“Sit,” I said.
“Now wait a minute,” he said. “When you’re talking to your other friends, you don’t say ‘sit,’ you say, ‘have a seat,’ or ‘please, sit down.’ I know, because I’ve heard you!”
“Well, then, have a seat — on the floor, you’re not allowed on the furniture!” I said.
“Cripes,” he said, and flumphed onto the carpet.
“Everything cozy now?” I asked.
“I guess,” he said.
“I need to talk to you about a few things now that you are growing up,” I said.
“I already heard about the sex stuff from my cousin,” said the dog-who-must-not-be-written-about.
“That’s good, but that’s not what I had in mind,” I said. “I was thinking more along the lines of doggy etiquette.”
“I’ll bite,” he said, “what’s that.”
“Well,” I began, “your predecessor, Max…”
“Max, Max, Max, all I ever hear about is Max. Max was taller, Max was nicer, Max, Max, Max!” he ranted.
“Have you been watching Brady Bunch reruns again?” I asked.
“You got it! I’m boning up because Morgan is in a Brady Bunch skit for the Auxiliary Follies!”
“I hate to tell you, but I am sure dogs are not allowed in the Middle School theater,” I explained.
“But I’m a service dog!” he said indignantly.
“Oh, really? And what possible service do you provide?” I asked.
“I make people happy!” he said.
“I don’t think that qualifies, and besides you scare children.”
“Just the little ones…” he tried.
“Stop changing the subject,” I said. “Back to Max. Max didn’t drink out of the toilet, first of all.”
“But it’s always so nice and cold!” he said.
“Believe me, with kids around, you’ve been lucky so far,” I said. “No more drinking out of the toilet. And, no more eating tissue out of waste baskets.”
“Oh brother!” he said. “Here I try to help clean up around the house and you think I’m being naughty.”
“That’s right. That’s naughty. So, no more. And you have to come when you are called the first time!”
“I didn’t hear you,” he said.
“You didn’t hear me what?” I asked
“Ma’am,” he said, smirking.
“And wipe that smirk off your face. Don’t be so sophomoric!” I warned. We were both silent for a while. I was working and he was casting fond looks towards the bathroom.
“I’m bored,” he said.