Saturday, September 3, 2011

Marby and Me trumps Marley and Me

Years ago a singer named Bobby Vinton had a huge hit with a song called Beautiful Brown Eyes. Vinton sang the praises of a wonderful girl who lacked the blue eyes typical of classic beauties of that era.


I must confess that there is a Beautiful Brown  Eyes in my life as well. Her name is Marby.


Five years ago on the day that my mother passed away I was feeling pretty low. My son and daughter drove 75 miles west to find a golden retriever puppy. Marby was the runt of the litter and had been struggling to nurse. It seems that there were  a lot more pups in the  litter than pumps at mother nature's nursing station.

                They dubbed her  "Marby" as a tribute to my unusual middle name "Marlborough".

My kids fell in love with her as she struggled without success while constantly maintaining a positive attitude. She may have been striking out, but according to the kids, she had a smile on her face.

Ever since that day  she came into our house, Marby has given us a message of unconditional love.


Wherever I am, Marby wants to be there. Whatever I'm doing, Marby wants to do what I am doing.


Marby cannot say a word but she communicates in forms of pure poetry. She expresses her love frequently through subtle contact. Whenever I am at rest, she doesn't just  sit near me. She expresses love by sitting on my foot, or resting her chin on my knee, or just standing next to me with her shoulder pushing against me.


Marby is such a gentle soul that she rarely shows  aggression.


Marby wants to be friends with every single living creature, from the smallest bug to the most hulking delivery man.

 A few of the other dogs in the neighborhood are not interested in this retriever who always bears the olive branch, but Marby never gives up with her message of peace and play.


But that's her personality. Just like the puppy who couldn't  fight her way past her bigger and stronger brothers and sisters, she continues the quest with a smile.


Occasionally her Gandhi-like ovations toward potential friends gets her into trouble.


She's a smart dog and she realizes that skunks carry a devastating weapon. Despite this, she believes that she just needs to find the right approach and soon she'll be having afternoon tea with Mr. black and white.


I've explained the bitter truth to her. There are people with whom you can not negotiate. Yet she still looks at me with those brown  eyes so idealistic that I know she will continue to try to convert the neighborhood terrorists.


It's okay, Marbs. As we share a tomato juice bath at 2:30 in the morning, your beautiful brown eyes tell the whole story.


I'll never love blue eyes again.

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