Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Mugsy endorses candidate

I don't usually get involved in partisan politics on this blog, but I am going to make an exception. At this point in our nation's history, the stakes are too high for me to remain silent. There is one candidate and one candidate alone with the ability to excite us, with the potential to renew our faith in the democratic process. He is handsome and charismatic, brimming with youthful vigor. His ideas are fresh. A relative political newcomer, he is free of the corruption and cynicism that so often permeate the political process. And he can help break down boundaries that have stood in this country for far too long.

Today, my flock, I offer my endorsement to the one and only Willie Bean Roscoe P. Coltrane. This 7-year-old Labrador retriever is running for mayor of Fairhope, Ala. And although his candidacy started as a joke, the Coltrane train is now on the tracks and picking up steam. My sources tell me that residents of Fairhope are growing more excited by the day. They are intrigued by the idea of canine rule. Look at the current state of the economy -- could canines have done any worse? Fill the House, Senate and White House with dogs, and I guarantee you one thing at the very least: They would not approve a half-trillion-dollar deficit like the one projected for 2009.

Said one wise Fairhope resident of the furry mayor-in-waiting, "He doesn't have any skeletons in his closet. He's eaten them all."

Change is in the air, my flock. Embrace it. Embrace the estimable Willie Bean Roscoe P. Coltrane.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Mugsy issues fatwa

Too many times have I been distracted. A flash of light shatters the darkness, drawing my gaze away from the big screen and onto the tiny screen of a cell phone. And for what -- an insignificant text message? "No more!" I say. The infidels at the movie theater have left me no choice but to issue a fatwa!

Henceforth under canine Islam, it is strictly forbidden to use a cell phone for any purpose in a theater while the movie is showing. If your text-message conversation is truly more interesting than the film you paid $9 to see, then step outside and spare the rest of us your annoying presence. Violators will forfeit their thumbs.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Temptation is everywhere

Dallas is in the midst of its annual Mary Kay convention, and longtime students of this blog know what that means: Temptation. But I have been strong, my flock. God willing, I will make it to Aug. 2 -- when the parade of pink Cadillacs finally leaves town -- without repeating the mistakes of my past.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Lost ring? I pity the Foo

Though my father swam a dozen or so laps, scouring the bottom of the pool, our efforts to retrieve mother's wedding ring were unsuccessful. He found only a plastic ring, the rubber from the leg of a deck chair and two pieces of chewed gum (deposited in the pool in blatant violation of my fatwa at the 2003 Radical Clerics' Convention in Tehran). God willing, their marriage will survive the loss of this ring, with the help of counseling from the ministry.

After our unsuccessful retrieval mission, I went to Oklahoma City for a couple of days. My aunt had tickets to see the Foo Fighters, peace be upon them, and she invited me to go along. This was the third time I had seen the band, dating back to the mid-'90s. This may seem peculiar to you, given the fact that I am a 7-year-old pug. But Allah works in mysterious ways. My first Foo Fighters show was in the historic Cain's Ballroom in Tulsa, a small venue that lacked air conditioning and was stiflingly hot, inspiring an alternate version of the song "Big Me" that has become popular on the bootleg circuit. It was interesting to see how the band had changed from those early days as I watched them Thursday at the cavernous Ford Center, soon to be the home of Oklahoma City's new NBA team.

Singer Dave Grohl first hit it big as drummer for the legendary band Nirvana, whose Pixies-inspired punk sensibilities rejected the trappings of arena rock. Now, the Foo Fighters have embraced such bombast. Thursday's show, which was excellent albeit a bit loud for my aging ears, featured a large entourage of backing musicians and a much-touted triangle solo that was met with a thunderous standing ovation.

I will pass no judgments on the merits of such a style shift except to say that any drum solo exceeding five minutes is probably excessive.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Banding together

The time is 12:06 a.m., and I am about to embark on an important mission. Mother went swimming earlier at a friend's neighborhood pool, and upon her return, she discovered that her wedding band was gone. She had already, months ago, lost her cubic zir ..., er, diamond engagement ring, which lies somewhere in the dark recesses of the floorboards of father's car.

So we are going to try to retrieve the wedding band. Since water is involved, I will naturally be eschewing a paws-on role in favor of a supervisory position. Pray for us, my flock. Can we preserve their union? Or are my parents' days of wedded bliss over?

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Sweet dreams

My brother, Wendell, is barking in his sleep. I suspect he is dreaming about rawhide. But then again, aren't we all?

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Used-car salespug

Several weeks ago, mother purchased a new car. Or a newer one, at least. And since then, her old vehicle had sat in the street at the side of the house, contributing nothing of value to the household. My parents made a few half-hearted attempts to sell it -- taking it to the local Walgreens with a partially melted for-sale sign in the window, for example -- but they achieved no success. Not a single phone call. Finally, I could take no more. "Mother, father," I barked, "this is the weekend. We must sell that car. It is blocking my view of the creek." And with that, I took control of the project. This was a bit of a stretch for me -- being a salesman is vastly different from being the leader of a congregation. But I had faith in my abilities.

The vehicle in question was mechanically sound, yet it was on the wrong side of 150,000 miles and had some exterior blemishes. Father tells me that he and his friends would have loved to have had such a car back when he was in high school -- did I mention that it's supercharged? -- but the demographics did not seem to be in our favor in our relatively affluent suburb. Here, the teenagers often drive nicer cars than mother and father. It's disgusting, really.

So I decided to cast a wider net, posting my first-ever ad on Craigslist on Friday evening. Soon, the calls poured in from across the metro area. As the first prospective buyer made his way to our house, I eyeballed the family. "Mother," I barked, "you're not really going to wear that shirt in front of the customers, are you? It might send the wrong message." She looked down at her "I Drink Your Milkshake" T-shirt, blushed and then went to change. The prospect brought a canine along and showed some interest, but he was not ready to commit to a sale that evening.

That was OK; I had others. Saturday arrived, and an enthusiastic lad named Jeremy called. I detailed for him the car's condition, and he proceeded to ask why I was selling the car so cheap. I took this as a good sign. Then he told me that he thought he'd like to buy it. "Why don't you come on over and take it for a spin, Jeremy," I barked. Jeremy took longer than expected to arrive, but he eventually found the compound. He must have been 17 or 18, and his father accompanied him. They looked the car over closely, and Jeremy seemed downright giddy. They took it for a long test drive, and while they were gone I received more calls about the car. Finally, they returned.

Jeremy's father said that he was concerned about the engine noise. I told him it had been that way for as long as I could recall, and it ran just fine. Perhaps it was just the supercharger. Jeremy liked this explanation. After some more time under the hood, the father brought out an offer: $200 less than the $2,500 I was asking for the old Buick. I glanced over at Jeremy, who was practically drooling over the thought of this somewhat sporty set of wheels and its respectable 240-horsepower engine. "No," I barked, "I am fairly certain I can get $2,500 for the car."

The father grimaced. "I hate buying used cars. What do you think," he said, nodding toward his son. "Oh, you know what I think!" Jeremy replied. Soon, we had a deal, at full asking price. "Jeremy," I barked, as I went to retrieve the title, "would you care to play poker sometime?"

Saturday, July 12, 2008

A minor formality

A story with the potential to shake this ministry to its core recently came across my desk. A man in Knoxville, Tenn., says he was so consumed by the spirit of God that he fell and hit his head while worshipping. Now, 57-year-old Matt Lincoln is suing his church for $2.5 million for medical bills, lost income, and pain and suffering. If successful, this lawsuit could set a dangerous precedent for Pug Life Ministries, my flock. So I must ask that you all now sign the waiver below and have it notarized.

I hereby assume all risks involved in my participation in Pug Life Ministries. I fully understand that the power of Allah, when channeled through the world's pre-eminent pug ayatollah, can be unpredictable and potentially dangerous. I hereby agree not to sue Pug Life Ministries, Ayatollah Mugsy or any other representatives of the ministry for any injuries, real or imagined, that may befall me in the course of my worshipping, religious instruction, faith-healing or exorcism, should the ayatollah deem such action necessary. In the event of my passing, I shall forfeit all property, bank accounts, stocks, bonds and rawhide deposits to Ayatollah Mugsy, peace be upon him.

(Signature) (Print name) (Date)

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Among the giants

My veterinarian has at last cleared me to return to full blogging duties, and it is good to be back. Young Wendell did an admirable job filling in for me, and he will surely return from time to time. As expected, his youthful energy helped the ministry make great inroads among the coveted "tween" market. And as far as the tabloid rumors that Wendell has recently begun dating Disney star Miley Ray Cyrus, I can neither confirm nor deny.

The ayatollah clan spent the weekend in Oklahoma, where we met up with an old friend from Chicago whom we had not seen in several years. We also had the pleasure of meeting his girlfriend for the first time. I sensed that she was quite smitten with my puppy-dog eyes -- as many of you know, I have a certain effect on females of all species. But I promised our Chicago friend that I would not attempt to steal her away for my harem. As it is, overcrowding is already a significant problem.

While in Norman, we stopped by Heisman Park to pay homage to the University of Oklahoma's four Heisman Trophy winners. Among them is the great Billy Sims (right), peace be upon him and his fearsome 'fro. For many, OU football is a religion on par with canine Islam. And there is no reason the two cannot peacefully co-exist.

As I knelt before the statue of Billy Vessels, I said a quiet prayer. "Great, merciful God, deliver us from the summer doldrums of the baseball season so that we might watch football again. Aug. 30 cannot come soon enough. Amen."

Friday, July 04, 2008

Happy Independence Day

Happy birthday to America, the greatest Great Satan in the world! May you all enjoy a restful yet fun-filled weekend.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Mugsy returns

Greetings, my flock. Your furry imam has returned. I am going to have my stitches taken out tomorrow morning, and the veterinarian tells me it is OK to resume light blogging. Praise Allah! Soon, God willing, I will be allowed to go on a walk again. Or as my parents say when they don't want to excite me, "W-A-L-K." The silly humans think I can't spell.