Tuesday, August 17, 2010

The Human Puppy - Part 1

I can’t be entirely sure, and am well aware that the courts lately have taken a very dim view of recovered memories, but I’ve come to suspect that my wanting to be a human puppy stems from an incident in my childhood. Mother and Pop had gone together on one of their endless romantic getaways, and left me in the care of my Aunt Doreen, whom Mother hated because she’d managed the career in modeling and acting that Mother hadn’t been able to have because of the war — not, of course, that Doreen had ever been in any film for more than a couple of lines, however casting couches she might have been chased around.

Anyway, on the occasion I dimly remember, Mother and Pop dropped me off at the studio of a photographer who was shooting images for advertisements for a manufacturer of hosiery. Doreen was wearing a raincoat when she came downstairs to welcome me, but underneath it she was wearing only a brassiere, panties, a garter belt, and black seamed stockings. The three other models involved in the shoot were all similarly attired. I was too young to be sexually au fait, but I couldn’t help but detect a sort of charge in the air. There was something about the way the photographer kept dabbing his forehead with a handkerchief and licking his lips that I found a little bit odd.

When the “girls,” as he addressed them, paused for a cigarette break (cigarettes were still good for you at the time), I got it into my head for some reason that it would be fun to pretend to be a little puppy. I yipped at Aunt Doreen, and she caught on immediately, looking at the other models in turn (probably winking, though I don’t specifically remember her doing so) and asking, “Did anybody just hear a little dog?” A couple of them giggled, and all played along, scratching me under my chin, petting my head, and tearing off for me bits of the beef jerky on which they’d been snacking.

I just loved it, and was crestfallen, though I wouldn’t have used that word at the time, when the photographer — who, from the smell of him, had fortified himself with a stiff drink during the break — called them back to work.

I forgot all about this for years, until one night when, as a 16-year-old, I was over at my first girlfriend’s parents’ ranch house, and she seemed more interested in playing with her Yorkshire terrier puppy Sparkle than in talking to me. I found myself so wishing I could trade places with him! Unbeknownst to Mother, Pop, and Sis, I bought myself a small box of doggie treats at the local convenience store, and a discounted collar and leash set at Downtown Pet Supply on Main Street on a Tuesday afternoon when I should have been at football practice. I figured Tuesday afternoon was when I was least likely to be observed by a friend of my parents or, worse, a classmate.

I've been teaching myself a new vocabulary word every morning since October 1975, but can’t begin to imagine the words that could even begin to convey how much pleasure those items gave me as a teenager. At neighborhood garage sales, where my male classmates might have foraged for collections of Penthouse or Playboy or Babes in Boots, I was ever on the lookout for used dog supplies. When I moved out of Mother’s and Pop’s into my own two-bedroom apartment, my collection soon came to occupy the whole guest bedroom. The sight of it made some of the dog-loving girls I brought home more willing to heavily pet or even fornicate with me — but there was always something lacking in our lovemaking — at least until I met Angela, the first woman I trusted enough to ask to lead me around on all fours. I can tell you with complete candor that I felt, as we made love afterward, as though I’d never really made love before; when she scratched me behind my ears and whispered, “Come on, boy!” as I began to ejaculate, I felt certain I’d died and gone to heaven.

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