Doggin’ On


Dog expects every man to do his duty

This may not translate beyond the reaches of certain parts of the UK but reading Charli Mills’ latest prompt at the Carrot Ranch

January 20, 2016 prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story about a boy and his dog, showing the value or benefit of such a relationship. Be creative, uplifting and demonstrate that such a relationship has merit. If the prompt takes you somewhere darker, know that writing into the dark often retrieves the light. Let it have a purpose.

doesn’t being back images of Dog or happy walks but a highly embarrassing faux pas I committed recently.

The Lawyer’s girlfriend – the Beautician of these pages – used one of her days off to volunteer at Battersea Dog’s Home. Her shifts at her Salon meant it was never clear what she would be doing from one day to the next. She and the Lawyer were still with us pending a move into a flat.


And Dog’s predecessor concurs

Bleary eyed yours truly comes downstairs to find the Beautician in the kitchen, already up and about. The conversation went something like this


‘Oh hi.’

‘Early start?’

‘Yeah. I said I’d be in promptly.’

Me, taking in her old clothes and lack of her black uniform. ‘What are you… Oh, of course. It’s Tuesday. You’ll be dogging.’

To quote from Wiki: ‘ Dogging is a British English slang term for engaging in public sex (usually in a car park or country park) while others watch them. Dogging has aspects of exhibitionism and voyeurism.’

What on earth came over me? Needless to say there was something of a stunned silence, followed by a  giggle and then ‘No, Geoff, all the work is indoors.’

I was mortified – I should have been cauterised, pasteurised, demonised.


‘I suppose you think that’s funny…’

Language is a tool for we writers but there are times when all it does is make a tool out of us. Perhaps with boyfriend parent material like that they moved out quite promptly.

And to the flash. Mary’s dog Peter, a gift from Rupert her half brother has been off his food recently.

Sometimes a dog’s the best listener

‘How old was grandpa’s dog when he died.’
‘Milton? 77 in dog years.’
‘Same as Grandpa.’
‘And Peter’s my age in dog years.’
Mary looked at her daughter’s worried face. ‘And you’re both young and healthy.’
‘That’s a coincidence isn’t it?’
‘Nothing more.’
‘I don’t want him to die.’
Mary watched Penny draw another circle. She wondered what had brought this on. Finally Penny stood and sat in the dog’s basket. ‘Listen Pete. If you die then I’ll be sad but we have to try and be happy.’ She looked at her mother. ‘That’s right, mum, isn’t it?’

If you want to catch up with Mary Penny and the others, click here

About TanGental

My name is Geoff Le Pard. Once I was a lawyer; now I am a writer. I've published four books - Dead Flies and Sherry Trifle, My Father and Other Liars, Salisbury Square and Buster & Moo. In addition I have published three anthologies of short stories and a memoir of my mother. More will appear soon. I will try and continue to blog regularly at about whatever takes my fancy. I hope it does yours too. These are my thoughts and no one else is to blame. If you want to nab anything I post, please acknowledge where it came from.
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22 Responses to Doggin’ On

  1. Anabel Marsh says:

    Oh dear, at least they moved out together and your faux pas didn’t put her off the family completely!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. noelleg44 says:

    I’ve had that conversation with my kids, a long time ago. It’s just as hard as telling them a relative might die! Good on the Beautician for catching your faux paw – never heard that term before!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Ali Isaac says:

    I predict you are going to see a massive spike in visits to your blog with a heading like that! 😂


  4. Annecdotist says:

    As expected, you’ve come up with a fabulous post in response to the doggy prompt. But didn’t Mary’s story start with her father being reincarnated as a dog? Or is that entirely my own fiction? And I love the clip of your dog baulking at the sea.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. That is a completely hilarious story and worthy of being included in a book like the one I am currently reading. 🙂


  6. jan says:

    Ha!!! Love the doggy video – does dogging really mean having public sex? Here dogging means pestering (or so I think – but I will be comfortable with that term from now on…)

    Liked by 2 people

  7. davidprosser says:

    I’m surprised she left you standing after that. Knuckle butty.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Norah says:

    Hilarious story, Geoff. You do have a way with words. 🙂
    Great flash too. Learning to deal with death is one of the perceived advantages of having a pet I believe. You have portrayed the message well.
    I think dog lovers will fall head over heals with your video. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  9. BunKaryudo says:

    Loved your tale of the dog, so to speak. Incidentally, I was also very taken with that photograph. I’d never seen a psychedelic Dalmatian before.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Charli Mills says:

    Ha, ha! Oh, I only know the term because of a video you shared of Fascinating Aida singing, “Dogging.” She had a good come-back! Now here I’ve gone and missed your post again. My internet woes are hopefully at an end, although yesterday I worked in town and the town internet (which is cable) went down. No wonder we have so many end-times conspirators in northern Idaho. 🙂 Tender flash about Penny and Pete, and a tie-back to remind us of the saga’s beginning. Yesterday, I was in town to do an interview as well as find a second office for my laptop. Both took me to the pub (Laughing Dog) where I interviewed the owner about his business and why he allows dogs. He said he started 11 years ago when he grew tired of the corporate world and wanted to expand his home-brewing hobby into a business. His lab was 2 at the time and he wanted a brand that he could connect with. Someone told him his dog had a laughing face. He thought, Laughing Dog, and Ben, the yellow lab, became the logo. Naturally all things dogs followed. Ben is still alive, about 93 in dog years. One can also buy a t-shirt at the pub which reads, “In dog beers, I’ve only had one.”

    Liked by 1 person

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