Monday, June 29, 2009

Boxer KOs ugly-dog competition

In a history-making upset over the weekend, a boxer named Pabst claimed the title of World's Ugliest Dog at the Sonoma-Marin Fair in California. Pabst (above), so named because of his "bitter beer face," defeated a Chinese crested to claim the prestigious title in the one contest that yours truly could never win.

Pabst's blue-ribbon win was surprising because the Chinese crested breed typically owns the title. It's like the greyhound in racing, the Kennedy and Bush families in politics, the bad accent in "True Blood." The Chinese crested has "ugly" embedded in its DNA. So the boxer's win, aided by his reverse-vampire underbite, was quite a feat, indeed.

Pabst's caretaker, Miles Egstad, was surprised by the boxer's victory, exclaiming, "I don't think he's that ugly!" Still, he was surely happy to pocket $2,600 in prize money. I tend to agree with Egstad's assessment -- Pabst doesn't even come close to the standard of ugliness set by legendary three-time winner Sam. As a fellow owner of an underbite, albeit a much less severe one, I believe that Pabst's dental issues convey a certain gravitas. But Pabst is a deserving champion and should be commended on his win. Thankfully, this year's contest was not marred by any ugly controversy like the 2006 event.

Pabst, we at Pug Life Ministries salute you, and we eagerly await the arrival of your $260 tithe. You have joined the pantheon of unappealing pooches, scaling the highest heights of hideousness. Many dogs competed, but only you could fetch the ugly stick.

In closing, I would like to recite a poem from the classic 1986 movie "Wildcats." This one's for you, Pabst:

You ain't got no alibi,
You ugly.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Crisis of faith

My flock, I am on the verge of questioning Allah's infinite wisdom with regard to the Texas heat. Pray for me ... and my struggling air-conditioner.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Mugsy's whereabouts revealed

DALLAS (AP) -- The mystery of Ayatollah Mugsy's bizarre disappearance was solved Wednesday when the enigmatic canine religious leader revealed that he had spent the last five days waiting in line in a Wal-Mart Supercenter "express lane."

"The sign said 10 items or less," the ayatollah barked at an emotional news conference, "but several of the shoppers were clearly breaking the rules. I don't care if it costs extra; next time, God willing, I will go to Target or Kroger."

Word of the ayatollah's disappearance broke over the weekend, when members of his harem told the news media that they had no idea where he was. Officials at Mugsy's Pug Life Ministries at first said they didn't know about the ayatollah's whereabouts. Later, the ministry issued a statement saying that the pug was "probably just out taking a walk."

As media curiosity grew, Mugsy's younger brother Wendell released a statement saying that the ayatollah was "climbing the Matterhorn to blow off some steam after a difficult week." An hour later, Wendell released a new statement that read, "Mount Everest is higher than the Matterhorn, right? That's where Mugsy is. He's climbing Mount Everest. It's nothing unusual."

It was unclear who was in charge of Pug Life Ministries during the ayatollah's absence, though speculation centered on Wendell and a chew toy named Mallard, a duck who is believed to be Mugsy's top assistant. Reached by phone, Mallard declined to quack.

During an interview Tuesday with the Associated Press, several members of Ayatollah Mugsy's harem expressed doubt over the official stories released by the ministry, which by this time included word that the pug icon was helping squelch a rebellion in Iran, that he was hang-gliding in Peru, and that he was having his nails trimmed. Those members of the harem were reportedly expelled early Wednesday, but Ayatollah Mugsy declined to comment on the matter.

A representative of Wal-Mart, reached at the retail giant's headquarters in Bentonville, Ark., said that having a customer wait in line for five full days is "somewhat unusual, but not unprecedented." The retailer says it tries to limit waits to no more than four days.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Ode to a Fallen Insect

Like PETA, I mourn the martyr fly,
All the lives it could have touched,
The diseases it could have spread,

Snuffed out in an Obama instant.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Keep a lid on this behavior

If you take only one thing away from my teachings, only one small nugget of wisdom, please let it be this: DO NOT FLUSH YOUR PUPPY DOWN THE TOILET!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

The great meatball caper

A momentous event took place today, my flock. It will forever stand in the pantheon of great achievements during my esteemed ayatollahhood. Allow me to set the scene:

Mother was cleaning out the refrigerator, throwing away a startling collection of moldy cheeses and vintage mustard bottles. Finally, the refrigerator was sparkling clean, and she moved on to the freezer. Wendell stood nearby, ready to help, and I lay on the cool tile floor beside my food bowl, praying for a second dinner. Then my ears perked up as a crashing noise erupted from mother's vicinity. "Aaah!" she yelped, fumbling with boxes. "Come and help me!" she then said to father, who was at the laptop checking my new Twitter page.

Father looked up slowly. "Seriously?" he said. His delay allowed mother's frozen payload to slip further from her grasp. And then we saw it: a bag of frozen meatballs tumbling in slow-motion to the floor. Praise be to clumsy mothers! My eyes widened, as did Wendell's. Then we sprinted to the scene. Meatballs rolled across the floor, at least a dozen of them. Mother dropped a frozen pizza and some other boxes to try to scoop them up, but she was no match for the superior athleticism of the pug. Seconds later, Wendell and I emerged victorious from the scrum, each of us clutching a frozen, meaty, halaal treat.

Negotiations commenced immediately thereafter, and we agreed to return the meatballs to mother in exchange for some Milkbones. I considered it a great victory for Pugistan, getting a handful of treats without having to engage in any demeaning parlor tricks such as "sit" or "take it." With a mouthful of icy meat, I was bargaining from a position of power. Just the way I like it.

After the commotion had ended and mother carried a plateful of sullied meatballs to the trash bin outside, I casually approached the male human and slipped him a dollar. "Well played, father," I barked. "Well played."

Friday, June 12, 2009

Father's Day special

I have a special offer for you, my flock. Today only, order $50 or more from my online gift shop and get free shipping! Use coupon code GO4GIFTS.

Father's Day is June 21, and what better way to show your appreciation for Dad than with an official Pug Life Ministries T-shirt or BBQ Apron, or perhaps a Classic Harem-Wear Thong.

All proceeds go to Wendell's Obedience School Fund -- because another sofa cushion would be a terrible thing to waste.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009


Ever the cutting-edge pug, I have decided to experiment with the breakthrough Web 2.0 site of 2008 -- Twitter. You may follow my adventures in mini-blogging at Tonight, I have been chronicling the Great Storm of '09.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

The Ayatollah's Axioms: History

Pugs who cannot remember the past are condemned to forget where they buried their bones.

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Mugsy delivers commencement address

The following is a transcript of a commencement address the ayatollah delivered on Saturday at a PetSmart in Plano, Texas:

Assalamu alaikum. And thank you, Head Cashier Smith, for that generous introduction. I am here to congratulate you, the Class of 2009, on your accomplishments. I understand that, with the exception of that screeching Chihuahua biting that embarrassed woman in the back row, all of you have passed your coursework and earned diplomas. Some of you have learned to sit, to stay, to heel. Some may have even learned to roll over. You should all be commended. But know that this is really just the beginning -- you are all embarking on a lifetime of learning.

I am reminded of my own graduation. I finished at the top of PetSmart's puppy class back in 2002. And donning my graduation cap on that proud day, I could have never imagined the great heights I would someday achieve. To think that only 18 months later I would be the first to ever translate the holy Quran into canine barking, or that I would shortly thereafter found the world's largest interfaith, interspecies ministry -- truly, it boggles the mind.

Recent graduates, you cannot hold yourselves to the lofty standards that I have set. To do so would be to set yourselves up for failure. But that does not mean you shouldn't aim high. We live in a world where the humans often ignore our brilliance, believing the myth that they are the superior species. Do not let this bring you down. I would like to think that a wise fawn pug, with the richness of his experiences, would more often than not reach a better conclusion than a human who hasn't lived that life.

So go forth, young graduates, and make this world your own. Sniff every mailbox; savor every delectable, crunchy junebug. I believe the puppies are our future. We have taught you well, and now we must let you lead the way. Allahu akbar!

[Rapturous applause]

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Mugsy weighs in on Obama's speech

This has been a momentous day, my flock. I must say that I was pleased with President Obama's effort to reach out to canine Muslims during his speech in Cairo. But next time, he must bring some Milkbones.