Class Dismissed – #1LinerWeds

The bandana is from the AIIM Conference party in San Antonio a few years ago.

I decided to get closer to the “one line” portion of Linda’s challenge. Of course, it won’t be one line, because – everybody say it with me – it doesn’t make any sense without the backstory.

Thurty-seven years ago, The Editor and I had begun raising our first Irish Setter, Mitzi. I had grown up with dogs, and I had had dogs as an adult before meeting The Editor, but she had never had a dog. Since she was to be the primary care giver, we thought it would be a good idea for her and Mitzi to enroll in a training course. We did our research (1983, folks, that means Yellow Pages and newspapers) and we selected a woman who held classes one night a week, for eight weeks.

We waited until Mitzi was old enough, and we enrolled. The lessons were held in a large barn, maybe a dozen or so dogs. I’ll spare you (and I’ll avoid embarrassing The Editor) the details. Suffice it to say, we dropped out. The reasons were 70% Irish Setter and 30% the fact that The Editor was pregnant. However, the enrollment fee hadn’t been wasted. The first lesson, the most important lesson, according to the instructor, had been committed to memory. The first thing the instructor told the human students was to:

“Get down to the level of your dog and praise your dog!”

Mitzi figured that was all that was necessary.

This post is part of Linda G. Hill’s fun weekly series One-Liner Wednesday. If you have a one-liner, I’d encourage you to join in on the fun. You can follow this link to participate and to see the one-liners from the other participants.


  1. Your construction photos could have been taken in our area. With less traffic, I think the road crews are working overtime. I like your bandanna, Dan. We can’t be too careful these days. Stay well!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Your bandana is quite stylish there, Dan. I picked up some groceries yesterday, and I’d guess around 50% had face coverings on of some sort, and I thank everyone. On my way, I wanted to stop at recycling. They are only letting 10 cars in at a time. We had tried Saturday, but the line was backed up maybe 25 cars out on the road. I tried on the way to the store, same backup. On the way home, I checked, and I could actually get onto the property and wait so I gave it a try. I couldn’t figure out what was causing such a line until I got in and realized about 6 of the 10 cars allowed were all dumping huge amounts of leaves. I guess everyone home decided to rake.

    Liked by 1 person

    • This bandana reminds me of a night with lots of friends, lots of fun and margarita stands and taco stands everywhere you turned.

      This dump is yard waste only. They were only letting three cars in at a time. I waited until about 10:00, and I was able to get right in. The nicest thing about being retired is not having to do this stuff on the weekend.

      I hope you’re staying safe and healthy, Judy.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. All of your photos of Maddie make me a little jealous, Dan. Having a dog like that might make this extended period of social distancing a little more tolerable. :) I have the same little purple flowers as you do–I believe they are called vincas and I consider them to be “ground cover,” not weeds.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Keep in mind that you’re only seeing the best side of Maddie, Mike. We love her, but she is quite a challenge. She has neurological issues and requires a specific approach. Sitting with her helps to calm her down. We do enjoy it, but it is necessary for her. That’s why we bundle up and sit in the winter.

      Thanks for the info on the flowers. We treat anything that blooms as a flower. The bees love them and they’re nice to look at.

      Take care.


  4. Used to be if you had a bandanna on your face, the police stopped you – now – you’re being a safe citizen…. who knew? :)

    This is a good time for some people to receive instruction…..

    Liked by 6 people

  5. Why do dogs and cats seem to like stealing our spots on the couch? Could it be we’ve warmed it up for them? Or are they guarding our place? Mysteries of the universe, Dan…

    Getting to the level of my cats would require me to either lay down on the floor or climb onto the cat tree. I think I’ll stay where I am!

    I enjoy seeing the flowers pop and Mr Squirrel return in your neck of the woods. Here, the green of crocus is starting to show itself and I’ve been listening to singing birds and frogs for the past week through open windows. It’s a wonderful time of year in nature and that is one bright spot in the current situation.

    Happy Wednesday, Dan. Have a fabulous day!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Maddie seems to take that spot to tell me “we’re done sitting” it at least I am. Sometimes, I get up, refill my coffee and return and she’s still on her side. Other times, gone. I liked the sun on her head.

      The sights and sounds of spring are most welcome. Enjoy them, Mary. Pretty soon we will wake fringes this bad dream. Until then, stay safe and be well.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. So jealous of your black squirrel. I’ve never seen one… but I
    keep looking.
    Nice gangsta shopping attire. Maybe next time go for something more butch that carnation pink.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Love your very stylish and functional bandanna mask!

    Laughed out loud reading about the dog obedience lessons. We’ve all been to those classes with similar results. My Golden Retriever Mix, Casey, taught ME how to heel because I couldn’t get it. How embarrassing!!

    That last shot of Maddie is precious. Good to see Smokey out and about. I agree with GP Cox, the beautiful purple blossom looks like a vinca vine. And your neighbor’s forsythia is magnificent!

    Virus or no virus, Spring has sprung! Hallelujah!!
    🐾Ginger 🐾

    Liked by 1 person

    • Good to know we aren’t the only crew to struggle with obedience school. Mitzi felt we learned the important lesson. The rest was probably unnecessary. Like those extra parts after assembling an IKEA bookcase.

      Thanks for concurring on the vinca vine. It’s creeping in under the fence from our neighbor’s yard. A welcome intruder.

      Spring is gaining a strong foothold. Nothing can stop it now.

      Take care, Ginger. We’ll get through this.


  8. We are getting closer to spring in these parts, but a way to go yet. Also closer to wearing a bandana – we do not engage with people and when we do, it is not at close range.

    The blue groundcover is vinca or periwinkle – I enjoy it in a garden, but it can be a tad… let’s say “exuberant “.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for the info on vinca, Maggie. This bunch is migrating from our neighbor’s yard, but it’s welcome here.

      Spring is, with it’s sights and sounds is most welcome. I think this year, more than ever.

      Take care, Maggie, especially if you get to the point where masks are required.

      Liked by 1 person

    • It was so funny, Ally. Obedience school dropouts. Mitzi eventually learned all the things she needed to know, and she trained us and caused us to fall in love with these redheads. She was the first of four.

      Take care.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Uh oh. MuMu has the paw raised, so I am guessing your response was, “Of course, I’m gonna brush you.” Yellow pages and newspapers….doesn’t that sound so weird now. I notice our local newspaper no longer publishes wedding/engagement announcements. I guess that is all on Facebook now. If I take away one thing from a seminar, I consider it a success. I think you, The Editor, and Mitzi did just fine.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s a great point, Lois. I always used to consider training a success if I learned one good thing. We weren’t dropouts, we just knew when to count our blessings and go.

      Of course I brushed MuMu. It’s in the contract :(

      I remember when I had to find a job on the east coast while living in Seattle. I went to the library and read out-of-town newspapers, and I when to Pacific Northwest Bell’s main office, where they had phone books from every major city. It took two days, but I eventually managed to set up four interviews.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. I attended an event in San Antonio where there were endless margaritas and what seemed like a hundred different food stations. It was held at La Villita and there were endless margaritas, Coronas and what seemed like a hundred different food stations. What a night it was. Thanks for the memory. I enjoyed the story about training. We had the same deal. We were going t take a training course and had one lesson. The instructor hurt her back and that was the end of it. We get down to Twiggy’s level by laying flat on the floor. 😁

    Liked by 1 person

    • I was thinking it would be pretty hard to get down to Twiggy’s level, unless she’s on the back of the couch.

      I remember thinking that it was a good thing all I had to do was walk back to the hotel. About 10 of us must have had that same thought. We all got stopped at the gate for trying to take one last margarita for the road, we all finished them, and we all wished we were far enough away to call a cab. Wearing that bandana makes me remember that night and I instantly feel good.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Ha! I’m going to try that on Benji, even though he’s not an Irish Setter. We had an Irish Setter years ago, when my oldest son was a toddler. He was a great dog. Dum as a brick, but very loving!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ours have always seem dumb, but they were all very cunning. Maddie is savant-like intelligent. Some things, she just can’t grasp, but other things, she amazing. Mitzi was so gentle with our daughter, even through the two’s.


  12. Wow, that forsythia is major! Ours are as scraggly as a pre-teen boy’s attempt at growing a beard. Those Maddie shots are so glamorous, they look like she’s going on a dating site. They capture the nobility of her profile, and the highlights in her beautiful red locks. Any sightings of Walker Lady lately?

    Liked by 1 person

    • We haven’t seen the dreaded WL since the weekend – I’m good with that. I’m going to assume that she walks on a schedule and adjust ours to avoid her. Five more minutes at home should do it, as we consistently see her at the end of her walk.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. I really like that pattern on the bandanna. It’s a great souvenir and now face mask.

    I laughed out loud when I read your story about obedience classes. Diva Dog and I did those for 3 years! I wanted her to get her canine good citizen certification. It was more a class for me than her!

    I really like those specular highlights on the wires. They’re like little jewels on a chain.

    Maddie’s smile is ear to ear on her walk. That made me smile too.

    Liked by 1 person

    • The bandana is places around San Antonio, including the Alamo. There’s a great thing to wear into a battle I have to win ;-)

      We never tried obedience school again. Once was demoralizing enough.

      I’m glad you liked that photo of the wires. It’s not a great subject, but I like the effect.

      Maddie is always a happy pup at the start of our walk.

      Take care, Deborah. I hope you and He Man and your kids/grandkids are all well.

      Liked by 1 person

    • We’ve had varying success with the four that we’ve had. Maddie is a lost cause, but that’s because she has some serious neurological issues. We accommodate her personality as best as we can.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Seems a solid first lesson to me. We used to have bandanas around the house from when the kids were little – from playing dress up I guess – and I swear, wouldn’t you know we tossed them before the move?? Who knew.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s called cleaning-karma – as soon as you throw it away, you need it.

      First and last lesson, but we’ve always remembered it. Getting down to the level of your dog is easy. Getting back up gets harder with age ;-)


  15. Coolest bandanna ever! We’ve made several of those masks with extras B used for work. Not as cool, just plain ole red and blue. The picture of Maggie at the end … level of your dog is simply stunning. Regal and queenly.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It my favorite. The bandana reminds me of a very nice evening, when friends could gather freely, drink heavily and overeat. Maddie is almost a different dog when she’s sitting in the sun on “her deck” surveying her domain.

      Liked by 1 person

  16. Was getting to know a dog trainer. But after I visited her house, I had made up my mind to never ever get a dog:) The dogs she trained though were violent, and I know not every dog is viscous. Like your bandana!.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Some dogs are trained to be aggressive, some have a natural inclination. Maddie can get aggressive if she gets confused or startled. She has issues. We work to control her, isolate her and to accommodate her needs.

      The bandana brings back some happy memories for me.

      I hope you are working to stay well.


      • Yeah you told me about Maddie, poor doggie! Since my painting is done at home, the only effect the virus had on me was one and a half week looking for toilet paper, lol!. Am fortunate, I don’t have to do anything to stay well!

        Liked by 1 person

  17. I was never a dog person. Actually, the issue is that majority of my family (I mean uncles and aunts and grandpas and grandmas) all lived in Mumbai. So, there was never an opportunity for us to tour out of the city. Only when my sister got married outside Mumbai, I got the chance to explore the countryside. I got to see train tunnels, mountains, streams and rivers, unique flowers and plants and birds and so on. It was my introduction to a different world altogether. My bro-in-law had 5 dogs and I must say I was freaking scared of them. 3 Pomeranians, 1 German Shepherd and 1 Indian Pariah. My sister’s sis-in-law had 2 bulldogs and they almost made me piss in my pants as they sniff me. However, I started to like them all after sometime. I already told you about the German Shepherd (Sunny) in my previous comment. I used to relax with him on the porch. And those two bulldogs, they were mother and son in relation. The mom bulldog was white as milk and she was named Roshni (which means brightness) and her son was wooden brown and he was named Samson. Roshni was a sweetheart like Maddie. She would just chill out and do her routines. Samson was an attention seeker. If I don’t play with him or pat him or talk to him he would keep on barking. Sunny, the German Shepherd was kind of dutiful. He would keep a close watch on the chickens loitering around the backyard and would not let them go out the fence. He will not hunt them but scare them to stay inside. He will run to the wooden gate outside if he hears someone opening the gate. He will ensure that the buffaloes walk in line and don’t stray from their path. He was the Alpha so he would made sure that other dogs are keeping the watch at night. In the evening hours, he would want to play with us kids. So, we let him play fetch the ball. Those are some of my summer holiday moments with the dogs.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Our forsythia is pretty much past the bloom stage and there brilliant green leaves now.

    That first lesson is a good one to know. Maybe that’s why small dogs aren’t impressed with me. I can’t get on my haunches with a dog because my balance is off.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I had to prune our forsythia very late in the year, and I lopped off a lot of buds. So, I’m enjoying the neighbor’s.

      Maddie does seem to like it when we’re at her level (or she’s at ours, on the couch).

      Liked by 1 person

  19. Aw, hehe! When I get down on the floor with Sadie, she automatically rolls over and gives me the tummy. We had a much larger dog when I was pregnant. I remember. And how.

    Liked by 2 people

    • When those lessons started, she didn’t know she was pregnant, she just thought she didn’t feel well. It was funny at times, and frustrating at times, but they bonded anyway and she turned out to be a very good dog.

      Liked by 1 person

  20. One of the first things preschool teachers learn is to physically get down to the level of the child. And of course praise the child. Excellent advice all the way around. Great story, Dam. Love Maddie’s photo, too.

    Liked by 2 people

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