My name is Hip, and I’m your host for When In Doubt, Pet the Dog Week on Randy Boyd’s Blocks. You may know me as the cute, lovable golden mutt in my favorite novel, Walt Loves the Bearcat by Randy Boyd.
Thanks to Freaky Deaky Technologies, I’m guest blogging on my author’s blog. Not only are my thoughts being downloaded, they’re also being translated from dog to English! How cool is that!
My author’s dog Boomer is the dog who inspired my character in Walt Loves the Bearcat, but my performance as Hip is all me … Hip! In fact, I’m the one who suggested putting an exclamation point after my name in the fantasy sequences.
And I’m not ashamed to admit: it was also, me, Hip, that improvised many of the lines in the scene where the Bearcat surprises the injured athlete Walt with … me, Hip! You see, the scene started out … we have a clip? Oh, okay, we have a clip. Ruff it. I mean, rover it. I mean, roll it. Roll book excerpt:
Walter Yeager needed a reversal of spirit and a healthy distraction while his body healed. Bear did his part, dancing up a storm daily in the den, but as the weeks went by and the season was looking more and more like a wash, the time came for reinforcements in the form of a new addition to the Bearcat family: a happy slobbering tongue!
“Not now, Bear,” mumbled a slumbering Walter one morning in bed. When the licking persisted, he swiped away the source, resulting in a series of shrieking yelps. Walter awoke in a panic, then said in a high-pitched voice: “Hi, puppy! I’m so sorry!”
Bear has holding over the bed a golden aura of puppy heaven, a six-month-old mutt mixed with Labrador retriever, golden retriever and anything else beautiful the angels poured into his one-of-a-kind mold. He swam through the air for Walter; Walter reached out and took the puppy.
“He’s a big boy!” said Walter, calling up the animated voice he only used for dogs and small children. “Aren’t you a big boy? Aren’t you a handsome fella?”
Walter was like a boy on Christmas morning getting everything he ever dreamed of. He and the puppy explored one another, bouncing around the bed as if their bodies couldn’t contain their eagerness.
“Is he ours? Can we keep him, Bear, can we please? We can—oh, look, little one, Bear’s got that silly ole Joe Bruin grin on his face. You’re our dog now. Wanna be our dog? Yes, you do, big baby boy …”
The corona of Corona, Seattle was more radiant than ever. Walter played with his new playmate, and Bear played the responsible one–but not too responsible. After all, Bears need their joy, too.
So what if the pup pissed on the carpet during his strict house-training regimen. So what if Bear had to clean up puppy vomit in the middle of the night. So what if the nightly howling in those first few weeks kept the boys bleary-eyed throughout the day.
So what if Bear had to do the brunt of the work since Walter was on IR. Every single chore was a chore of love and the result of dreams coming true.
“What should we name him?” asked Bear that first week.
“I got this one,” said Walter. “Hip, because he is, and because he’s helping to heal mine. And Shoulder or Concussion wouldn’t sound cool at the dog park.”
—from Walt Loves the Bearcat
And … scene … I want my Oscar bone! How about an Oscar bone for Best Canine Performance? Please? I’m begging you.
This is Hip, sitting like a good boy, anticipating a treat, and thanking you for stopping by Pet the Dog Week, a very special celebration of the periodic column, When In Doubt, Pet the Dog, and urging you to check me out in Walt Loves the Bearcat, a Lambda Literary Award Finalist for Best Romance.
I want my Lammy bone! How about a Lammy bone? How about an Emmy bone for best host?