Seeing and Skiing life as A Dog
Time does just have a tendency to go by without so much as a passing glance.
We begin to notice a flake or two of gray in our hair, a pound of two on the scale, and less ability to make excuses for dumb behavior.
Sure, when you are in college its easy to say you stayed up all night drinking or playing video games or hooking up…exploring the boundries of your physical limits, but, as you age you no longer have this as a salient answer to your bosses query into your bullshit that day.
When you are in your 30’s you can’t tell you boss, “Bro! serious, I met this chick and she was totally into me and we did like 100 shots and then we went to her place with her roommate and got awesome! High Five Bro!”
That type of thing gets you fired, it does not get you a high five.
Because as time does go on we are expected to do things in a responsible manner, go to bed at a reasonable hour, ease off the hooch, maybe find someone who wants to spend time with your janky ass and make a life for yourself. Within this peculiar life search for what is appropriate, years go by and you fall out a touch a bit with your friends, you neglect your bitchin idea of fixing up an old Jeep and mudding, you shelve you big plans for a rock band…you start to take a bit more measured approach to life.
Unfortunatly within that paradigm you also lose a bit of what made you who you are, who you were and you look in the mirror one day and go “WHOA!, who is this square bastard!
This evening, outside the satalitte CRB office, we were taking our dog for a walk, nothing major, just stretching the legs, going to the mailbox, letting the pooch take a dump in the neighbors yard, and having a beer.
Dogs never have this same existential crisis, their sole mission in life is to seek out the awesome.
Everything to a dog is awesome, or a new adventure, or something they need to explore, piss on, have sex with or take a nap by.
|"sup ladies, yeah, I got this"|
This is pretty much the timeline of our walk, to and from the mailbox with a slight detour to look at a cool truck in the parking lot.
12:15 – walk out the door. Dog: “Hey, I gotta poop over here!” Me: “Damnit dog you were just out!”
12:17 – Dog done pooping
12:18 – Walked through breezeway. Dog: “Yo! Whats in this door?? No? ok, fine, whoa! That insect is crazy!”
12:19 – Take a left onto the sidewalk, drop envelope, me: “shit”, Dog: “whats up? You ok? Yeah, just a envelope, cool, hey check out this Jeep isn’t it dope? Nevermind, SHIT!, I gotta get out in front of you to make sure no robbers or gangsters or anything try and steal your beer and/or money!”
12:20 – Me: “Jesus Christ dog, take it easy” Dog: “huh? Yo, hustle up! Ahh, gotta piss hold on”
12:22 – It was a long piss. Dog: “Hey! Can I go up these stairs? What about those stairs? Who do you think is up there? OH! They have a big grill with a smoker thing on it, think they left a chunk of beef on it for me to eat?? Whats that noise? A door closing? Hey, Mister! Coming out of the crappy Dodge Stratus, you wanna scratch my back and/or ears and/or give me a treat? Hell yeah!!! Gimme some of that!!”
12:24 – Me: “ok dog, quit bothering the nice man” Dog: “son of a bitch, I would cut you if I could…NEVERMIND! Yo! What about those stairs?!?!, I gotta check that out, can i? Can I? Can I?
12:26 – Walking by the pool, a couple people are polishing off a bottle of wine and laughing. Dog: “HEY!! HEY GUYS! Just saying high and seeing if things are cool, not to be a dick but can I get in on that drank???” Me: “Dog, get over here, leave them alone, don’t bother the people getting drunk at the pool”
12:27 – Make it to the mailbox, drop shit everywhere because dog is at end of the leash trying to go onto someones porch and figure out why their windchimes are chiming.
12:30 – Checking the mail, throwing away junk mail. Dog: “dude, I gotta chill for a second” Lies down and falls asleep.
12:30 and 30 second – Me: “Dog, lets go” Dog: “Hell Yeah! Lets do it! I got some shit to explore! Hey, can we go on a car ride later?” Me: "No car rides, we were out all day, besides, daddy has had a few beers"
12:31 - Dog: "There is hella junk in that garbage can! I really really want to chew up some of that newspaper" Me: "lets go dog, I wanna go check out that pick up over there, its pretty cool" Dog: "whoop, thought we were going this way, i'm with ya bro, hell yeah thats cool, lets go look at that, bet it has aftermarket exhaust"
And then we just repeat everything in reverse.
Dogs are crazy like that.
But, not really. Dogs don’t have the built in, with time, jaded factor that a lot of us get. Things are always new and awesome to dogs. They are always hungry for more food, more exploring, more fun.
Take your dog for a walk someday and just watch them and how they act. They want to know everything, even thought for the one millionth time they go and sniff the neighbors door or stare intently at the tree that sort of kind of looks like a spooky monster.
Dogs are the antithesis of “professional” adult. Always looking to play, always feeling the wind in their hair and never asking for anything in return.
|"Get me a fresh beer will ya? Im Parched!"|
It would be a nice personality trait to have. Granted, it would not really work in modern society, you have to pay your bills and work and make dinner and clean and make your bed and all the other shit that is required of a person, but, the crux of a dog attitude is the same.
Take a second every so often and look around and take in the wonders of what is around us.
Awhile back, years and years ago now, back when still apart of a show ski team, I remember being out of the showcourse and just riding back there and looking around, taking in the sunset, looking downcourse and seeing all the people that were there to watch the show, seeing the people on the shorline with their kids having a picnic, hearing the motor from the boat burble along as it churned away, seeing the bar and the people smiling and drinking, hearing the announcer faintly pump up our arrival in whatever act we were doing and, instead of, concentrating on making sure that I am ready for this act and that I had to change costumes when I land and be at the back dock right away and hoping that my jump skis were in the right place, I took it in and “holy shit, this is awesome!!!”
These are the things we can all learn from watching our dogs, just experiencing things on the daily, the wow of seeing something you see everyday but being interested for no real reason.
I have read a couple sad articles that people write after a pet dies and they talk about the love they brought, the comfort they provided, the family aspect they were apart of, but, that is something that you don’t need a tragic event to experience or remember fondly.
Your dog, and waterskiing in a slight way, provide that daily. The window into a more innocent world, a less cluttered, a less hurried, a world with more wonderment, a world with more fun in it.
I like to try and think of the exact thing going through my head when I leave the top of the jump ramp, hitting the pop just so, and flying. Everything came together just so and you are soaring, you don’t think about bills or work or anything, its just joy.
This has to be what a dog thinks at all times. You know the feeling when you get home from work and your dog is overjoyed to see you? Or when you say, “wanna go outside?” and they jump up like crazy “Yes, hell yeah, lets go outside dude!!”
There is a genuine joy to a dogs life that isn’t burdened down by life. Waterskiing has a similar vibe, when you are behind the boat it’s a simple joy.
We do lose sight of that sometimes, I think, in trying to get that next buoy, or that extra 5-feet in the air or hit that next trick.
Not quite stopping along the way and realizing how amazing it is that we can actually do what we are doing.
We are cutting towards the ramp and going to crush this jump, or looking at a set of stairs and wondering if there is some beef on the grill we can eat.
It’s a simple joy, but, it’s a great joy that dogs know intrinsically and we sometimes have to remind ourselves of.