Iggy does the math.

“No no no no no no no!”

Aw, come on, Iggy, let me take a picture.

“No!”

Why not?

“You do this all the time. As soon as I settle in to an activity, or lay down for a nap, you go ‘oh how adorable’ and you take pictures. Then you post them on that stupid blog for everyone to see.”

You make it sound like it’s some horrible, intrusive –

“It is intrusive! Did you ever ask if I wanted to be put on display in front of millions of people?”

It’s hardly millions, Iggy.

“Okay, hundreds of thousands, then. I swear, it’s like living with my own personal paparazzi. I can’t get a minute to myself!”

Not hundreds of thousands either.

“Tens of thousands?”

Fewer.

“How much fewer?”

Eighty-two.

“Eighty-two fewer than tens of thousands? Um… nine thousand – no, wait, nine hundred nine? Nine thousand hundred… wait –”

No, Iggy –

“I know, that’s wrong. Nine… no. Ninety-nine… ninety… ninety-ninety-ninety? Yeah. Ninety-ninety-ninety. Hang on, that can’t be right.”

No, I mean not tens of thousands –

“Purple!”

What?

“Purple is less than thousands, right?”

What are you talking –

“Fish hundred purple!”

You all right?

“Aw, now I’m confused. Math is numbers, right? Purple’s a number – no, wait. Is it? I’m lost! HELP ME! I DID TOO MUCH MATH!”

Okay, Iggy, let’s start again. The blog doesn’t have tens of thousands of followers.

“Thousands is less than millions, and… um… purple is less than thousands? Spoon? No, wait.”

Iggy –

“I can count to five sometimes.”

The blog has eighty-two followers.

“Eighty-two followers?”

Yep.

“Oh. Okay. Is that a lot?”

No, it’s not a lot at all.

“Oh.”

Most people don’t see the pictures I post, so you have nothing to worry about. You’re extremely anonymous.

“So there aren’t millions of people all clamoring for me?”

Nope. Hardly anyone sees you.

“Oh. Um… that’s fine. Eighty-two is a nice number, I guess.”

I’m glad you feel that way.

“‘Cause I suppose having an adoring public might be okay, but it could probably get overbearing after a while.”

That’s a good perspective to have.

“Ugh.”

What’s wrong?

“Only eighty-two followers?!”

Where are you going?

“Clearly your photos aren’t that interesting if we only have eighty-two followers.”

Wait, what are you doing?

“Give me a second, let me get comfortable. Okay, quick, get this shot!”

What on earth –

“Come on! A fluffy mini Schnauzer with a ukulele on his head! That should get the blog some eyeballs!”

I thought you didn’t want –

“Shut up and take the picture!”

Ugh. Fine.

“Lemme know the numbers you get for this one. If this doesn’t work, maybe you could get me some outfits.”

I am not dressing you up, Iggy. Have some dignity.

“I have lots of dignity!”

You sure?

“Plenty!”

Right.

“Millions of dignity!”

That’s not how –

“Purple million and platypus dignity, in fact!”

Okay, then –

“Top that!”

I can’t.

Iggy gets a training aid.

Iggy, are you still my friend?

“No.”

Oh, come on.

“No. Go away. You’re mean.”

Don’t be like that.

“You put a thing on my snout!”

A head collar.

“I hate it!”

I know. You have to get used to it.

“Why?”

Because it’ll stop you from going haywire when you’re out in public.

“I don’t!”

Iggy, you lunge and shriek at other animals and people.

“Do not!”

What do you call what you did at the pet supply store this afternoon?

“I was just saying hi.”

At the top of your lungs.

“Well, the other dogs were really far away. You humans are huge. You have no idea how big that place is to us dogs.”

You freaked out everyone in the store.

“I was being friendly!”

You lunged at them.

“I was greeting them!”

And the non-stop, ear-piercing shrieks?

“I was saying hi!”

They were running for an interior room.

“I was being polite!”

They thought the county set off their tornado warning siren.

“Well, an interior room would be the best place to go if a tornado’s coming.”

The sound shattered the front window.

“What, is there a glass shortage? They can’t get another window?”

The police were called, Iggy.

“Well, it’s their job to aid the citizens of –”

They thought the store was under attack.

“It was just a busted window.”

They notified the Federal government.  Now I need lawyers to somehow convince the United States Department of Homeland Security not to classify you as a weapon.

“Ooh. They should. That would be so badass!”

I’m on the no-fly list now!

“But you can’t go anywhere anyway. I’m adorable and you can’t bear to leave me, right?”

Oh, and did I mention we’re not allowed back into any pet supply stores within a 50 mile radius until you stop shrieking and lunging?

“Wait, what?”

So unless you stop, I have no way to buy you your chewy hedgehogs anymore.

“No more chewy hedgehogs?”

Nope.  No more.

“I’m sorry! I’ll wear the head collar! I promise!”

Good boy.

“Can I have a hedgehog please?”

Will you be my friend again?

“Fine.  You win.”

Good boy.  

Smart shopping.

“What’s that sound?”

Do you like it?

“No. It’s annoying.”

It’s Through a Dog’s Ear, Volume 1.

“What, you mean like Sticking Knitting Needles Through a Dog’s Ear, Volume 1? ‘Cause that’s how annoying it is.”

It’s just classical music.

“What’s it for?”

To relax dogs.

“Which dogs? The stupid ones?”

All dogs.

“Oh. Well, then feed me Friskies and call me a cat, ‘cause this noise is just pissing me off.”

You just yawned, though.

“Huh? Oh. Well, being this annoyed is exhausting.”

Oh, okay. Sure.

“I tell you what. You want me to relax? Feed me jerky and scratch my ears.”

I do that. It doesn’t calm you down.

“You don’t do it long enough!  You keep stopping!”

What?

“You keep coming up with excuses!”

What excuses?

“’What excuses.’ Oh, please. It’s always, ‘No Iggy, I’m typing.’”

Well, if I’m working from home I need to–

“Or ‘No Iggy, I’m trying to sleep,’ or ‘No Iggy, I’m driving,’ or ‘No Iggy, I have to go to work now.’”

Well, if you–

“And then you just stop!  There I am, no jerky, ears unscratched!  You’ve always got some excuse to say ‘No Iggy, no Iggy, no Iggy!’”

Oh, now–

“And what about when I wanna eat the laundry? ‘No Iggy, no Iggy, no Iggy.’ All the time!”

You yawned again.

“Huh? Well… I’m bored! Bored with your excuses!”

Laying down, are you?

“Bored… zzzzzzz…”

Aaaaannd he’s out like a light.  That album might be the best ten bucks I ever spent. 

This is why we can’t have nice things.

“Hmm.  These boots don’t smell familiar.”

They’re new.

“Oh, that explains it. They’re nice.”

Thank you.

“Can I eat them?”

No.

“Okay, I won’t.”

Good.

“How about now?”

No.  You can’t eat them, Iggy.

“Okay, I understand.”

Thank you.

“I’ll wait until you take them off.”

No, you won’t.

“Then I can eat them now?”

No!

“Okay.”  

Okay.

“I can wait.”

No, you can’t eat them at all!

“Oh.  Okay.”

Thank you.

“How about now?”

Ugh.  I’m going inside.

Hello, human. 

Hi, Elwood. 

Nice footwear. 

Thank you, Elwood.

Tasty.

 Dammit.

Watchdog, people.

Iggy, do you hear that?

“Huh?”

That noise.

“Huh?”

Outside. Garbage pickup. You know, loud truck, banging noises, right in front of the house. Shouldn’t you be at the window barking at them and guarding your territory?

“Oh. Yeah. Ufff.”

Gesundheit.

“No, that was it.”

What?

Ufff. Done. Wake me for dinner, will you?”

You’ll be up by then. You get dinner at 8:30 in the evening. You know that.

“I meant your dinner.”

Nope.

“Eh. G’night.”

Yes, Iggy did, in fact, just react to the garbage truck noises in front of the house by opening his eyes, letting out a lazy “ufff,” and staying on the couch.  Because watchdog, people.

Iggy thinks about stuff.

Good boy, Iggy! Get the Kermit!

“Yeaahhh… no.”

What’s wrong, Iggy?

“Nothing.”

Come on, Iggy, you can tell me. What’s bothering you?

“Just… is this it? Eating, sleeping, pooping, chewing? Is this all there is to life?”

Wow, Iggy. I suppose so. But –

“YAAAAYYY! I was SO WORRIED! I’M A HAPPY IGGY! GIMME KERMIT!!”

Oh.  Okay, I’m glad you’re good with that.

“Hell yeah!  This is way better than having a job and doing laundry and stuff!”

Well –

“HA!  You got SO HOSED!”

Great.

Iggy, contrite.

“Hey!  Lemme in!”

No, you can stay out there a little while longer.

“Come on!”

Nope.

“Okay!  You win!”

What was that?  Did you say something?

“You win!”

Anything else?

“Ugh.  Okay.  I’m sorry.”

For what?

“I’m sorry I stole your Zippo.”

A little better.

“And I’m sorry I spilled the container of gasoline.”

Okay, anything else?

“I’m sorry I burned down half the porch.”

Okay.

“Can I come in now?

You can.

“That was scary.  Can I lay on the couch next to you?”

Okay, come on up.

“You know, I just wanted to set fire to the neighbor’s Chihuahua.”

Drop it, Iggy –

“Not even all of him! I just wanted to light the tip of his tail!”

Iggy — 

“Like a fuse!”

Iggy –

“A furry little yip bomb!”

No.

“Ha ha!  ‘Yip yip yip BOOM!'”  

“Heh.  Yeah.”

 Iggy.

“Yeah?”

Get back outside.

“Aw, dammit.”

Sing Along with Iggy.

“Hi reader people!  Iggy here!  Do you like music?  I like music!  Especially CDs.  I know everyone downloads music now, but MP3s just don’t sound the same.  And of course, I can’t chew MP3s.”

 

“Anyway, Karen’s going to have a lot going on today, so I thought instead of her doing the blog, I’d lead everyone in a sing-along.”

That’s nice of you, Iggy, but I really don’t have much I need to do –

“No no no!  It’s okay, I want to!  Just to say thanks, since you adopted me from the rescue and all.”

Aw, Iggy, that’s sweet of you.

“Um… yeah.  Anyway, I thought we could sing a Johnny Cash song.  Is everyone ready?  Okay, let’s sing!  I fell into a burning thing on fire –“ 

Iggy, it’s ‘ring of fire.’

“What?”

It’s ‘ring of fire.’  You said ‘thing on fire.’

“Did I?  Ah… well… actually, um, funny story –“

Iggy, why am I smelling smoke?

“WHAT?  SMOKE?  OH MY GOD.  What smoke?  I dunno?  I wasn’t here?”

 What the hell?! 

“You never spent much time on the porch anyway.” 

AAAAGGGHH!

Iggy welcomes me home, and I give you the last five Very Inspiring Bloggers.

“OHMYGODYOU’REHOME!!!”

Aw Iggy, I missed you too–

“WHADJABUYME?! WHADJABUYME?! WHADJABUYME?! WHADJABUYME?!” 

Oh.  Well.  Sorry, Iggy, I didn’t see any dog toys at IKEA. 

“Then what DID you buy?!” 

Well, I got some cushions for the kitchen chairs — 

“Okay, I’ll chew those!  YAY!!!” 

Hold on, Iggy — 

“OHBOYIGOTCHEWCUSHIONSIGOTCHEWCUSHIONS!!!!”

Wonderful.  While I’m trying to keep Iggy from doing any further damage, here are the last five blogs nominated for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award:

Slightly Chilled Porcupine.  One-panel drawings, offbeat and hilarious.  If you don’t like one, try another — you’re guaranteed to find something that’ll make you laugh out loud.

The Hillbilly Blogger.  Look!  He’s a hillbilly!  He’s a blogger!  He’s Tim Taylor, The Hillbilly Blogger!  Sometimes he writes about little things, sometimes he gets into the deep stuff.  Always a good read.

Harleyquinnly.  A talented young woman whose writing brings me back to when I was her age (not THAT long ago, so stop that) — she captures it perfectly.  In fact, her most recent post talks about her current line of work, and perfectly sums up why I no longer do that particular job. 

Waiting For the Karma Truck.  Very different from Harleyquinnly; for this blogger, a bit more time has passed.  (I’m not sure they’d have been that similar if they were the same age, though, but that’s what’s cool about this — different voices, different viewpoints.  But I digress.)  Beautifully written.  Where I am in life is probably about halfway between Harleyquinnly and Waiting For the Karma Truck, and as time goes on I find myself identifying more and more with WFtKT’s take.  The big difference is that she’s amazing at putting it all into words, whereas I just flail about and wonder what’s going on.  Did I mention that it’s beautifully written?  I did?  Well, I’m right — it is.

And last but not least:

I’m not telling you.  

Find that blog yourself.  Go into my comments section, and click on some commenters’ names.  Or click the gravatars of people who’ve liked my posts, and when you get to their profiles, click the links to their sites.  They’re all good.  You’ll find blogs that inspire you, make you laugh, make you think, make you feel like you’re somewhere else for a while, or just offer you a good read to help you kill some time.  Whatever they do for you, though, you’ll be glad you checked them out.

“Oooh!  Way to stick the landing!”

Thank you, Iggy.

“Oh, you got the gymnastics reference?”

I did.

“I wouldn’t have expected that.”  

Why not?

“Well, I mean, look at you.”

Thanks, Iggy.

“Not exactly athletic.”

Okay, Iggy.

“More sort of roly-poly –“

That’s enough, Iggy.