January 30, 2011

Stupid TV Commercial Sunday #5: Hijacked!

Hey it's Rosco here! I felt so bad about not posting a Famous Basset Hound last Friday that I decided to take over Stupid TV Commercial Sunday for Bunsen! Seeing has how his last post was about an awesome commercial, I decided we needed to take this part of our blog in a new direction. This commercial can also serve as a belated Famous Basset Hound Friday post!

This week's stupid commercial/famous basset hound is from Comcast, who used to bring us the internet for our blog until we moved.

First of all, this commercial is obviously dumb because we go with DirecTV for our TV watching needs. It's also dumb because I know this guy from watching TV and he works for the US Postal Service, not some TV company. There's a difference. Thirdly, we hounds would never be fooled by the shady characters that try and sell TV packages these days. We are content to watch squirrels and bunnies instead of dumb people shows, but our parents seem to feel the need to watch things like the news and weather.

So there's your basset-approved Stupid TV commercial!

January 29, 2011

A death in the family

Our regular readers may have noticed that I didn't post a Famous Basset Hound Friday yesterday. While we still have a long list of famous hounds to showcase here at Jowls of Fury, I decided not to post this week, because I was feeling a bit sad. Yesterday I lost a very dear friend.

Let me introduce you to Monsieur Monkeyman.

Monsieur Monkeyman was a stuffed monkey toy that we got at Christmastime. He has a brother named Mr. Green Monkey. Both of them would talk to us and we would play fetch with them. Mssr. Monkeyman had only been with us a short time and he appeared so healthy, but Thursday night his health took a sudden and unexpected turn for the worse. He had a cut on his back that we could not heal up with our licks.

We discovered that there was some kind of infection or something in his back that made noise when you chewed on it. I tried to conduct field surgery and remove the thing. I got it out with success and tried to analyze it using my mouth, but at that point Mssr. Monkeyman passed away. Dad took him and interred his earthly remains in a safe place, and took the infected squeaky thing away from me.

Poor Mssr! We will miss him. We'll have to play fetch a lot more with Mr. Green Monkey now so he doesn't feel lonely after losing his brother.

In memory

January 28, 2011

The dogs are trapped again

As some of my cat cohorts have complained, the dogs can sometimes be pests. Nibbler sort of blows it out of proportion though - they really aren't that bad, once you get used to them. He's just a big wuss who runs from them. And of course as soon as you run it's over.

But sometimes they are a bit much. We used to live in a place where the gates they put up fit perfectly in the door, and we could escape them and taunt them from the other side without worrying. Not so with this new place. Now don't get me wrong, I like this place better, but the gate issue was a problem for the last three months.

Not anymore! There's a new gate and it was designed with cat escape in mind! It fits snugly in the doorframe, and there is a spot on the bottom that lets cats get through it when they have to avoid unchecked dog aggression. Kinda nice. This will help cats with ample derrières (Nibbler) get around as well, because he was having trouble getting over the gates.

The only downside is it also has a door for people. It makes it easier for them to get through the gate (despite being huge and having long legs they are surprisingly poor jumpers and fall on their behinds all the time). I used to secretly enjoy watching dad trip over the old gates.

January 26, 2011

Weird Word Wednesday #3

This week's pointless human idiom sounds unpleasant. Sometimes people will say that something is a sight for sore eyes.

Sight for sore eyes? First of all, why are your eyes sore? I've never had sore eyes. I would go see a doctor if I did. Second, what kind of sight is specific for sore eyes? Are the sights supposed to be restorative, to make the eyes less sore? Or are they sights that are somehow responsible for sore eyes? Whatever you can look at that makes your eyes sore, I want no part of it. Then again we are talking about humans, and their eyes are nowhere near as good as cat eyes (especially in the dark).

According to the humans at The Straight Dope, the saying takes some obscure definition of the word sore to heart. In this context, "sore" actually means "afraid". Of course, how obvious. Human words can't just have one meaning, they have to have five or six increasingly unknown meanings and uses. So instead of saying "I am glad to see that, it makes me less scared", they say "That is a sight for sore eyes".

Humans are just plain dumb. SAY WHAT YOU MEAN!

January 23, 2011

Stupid TV Commercial Sunday #4

This week's stupid TV commercial is somewhat of a technicality, but it still bothers me.

Beggin' Strips

It's stupid only because it fails to capitalize on an obvious TV-watching market that also happens to love bacon: cats. Although we are a lot more casual when it comes to wanting bacon than the dog in this commercial, we, too, enjoy that crispy delicious greasiness. I always come out and make sure there isn't something that drops on the floor when dad is cooking on the oven. At least I used to, until the dogs came into the picture, making it a bit more difficult to get any goodies (they're like vaccuum cleaners I swear).

So anyway, this commercial isn't so much stupid as it is poorly marketed. I'm signing off, hoping tonight is a BLT dinner night.

January 21, 2011

Famous Basset Hound Friday #3

This week's famous basset hound is an old favorite: Droopy Dog! Droopy is a cartoon character created in 1943. He is probably the most famous animated basset hound, although there are other notable cartoon hounds that made our list.

The Wikipedia entry for Droopy has this to say:

"... Droopy moved slowly and lethargically, spoke in a jowly monotone, and, though he did not look like much, was shrewd enough to outwit his enemies and, when finally roused to anger, capable of beating adversaries twice his size with a comical thrashing... "

Layla and I agree! We bassets may not look smart or strong, but we are really just playing it cool the whole time! Droopy's first cartoon was called Dumb-Hounded, and you can watch it on YouTube if you want.

Droopy was also in Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, which dad says is one of the best animated movies of all time. He doesn't get much screen time though, but he does get to wear a pretty cool costume. I couldn't find that video on YouTube though, but you should definitely watch the movie sometime. There's a basset hound in it after all!

So there's your Famous Basset Hound for this week!

January 20, 2011

Weird Word Wednesday #2

Before any of you even start with me, I know it's not Wednesday. I napped this past Wednesday. That is my prerogative as a cat.

The latest Weird Word Wednesday has to do with horses. There are actually a few strange sayings that deal with horses, as evidenced by a recent Dinosaur Comics entry. One that they missed is "Dead Ringer".

This odd saying is used as a way to state that someone/something is nearly identical to another thing. For instance "He is a dead ringer for that other guy". Rather than say "He looks like that other guy", humans use some strange bit of language that really makes no sense. I have been Googling away trying to determine the origin of this little idiom and actually found two different possibilities.

Possibility 1. Dead ringer describes a common occurrence in olden times, when people who were so sick they appeared to be dead were interred and buried, only to wake up later and find themselves stuck in a coffin. Forward-thinking morticians started putting strings in those coffins and attaching them to a bell at the surface, so the not-dead person could pull on the string and patiently wait to be dug up. How this eventually went from meaning "More or less an almost zombie" to "looks pretty much like something else" is a testament to how dumb human language is. In cat-ese, "meow" always means "meow".

Possibility 2. Dead ringer describes the practice of trying to trick bookies in a horse race. This one actually makes more sense, but isn't quite as cool as almost-zombies. Devious horse racers would have two horses that look almost alike, and run the slower one for a few races, convincing everyone that it is really slow and will likely become glue before too long, only to spring the faster horse on an unsuspecting crowd when the odds are really low (and the payoff high) in a big race. This seems a lot more plausible.

So, this is a Weird Word entry that actually makes a little bit of sense, although it would be easier to say "similar appearance" than "dead ringer". SAY WHAT YOU MEAN!

January 18, 2011

She knows my name

The other night when I came upstairs to get some mama time, I realized a horrifying thing. dog2 knows my name. She knows my name. Mama said "Nibs" like she used to when I came in the room, and dog2 got up from her sleeping spot to stare at me. Of course I narrowly escaped with my life. Now I don't feel safe anywhere.

January 17, 2011

Mango Minster Entry #2 - Rosco as a Cracker Dog

So I looked at the Mango Minster categories and decided I best fit into the Cracker Dog group. Here's why:

  1. Am I a terrier? No, but I have been methodically exercising my legs to let me jump really high (for a basset hound). I can jump on the bed, and that is saying something for a dog that only has 5 inches of ground clearance! Dad never has to help me, unlike my lazy sister. I also like to terrorize the cats (see below).
  2. Zoomies? I run super fast all the time, especially when there are things to chase. Every once in awhile I run for the heck of it. Below, I am chasing a dog at the 2010 GABR waddle.
  3. Dig gigantic holes? Not really, but I do have to dig in my bed every time I lay down in it.
  4. Shredding? I have to check the trash periodically to shred tissue paper. SOMEONE has to do it around here. I am also fond of socks and underwear.
  5. Flinging/yapping at the door? I don't 'yap'. I howl. There ought to be a basset-specific category at Mango Minster!
  6. Spring-loaded legs? Dad calls me a torpedo sometimes. See #1.
  7. Tennis ball spaz? We play chase every night now, and sometimes I even let mom and dad catch me. Other times I hide my toys from them so they can't throw them.
So, all in all, I am the epitome of basset hound cracker-dogness. The video below says it all.

Mango Minster Entry #1 - Layla as the Doggie Diva

We only just started blogging, and we found this great site written by a humongous dog named Mango. Mango weighs more than dad, which is saying a lot, because he is getting kind of lazy lately and hasn't been taking us for walks (hint hint). Anyway, Mr. Mango runs a show called Mango Minster, and it is designed for those of us dogs who don't want to go through the training and rigorous practice involved in the fancier dog shows. Plus, we don't have weird owners.

So I am writing my entry for Mango Minster 2011. Hopefully I can still be considered! I am going for the Doggie Diva category. My qualifications are below.

Doggie Diva Qualifiers
  1. Huzzy photos all over the internet? No way! I made sure to destroy most of the evidence of me in compromising situations. All my photos are family-friendly.
  2. Wardrobe bigger than my humans? Not exactly. We have more costumes than our humans but that is mostly their fault. They like to dress us up for Halloween and Christmas, but they haven't figured out yet that we hate stuff on our heads. Also, I was Rosie the Riveter at the 2010 GABR basset waddle, but that was for a good cause and it made me famous.
  3. Shockingly embarrassing outfits? See #2.
  4. Work for praise? Absolutely not. I only work for treats and chew bones.
  5. Howling/moaning/headbutting? Not exactly. But I have trained dad to pick me up on the bed, even though I can do it myself, and I usually take his warm spot and rearrange the pillows to my exact specifications. There are lots of times where I sleep on the couch and he doesn't.
  6. Own a crown or tiara? Hmmm.... well like I said in #2, we don't really like stuff on our heads... but a tiara might be just the thing...
  7. At the end of the day....? Not only is it all about me at the end of the day, it's all about me ALL of the day.

January 16, 2011

Stupid TV Commercial Sunday #3

This week's Stupid TV Commercial Sunday is probably one of the dumbest commercials I've ever seen.

Viva Viagra.

Really? I won't ever have to worry about this sort of thing, but apparently some human men have problems with arousal. Not me - I'm something of a Catsanova around the house, and have wooed Beaker several times. She just has trouble admitting that she likes me. Anyway, those poor, pitiful men who need Viagra take a little blue pill and call their doctors if they have an erection lasting longer than 4 hours. They also should be aware of the side effects, up to and including death and their arms falling off. This is all well and good, but this commercial is just plain stupid. A bunch of guys who have this problem probably don't get together in the local bar and break out into an impromptu jam session about it. In fact, it's so stupid, I can't think of a better way to end this blog entry than this sentence.

January 14, 2011

Famous Basset Hound Friday #2

This week's famous hound is Pokey, from the famous dog-reality show Lassie! Once upon a time, Lassie was called 'Jeff's Collie'.

In this episode, Lassie meets an awesome dog named Pokey. Pokey gets a ball (which Layla and I approve of) from the kids, who were playing baseball. Not being content with just playing ball, Pokey also tries to play chess with some adults. Unfortunately, they had failed to set their chess game at an approved basset hound height, which led to Pokey inadvertently knocking the game over while he was trying to assist them with their next move. This leads to trouble, and insinuations that 'no good, floppy-eared hounds' might be taken to the pound if they aren't trained. Hopefully there's a happy ending!

I wonder why they didn't go with the obvious and name this show 'Pokey's kid, and his best collie friend Lassie, and a couple of grumpy old guys in overalls'?

January 9, 2011

Stupid TV Commercial Sunday #2

Honey Bunches of Oats

Our second winner in the stupid TV commercial category are the Honey Bunches of Oats spots.

These have been around for years, and they showcase a bunch of really exuberant Post Cereal employees raving about their product. Now, I'm all for employee happiness on the job, but if I were a new hire at the Honey Bunches of Oats plant, I would be a little suspicious about drinking the company coffee, because these people are way too excited about a bunch of processed wheat and grains. Some of the older commercials featured a van or an RV or something that drove around and offered strangers on the street a bowl of cereal. I don't think I would ever eat a bowl of cereal given out by strangers on the street. Moist cat food, perhaps (only the good stuff), but definitely not cereal.

January 7, 2011

Famous Basset Hound Friday #1

We are going to start a tradition of celebrating famous basset hounds around here, since Layla and I are on our way to becoming famous basset hounds ourselves (our blog has over 1,000 hits already). We've been doing some research and have come up with a big list of famous hounds. Here is our first entry!

Flash, the sidekick of Roscoe P. Coltrane, of Hazzard County

Flash was the most law-abiding hound you ever met. He was also probably the only honest citizen in Hazzard County, as everybody else has either been arrested for making moonshine, was a corrupt politician, or had some other common human shortcoming. He even knew to bark at the evil Boss Hogg! Honestly, who wears such a ridiculous outfit? But poor Flash was subjected to a lot of car chases, which we know from experience can lead to basset hounds being thrown around the back end of SUV's a lot! I guess he got to wear a seatbelt in the story. However, it is all on TV, and it turns out that Flash's REAL name was "Sandy". The people who wrote the Dukes of Hazzard couldn't make up their minds if Flash was a boy or girl, either. Anyway, Sandy didn't have to get thrown around during car chases, because she had a stunt double named "Flush" that was used in dangerous scenes!

So that is our first Famous Basset Hound.

January 5, 2011

Weird Word Wednesday #1

Well, if Bunsen gets a day to himself each week, then I'm going to have one too!

MY weekly ranting will be about strange phrases. I hear a lot of them, and they have made me wonder how human beings ever get their point across, when the words they use don't mean what they think they mean.

The first weekly example is 'To Come in Handy', or 'It Came in Handy'.

People use this phrase to basically mean 'I am glad I kept/obtained/received some object, because it was useful for some task or objective I did not realize I would need to complete or achieve'. Rather than say that, they use some obscure phrase. I have been Googling my paws off for the last ten minutes and have decided that people just don't know how to use their own language.

What is a handy? How does one come into it? SAY WHAT YOU MEAN!

January 2, 2011

Stupid TV Commercial Sunday #1

So this is my first post to this blog. I wanted to wait and let all the other cats and dogs get their turn before I made my contribution. I've also been thinking about what I wanted to add to this thing, and I finally made my decision the other day.

I watch a lot of TV. TV can be a wonderful way to augment a nap (I take a lot of those, too). Plus, sometimes dad watches nature shows, which on our HDTV is almost as good as watching birds in the window. Once there was a show about lynxes, and I had to strut my stuff in front of the TV to show that big lynx who was boss. The outcome? He left.

Unfortunately, there are a lot of really stupid commercials on TV. When you are a brilliant cat (like me) stupid commercials that insult your intelligence make you wonder why you even bother watching TV in the first place. If I could figure out how to turn it off or on I would. Humans use a remote, but half the time the remote is across the room on the other furniture that I'm not on (I can't interrupt my nap), and the other half of the time I don't know how to operate the remote anyway. As I was holding my paws over my ears when a particularly annoying commercial came on the other day, I realized I had my blog entry idea.

So, I will be periodically posting what I like to call "Stupid TV Commercial Sunday". Clever, no? It will be posted on Sundays, but probably not every Sunday. Cat naps take precedence over most things, after all. So, without further adieu... here's the inaugural Stupid TV Commercial Sunday.

Residence Inn by Mariott commercials.

These have been on TV for awhile. They use people who are contortionists, balance experts, and other weirdos. While they are not particularly insulting to your intelligence, they beg the question: why would a hotel that wants you to stay there long-term use commercials that remind you of the circus? Do circus people stay there? Will there be a bunch of carnies at the complimentary breakfast? Will there be seals in the pool? Actually the seals in the pool part would be alright. Also, are there birds in a circus? I wouldn't mind having a room next to the birds. They could even share my room with me! And I bet there would be mice. I have seen movies with circus mice that do all kinds of jumping and dancing acts. I would approve of sharing my room with the circus mice, but the plate spinners and fire breathers can sleep in their cars, thank you.