camouflage golf cart.

    And now I gotta go pile up some cinder blocks at this one spot in the fence before Fran realizes she can fit through the gap.

  57. Betsy

    Antoinette, thanks.

    Odd little coincidence: her name was Frances.

  58. charlotte

    “He drives around his neighborhood in a camouflage golf cart.”

    Pardon me while I wipe the coffee out of my keyboard …

    Widdel Frannie-puppy is, of course, too cute for words! Congrats!

  59. ChelseaWantsOut

    Adorable. Also, nice manipulation of the audience’s emotions. Good job, I give it a B+. Could have used more effects.

  60. Larkspur

    Oh, Jill, your little gnat is gonna be one fine dog. And Bert will be her big brother. This means that when Fran digs the hole that you, in an alternate universe, might have fallen into, with less than highlarious results, Bert will either (a) fill the hole back in, or (b) save you from stepping into the hole in an event that will be replayed and/or re-enacted in a fabulous slo-mo rescue that will be the subject of epic songs and tales for damn ever.

  61. TwissB

    How sweetly tactful of the environmentalists in the crowd to ignore those three enormous air conditioners alongside the Twisty Dream Bunkhouse.

  62. Solniger

    i keep coming bck to this video and then looking at pictures of my puppy, whom I am unfrtunately parted from at the moment. Puppy cuteness is one of those powerful forces of nature I am helpless against.

  63. Gertrude Strine

    quoth Jill

    This hand-feeding also establishes me as the dominant enforcer.

    @TwissB:The fans appear to also be very accepting of the inconsistency of dominance theory as applied by a master blamer to her treatment of other species ::big grin::
    A bit of operant conditioning of commenters has paid off nicely. /gentle dig in the ribs.

  64. Tata

    Perhaps Gertrude Strine has never been to court because her dog bit the letter carrier.

  65. Jill

    “How sweetly tactful of the environmentalists in the crowd to ignore those three enormous air conditioners alongside the Twisty Dream Bunkhouse.”

    Oh yes, it’s absolutely wacky to install air conditioning in a house in the middle of central fucking Texas, but I went and did it just the same. I run all three of them incessantly, set at 64 degrees F, so I can wear wool sweaters all summer. When I go on vacation I set them at 60!

  66. BMS

    Hey! We wear wool sweaters here in Vegas, too! All summer! I’m even wearing wool underwear b/c we set the A/C so low!

  67. ivyleaves

    How sweetly tactful of the environmentalists in the crowd to ignore those three enormous air conditioners alongside the Twisty Dream Bunkhouse.

    Not having air conditioning there would be comparable to not having any heating in Alaska. Please.

  68. Agasaya

    Don’t all of you know that environmentalists consider death by heat stroke to be a good solution for overpopulation and energy conservation needs? Where is your patriotism?

  69. BMS

    Oops – I forgot about the earpops.

  70. Pinko Punko

    I kind of dream about some solar panels to run the AC more neutrally in our big move to the T-state, but they just don’t seem to be very popular around there. I’d prefer some sort of an “this is how much it costs and they’ll be here tomorrow” dealio.

    Also, the McMaster-Carr- I’m glad I don’t have those tendencies, because I’d be looking at fuses all day. All the live long day.

    I also think that doing the opposite of what a random breeder says is the way to go. What I did think was useful was slowly weaning the food reward from some activities, so you will eventually have responsiveness in the absence of treats. Sadly with our little dudes, they can awesomely restrain themselves when it comes to dinner- even the “look away” can be done by one- they are complete rascals otherwise. P-man hates the uniform of the USPS, and he came that way from the rescue shelter, while Smokey Dog loves UPS trucks because our driver has treats, but love means the desire to chase after and board said truck if it happens to stop regardless of other traffication. Pug pancake anyone?

  71. Larkspur

    I knew a Jack Russell terrier once who found himself in an unpleasant living situation (he’d been gotten as a gift for the young son – you know, one of those “We’re so sorry about the divorce” pups – and the young son was unfortunately unwilling to seek any solace whatsoever in the pup’s company, preferring to smack it instead) and he went shopping for a new home. This little terrier’s determination was so fierce that he befriended the postal carrier. He’d come out with cuteness firing on all cylinders, and pretty soon the postal carrier was letting the JRT ride along for a few blocks, and eventually the JRT’s mom wondered if the postal carrier wanted to purchase the JRT. But my friend, the postal carrier (a) does not like to spend money and (b) had a feeling about the situation. Sure enough, within a few weeks, mom gave the little terrier away to my friend.

    Now, years later, this JRT is a relatively healthy 16. Doesn’t see so well, and walks stiffly, but loves loves loves his home, and the warm grass in the backyard, and will still catch the scent of the emus next door and shuffle over to the fence and bark at them.

    This is a happy ending. Yay! (Years ago, by the way, they got a second re-homed JRT, so both of the little old men are happy and content.)

  72. Pinko Punko

    Lark- that is awesome.

  73. rootlesscosmo

    @PinkoPunko:
    I kind of dream about some solar panels to run the AC more neutrally in our big move to the T-state, but they just don’t seem to be very popular around there.

    Depending on where you’re moving to, there may be some local government rebate program that will lower the cost of the panels. And in some cities there’s an outfit called One Block Off the Grid that forms buyer groups to negotiate discounts from solar installers. They can also help estimate roughly how long it will take until your savings repay the startup cost; it still won’t be cheap but it’s worth looking into.

  74. Pinko Punko

    I’m not moving to hippieville commune so I expect more of the likes of “the homeowner’s association does not permit unsightly, environmentally friendly modifications to one’s home” to which I will respond “I bid you good day, sir!” in my Bobby Hill voice. Definitely gonna try to do it, though. It seems like it would make sense with the sun beating down all day doing nothing but baking centipedes to plump up to enormous sizes, etc.

  75. Jezebella

    Dude, even the yuppies out in the Austin burbs are into solar power and drive hybrids.

  76. rootlesscosmo

    @PinkoPunko:

    I expect more of the likes of “the homeowner’s association does not permit unsightly, environmentally friendly modifications to one’s home” to which I will respond “I bid you good day, sir!” in my Bobby Hill voice.

    It would be interesting to find out whether a court would be willing to enforce those association rules when it can be argued they’re contrary to public policy. Homeowner’s associations have tremendous legal clout–the courts don’t like to make decisions that could cost millions of voters money–but they have lost a few, and usually on something like public policy grounds, after (of course) years and years of expensive, exhausting appeals. This is not repeat not legal advice, just idle dipshit speculation.

  77. Pinko Punko

    Texas legislature had a bill that passed one house but not the other this year to specifically ban homeowners associations from preventing solar installation on homes. They had some other tax breaks and possibly some subsidy money. I think they dropped the ball. What happens when the governor’s hair melts??

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