Patti Soldavini

Archive for April, 2013|Monthly archive page

Big Dog

In animals, dogs, humor, pets, weimaraners on 04/29/2013 at 9:16 pm

"Is this my walk-on?"

“Is this my walk-on?”

As Olive plays “Peekaboo” in the woods, I can’t help but ask myself if she actually “parted the trees.” Upon seeing this image now, it reminds me of the poster for the Tim Burton film, “Big Fish.”



In animals, dogs, humor, pets, weimaraners on 04/29/2013 at 8:39 pm



Olive barking orders at me in the park. This dog must have been a marine in a previous life. Maybe I was too. This explains everything.

Nowhere to Hide

In animals, dogs, humor, lifestyle, pets, weimaraners on 04/29/2013 at 8:25 pm

"Do I know these people?"

“Do I know these people?”

Olive is getting to be so well known locally, that she can’t even hide in the middle of the woods. She’s going to have to start to wear Ray-Bans. Or one of those plastic black glasses with the big Caucasian flesh-colored Roman nose and Groucho Marx mustache. Yes, last weekend, as Olive and I strolled through the trails at Schooley’s Mountain Park, we come upon a young couple, their grade school-aged daughter and their little dog. We exchange some pleasantries and start to move on. “Come on Olive, let’s go,” I say in a slightly unhinged, “Isn’t-it-such-a-beautiful-day” sing song voice. And then I hear it. From the Mother of the group. “EXCUSE ME. DO YOU WRITE ABOUT OLIVE?” And a smile begins to stretch across my face. “Why yes, I do,” I reply. And then the coolest thing happens. She and her husband start to laugh in the slightly giddy way that people do when they encounter a celebrity. And the woman says, “Our friend Rosemary sends us your posts sometimes.” And now it’s my turn to chuckle. “Rosemary is one of my dearest childhood friends” I reply. During this exchange, Olive is up ahead, staring at me as though the truck-sized peeled grape she has imagined and telepathically communicated is about to materialize right in front of her salivating mouth. “So Olive, do you have any idea why you are so well known in these parts? Because the blog you rarely contribute to is called Life with Olive. Maybe it’s time you started a blog called Life with Patti and I’ll contribute to it whenever there’s a full moon. She just stares at me in that uniquely weimaraner sort of way. Part adoring, part mischievous, part goofy. This dog just lights up everything around her.



Psychic Encounter

In animals, dogs, humor, pets, weimaraners on 04/17/2013 at 9:27 pm

"Someone is reading my MIND right now?"

“Someone is reading my MIND right now?”

Yes, they are Olive. They are hearing all your unspoken and unheard thoughts. And apparently, you are quite the chatterbox. Olive and I encountered the Hackettstown version of the Long Island Medium today. As we wait in line at the feed supply store where Olive and I stop at the end of our walk to get “candy” for Olive (Translation: Bully Sticks and Biscuits), the woman in front of me wheels around on her heels looks at Olive and then very emphatically says to me: “She really, really loves you and wants you to know that you take awesome care of her.” She follows that with, “I’m a psychic, I communicate with both people and animals.” And then something to the effect of, “I can’t help it, she (points to Olive) keeps talking. She wants you to know that her collar is too tight.” And I’ll be damned, but I reach down and it is a little too tight. And you can’t really tell that by looking at it, and she said it so quickly, it seemed genuine. I look at Olive and instantly I feel like Sherman to her Mr. Peabody. The Psychic natters on like a magpie and I keep staring at Olive. I feel confused, unable to hear her thoughts and thinking that I should see the words tumbling out of her mental cauliflower. The Psychic wants to give Olive a big biscuit, but I decline and make the fatal mistake of offering TMI (too much information) by saying that Olive has a fragile digestive system. The Psychic takes out a crystal hanging from the end of a silver chain or some sort of amulet and begins swinging it gently like a pendulum over Olive’s head. By now, even I’m transfixed. “She needs food without wheat in it. That will be better for her tummy.” Kim, the woman behind the counter has a strange look on her face. Like she’s embarrassed for me because I’m being subjected to this public “reading” of my dog. I didn’t mind. How could I? It made my day to hear that Olive loves me and thinks I take such good care of her. The Psychic pulls out her business card and hands it to me. Olive and I exit the store and climb in the car. “I love you too Olive and I want you to know that you take very good care of me.”

Olive’s World

In animals, dogs, humor, lifestyle, pets, weimaraners on 04/15/2013 at 10:05 pm

"Are you getting this?"

“Are you getting this?”

Just how smart are weimaraners? Here’s Olive re-enacting Andrew Wyeth’s “Christina’s World.”



Olive’s Surprise

In animals, dogs, humor, lifestyle, pets, weimaraners on 04/15/2013 at 9:32 pm



Early Sunday morning as I sat at the dining room table reading the newspaper, Olive lounged across the couch in the living room below. As she always does, she drapes herself across the back of the couch in front of the windows as though she is a rare and beautiful object on public display. Which when you think about it, is true. All of a sudden I hear a loud THUD. I don’t even look up because I know exactly what it is. Another brainless bluejay bully ricochets off the window. This happens at least monthly in the Spring and Summer. Startled, Olive flies off the couch like a projectile that’s been launched by a slingshot, quickly trots upstairs and seats herself next to me. And doesn’t move a muscle. My heart melts. It’s my job to protect Olive. Even against kamikaze bluejays.


Car Wash Shame

In animals, dogs, humor, lifestyle, pets, weimaraners on 04/06/2013 at 7:49 pm

"Talk to the tail."

“Talk to the tail.”

There I stood outside the car wash this fine brisk morning, watching the cleaning jockeys vacuum all the fine taupe-colored half-inch long dog hairs threaded through the carpeting and filling the leather nooks and crannies of the seats. There must have been enough fur back there to cloak a bison. So much so that you would have thought that I was driving the world’s largest bristle brush. And that was nothing compared to all of Olive’s nose paste that they had to chip off the inside of all the windows. I had waited so long to clean the car that Olive’s nose paste now coated the windows like an opaque layer of DNA. The cleaning jockeys are scrubbing the windows so furiously, I think I actually hear the windows moan. How embarrassing. They have to work twice as hard to clean cars like mine. I’m surprised they don’t charge a premium for “Dirty Dog” cars. I think to myself, do I have to leave a $20 tip? Red-faced, I turn away and go inside to observe the process which is like watching an old Rube Goldberg contraption in action. I am always intrigued by this mechanical process but I have no idea why. Maybe it’s because we rarely see any mechanical processes up close any more. My car inches into the commercial shower stall. It is so dirty, it resembles a concept car designed to look like a giant clot of dirt on wheels. And poof! Like magic, a bright, shiny car gets spit out on the other end. The dirty dog smell is gone. It’s been replaced by this unique complex, multi-layered scent of windex, dirty dish rags, stale water and…dirty dog. I gag reflexively while the driver side window completes its journey South. I wonder if Olive will appreciate being able to see outside the cataract-free windows again. Maybe next time I won’t let the car get that dirty before I get it washed. And then I remember, I tell myself the same thing every time.

Weimaraners Rule

In animals, dogs, humor, pets, weimaraners on 04/06/2013 at 7:20 pm

"The world IS my oyster."

“The world IS my oyster.”

Speaking of oysters, where the hell is the buffet? I was told there would be a buffet.

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