. . . and this one never took steroids, made an eight-figure salary, or appeared on "Dancing With the Stars." He does, however, have long legs and muscular shoulders, enjoys a good ball game, and owns a beautiful fur coat.
I'm speaking, of course, of our dog Frank. He's now fully into middle age (7) and about 10 pounds heavier than he was when we got him 3 years ago, but he's still trying to race around like the speed demon he then was just off the greyhound track. But as any old ballplayer will tell you, age and decrepitude have a way of sneaking up on you. Well, they paid a visit to Frank this past Monday when our daughter-in-law's family came over for a Labor Day cookout in our back yard. They brought their dog William--some kind of sheepdog, I think, and a perpetual motion machine himself--and Frank, while reeling off laps around the house with the evident purpose of showing off his athletic prowess, somehow managed to break a toe in his right front paw. Yesterday Melany took the poor fellow to the vet, who advised that Frank stay off that paw as much as possible over the next 4 to 6 weeks. No more laps around the house, no more chasing down squirrels (or the shadows of them), no more brisk walks along the Erie Canal even (his favorite nightly activity). He limps his way into the back yard to answer Nature's call, then limps back into the house to resume his enforced rest. Like many banged-up sportsmen, though, he appreciates a good soak in the jacuzzi now and then.
I've reminded Frank of that old saying by Mark Twain about age being "an issue of mind over matter: if you don't mind, it doesn't matter.” But that seems to have just gone in one of his floppy ears and out the other.