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Every Dog Has His Day--Even If His Owner Is Stark-Raving Mad.

By Tom Danehy

FEBRUARY 23, 1999:  TWO THINGS YOU should know about, but probably don't if the only sports pages you read are in the local dailies.

1. Some guy in Pakistan did something in a cricket match that's only been done one other time in history. He got all 10 wickets. I have no idea what that means, because thankfully, the sun set on the British Empire decades ago, so we never had to learn how to play that stupid game.

It probably means that he ran the bases without spilling his tea or played an entire game without using the word "quite." It does interest me that only two people have done it in history, so I'm going to look it up. If it's interesting at all, I'll pass it along.

2. Some poor beast with the all-time ridiculous name of Loteki's Supernatural Being won Best in Show at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show. About this we should all be gravely concerned.

When anthropologists gather 10,000 years from now to discuss the strange rituals of 20th-century humans, the Dog Show is easily going to out-distance Woodstock, WWF wrestling and Moonie church mass weddings in overall weird-iosity.

For those of you unfamiliar with the Show, please make a note to watch it on TV next time this year. You will never be the same. Basically, it consists of thousands of normal-appearing adults, dressing up in tuxedos and evening gowns, then putting on tennis shoes so that they can run around an indoor arena with their dogs.

It's virtually impossible to do this without looking completely idiotic, yet on they run, hoping--praying!--that the artificial light of the Madison Square Garden will catch their pooch's hair in just such a way that the Wallace Shawn look-alike in Judge's Row will say, "Oooh!"

As stated, Loteki's Supernatural Being won Best in Show. I even saw that dog while channel-surfing one night. It looks like an average mutt made up to look like a French hooker. All I know is I don't want to see the Hi-teki version of Supernatural Being.

At first I wondered what twisted soul would name a dog "Supernatural Being." But that was before I came across the Welsh Terrier named Sunspryte Just In Thyme. Yes, that's how it's spelled.

Where are all the PeTA dorks when you really need them? If naming a dog Sunspryte Just In Thyme isn't unethical treatment of animals, what is? That's the equivalent of putting a bow-tie on your son Norville and then sending him off to Tucson High. An absolute invitation to a whuppin'.

(By the way, did you see the PeTA dweeb on TV protesting the exhibition of Punxatawny Phil on Groundhog's Day? The moron said that animals shouldn't have to take part in such rituals involuntarily. So how exactly does an animal go about volunteering for such things?)

Anyway, can you imagine what it's like for poor Sunspryte when all the dogs get together for a gabfest?

"No, it's not th-ime. The 'h' is silent. It's pronounced 'time.' It's an aromatic herb or low shrub found in southern Europe, sometimes used as a seasoning. I don't know why they would name me this. I'm still trying to figure out why she wears pearls and Nikes at the same time."

Here's the weirdest part of all. Good old Sunspryte Just In Thyme is officially owned by Beth Bates of Mesa, Arizona, but is also co-owned by Bill Cosby, the never-funny TV sitcom guy. How is a dog co-owned? And why would a dog be co-owned, unless it was part of a divorce settlement or something?

Plus, the poor dog probably has to listen to Fat Albert stories ad nauseam.

Other lowlights:

  • A dog named Dèjá Vu Kobe-San took Best of Breed among bichon frises. I got a headache just trying to catalog all the inherent punchlines.

  • Arinkos Marki's Winning Wager took Best of Breed in the standard, whatever the hell that is. The poor dog is owned by hyphen-person Vicky Stephens-Williams of Phoenix and (gulp!) co-owned by Pat and Kim Jacobs of Tucson.

    That's right. We have doggie co-owners right here in our midst.

  • There's a category called Sporting Group. Those are the dogs usually portrayed playing poker in black-velvet paintings.

  • There is also the Working Group. These are the ones who don't get pedicures.

  • There was a dog named Feel The Wind Blow. Yeah, just stand behind that dude for a few minutes and you'll do more than feel the wind.

  • Instead of the usual beer and pretzels sold at Madison Square Garden, during the Dog Show they sold champagne with strawberries. I guess if you hold the glass up real close to your nose, it'll almost block out the aroma created by 3,000 frightened dogs in an enclosed arena. Not to mention the lingering smell of Marv Albert.

The cruelty is just rampant here. Somebody needs to do something. If I ran that show, I'd make some changes. There would be only four categories: Dogs Named "Spot"; Dogs Named "Rover"; Dogs Named "Buddy"; and Dogs With Yuppified, Creepy Names Who Would Like To Be Unleashed So They Can Go After Their Owner(s). The last part would be the big draw.

No dogs could be co-owned. Heck, dogs shouldn't be "owned," anyway. They should be your homies.

And finally, I'd hire extra security to keep Bill Cosby out of the building. Haven't those poor dogs suffered enough?

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