When I was little, my Nin had a weiner dog named Tigger, and he hated me. Really, the dog was jealous of me the way siblings are of each other. Only instead of pinching me and tattling, he liked to growl and bite.
We came home from the grocery store, and we had stopped at Gage’s Market at the bottom of the hill. Gage’s was your little mom n’ pop family owned gas station – a couple of gas pumps outside and everything you could want inside — candy, bottled soda (the nice, thick glass bottles), and Mrs. Gage behind the ancient cash register (the kind with the push buttons – no electronic things here). I remember there was also a pool table in the back, and of course, it was a bait shop too.
My favorite things to get at Gage’s were Cheerwine and suckers. They had one of those platic displays that held a ton of suckers inside and also had a plastic top that held the sticks on the sucker. This display was usually full of 3 kinds of great suckers: Chupa-Chups (which you can still find today), a sucker that was the consistency of a Smartie (it was 2 colors – one flavor on the top, another flavor on the bottom, my fave combo was red and blue), and Life Saver suckers. On this day I got a Life Saver sucker that was white with red and green swirls in it.
So as my Nin unloaded the groceries, I went into the house. It was summer, so of course, I had my shoes off — running around barefoot. I headed for the rec room, through the swinging, old-western-bar-style doors. As I came through the door, Tigger bit my big toe. I was probably only 3 or 4 at the time, definitely not in school yet. My sucker dropped to the floor, and as Nin would describe it, my eyes welled up with big crocodile tears. I cried, and I reached for my sucker. Every time I reached for the sucker, Tigger would bite my big toe again. Luckily, even though this seemed to drag on forever, Ninny came through with another load of groceries, yelled and screamed at the tigger-dog, and proceeded to spray my toe with antiseptic spray, the kind that stung sooooo bad.
What I find really amusing is despite the fact that I had many episodes similar to this with Tigger, I really wanted a tigger-dog of my own – only not mean. You would think that I would have been scared of dogs for the rest of my life instead of loving them as much as I do. My Nin, being the wonderful granny that she is (I’ll post a story on that comment sometime)– or maybe just being the wonderful dog lover that she is, did get another tigger-dog (read: 3 year old speak for mini dachsund) and he was for me. His name was Odie William Hobson, and he loved me. He would attack other people, but never me 🙂
So this picture is for my Nin, who now has two more mini-dachsunds – Max and Baby-dog (the only other dog who’s ever bitten me), along with a slew of other dogs and animals. If Tigger were still around we could dress him up in this outfit — though Baby might make a fine Tigger-replacement.