As said in the last part of this series, after Roxy’s passing Jana had made it very clear that she didn't want another dog.
Although I could fully understand Jana’s feelings, I really missed having a dog around. I’ve had dogs for most of my life and find that I am most at ease with dogs around. However, having a dog is a serious commitment for all in the house so I had to wait for something to change.
And wait I did.
For a number of years I have belonged to a hot Rod club in town. One of our members had told me a story of what happened to him the previous night, and I shared the story with Jana.
At about 2 o’clock in the morning they were awakened by a knock on the door of their house As my friend answered the door, there were two police officers holding a television set. They asked him if it was his television. He took a quick look and replied puzzled, “Yes why are you holding it”?
It turned out that their house had been broken into while he and his wife were sleeping.
The police had been driving by and thought it was a little bit odd to have two people running down a driveway carrying a television set at 2 o’clock in the morning.
When I was done telling the story to Jana she quite innocently remarked, "Maybe having a dog in the house isn't such a bad idea after all."
Before I can go further in the story I have to explain something that occurred to me several years ago. I woke up one morning with a clear memory of a revelation that had been given to me through the night. Of course the first thing I had to do is wake Jana and share it with her. “Honey, I have had a revelation that helps me understand women better. Men can be bad but it takes a woman to be truly evil”.
She thought about it and answered as she usually does to my pearls of wisdom, "Yes, dear."
To make my point, I explained, “Men can only be bad because were not smart enough to scheme and brew on something for years in order to exact revenge. So, men can only be bad. Women on the other hand will never forget, they will quietly bide their time, and get even in mean and nasty ways”.
So when Jana came out with that simple, innocent statement, a little light in the recesses of my mind said “Jerry, get in touch with your feminine side”. Which is exactly what I did. I didn’t move a muscle, I didn’t flinch, and I simply gave the male auto-reply “Uh-huh”.
Of course, Jana immediately recognized the major mistake she had innocently made and looked to see if there was any indication I was really listening to her.
I, on the other hand, made a Herculean effort to ensure that there was nothing in my posture, in my voice, or in further conversations to give away that this was one of those rare occasions where she had my full attention.
Now I had to try to think like a woman in order to get what I wanted.
That may sound simple to some but, in truth, it’s very difficult. What’s an appropriate timeline? How should I sneak around this? How can I make this seem very innocent? How can I make it seem like her idea? And finally, how can I make absolutely sure I’m going to get my own way? Subterfuge comes naturally to a woman, but men just cannot plan that far ahead or to that level of detail.
I came upon a plan.
A few weeks later I innocently said to Jana, “Honey, why don’t we go for a drive”? Not realizing my intent she said, “Certainly, where we going to go”? I replied, “Just out into the country, there are some people who have Rottweiler puppies for sale and I thought we would just take a look”.
I realized that this was the most sensitive part of my plan.
I would have to let Jana think that she was in total control of the situation. So I added, “We're just going to look. I don’t expect us to get a dog but I just thought we could go and look. If you’re not comfortable with it we’ll just drive away”.
I could tell by the deer in the headlights look that Jana was way outside of her comfort zone.
She really didn’t want another dog, but she did remember her earlier comment, and I was letting her be in charge. So, with Jana fully believing that we would not come home with a dog, we went.
This is a little bit like fishing.
I got the fish close, it’s interested in the bait, and it’s nibbling at the hook. Of course I wasn’t worried about setting the hook or in reeling in the fish, my money was on the power of puppies.
Things started out pretty much as I planned. We drove out, I kept assuring Jana that we were just looking and by no means was I planning on getting a dog today.
So there we were, sitting on the breeder’s porch with seven or eight Rottweiler puppies crawling all over us.
And, of course, the puppies were making a big fuss over Jana. They were crawling on her, climbing, and licking her everywhere. Inwardly I smiled; I knew Jana would not be able to resist a powerful voodoo such as this.
As I was watching all this, I started to get worried, "Wait a minute, I wanted to get just ONE dog!"
Puppy voodoo is very powerful. I did manage to talk Jana down to one, and we picked one that was full of life with just a hint of mischief.
And that’s how Jasmine came to live with us.
To be continued ...
Articles by Jerry Rade:
The Ups And Downs Of Dog Ramps
Living With The Dog Mamma: (Part 1) The Rest of the Story
Living With The Dog Mamma: (Part 2) A Dog In The House