Saturday, November 16, 2013

Howard to the Dog Park

My dear faithful readers I have a request.  I am looking for someone who is able and willing to illustrate my Howard series ala A. A, Milne (Winnie the Pooh) or Theodore Guisel (Dr. Seuss).  If you know of someone who fits the bill, please point them in my direction.  Bob

Howard to the Dog Park

"OK, Howard, let’s take you to the dog park.”

Why does the man want to take me somewhere, all of a sudden?  I have no idea, but it sounds like fun

“Felix, Maggie, stay out of trouble!”

“Alright, Howard, you stay out of trouble too.  There are some really big dogs out there.”

It’s not the big dogs I need to worry about.  It’s the A-type Chihuahuas one has to be careful with. 

Hi!  I’m Howard, who are you?

“I’m Alexander.  I haven’t seen you here before.”

 “Howard seems to have made friends with that Boston terrier.  It looks like there may be trouble, though.  He’s moving up to a big Rottweiler”

Hi!  I’m Howard, who are you?

“What’s it to you?”

Well, this is my first time here.  I am meeting a lot of new friends and I like to remember their names.

“I’m Roger.”

Great, Roger, would you like to introduce me to your friends?

“Sure, why not?”

“That’s Howard for you.  He makes friends easily: a cat, a parrot, blue birds, a Boston terrier, a burly Rottweiler…”

Thank you, Roger.  Your friends all seem to respect you greatly

It looks like the man wants me to come to him.  Do you and Alexander want to tag along?


"Of course"

“Howard, I’m going to throw this tennis ball and I want you to get it and bring it back to me,”

Wow, I knew exactly what he wanted and I did it,  He seems to be very pleased.

“Fetch!” “Fetch!” “Fetch!” “Fetch!” 

Hey, Alexander and Roger, why don’t you two join in?


"Of course"

“Fetch!” “Fetch!” “Fetch!” “Fetch!” 

That Alexander can’t run as fast as Roger or I, but he sure can turn corners sharper than either of us.

“OK, Howard, it’s time to go home.  You seem to have enjoyed it and made a couple of good friends.  We’ll have to do it again, soon.”

Robert Niel Beatie – November 7, 2013

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Introducing Maggie to Ben and Helen

Introducing Maggie to Ben and Helen

Well, Maggie, I’ve figured out how to open the door to let you out.  You probably would not manage to get through the doggie door.  I’ve practiced a couple of times so I know I can do it,  It’s a good thing that the door handles are levers and not knobs.

So when the man goes out grocery shopping I will introduce you to Ben and Helen.  But remember it is important that you are back in before the man gets back.  Otherwise we will be in big trouble.

OK, here goes.  Just remember it is important to get back before the man comes home.

Ben, Helen, this is Maggie.  She has wanted to meet you for some time.

“Welcome, Maggie, Helen and I have heard a lot about you.”

“Yes, Maggie, Howard has good things to say about you.  These are our three boys, Charles, Henry, and Wilber.”

I’ll bow out now and go see what Felix is doing.  Don’t forget your time constraint, Maggie.

Hi, Felix, how are you feeling after saving Wilbur?

“I’m feeling pretty good about it.  Especially since I have pretty much mended fences with Helen.  How are things going with Maggie and the other birds?”

They seem to have hit it off well.

Hey!  What’s all the commotion out there?  They are all calling for help.  It looks like a big orange cat is trying to eat the birds. I’d better go out and chase him away.

“No that’s the neighbor cat, Samuel.  It’s my job to chase him off!”

“OK, Samuel, leave my friends alone!”

“Well, Felix, you seem to have abandoned your genetic background, making friends with birds instead of eating them.  You and what army are going to make me leave?”

“If necessary, Helen will back me up.  Let me tell you, you do not want to get on her bad side.  Now leave while you still can!”

“No, I think I will eat Helen first and then deal with you.”

“That does it.  Here I come!”

I just came out to make sure that the situation is resolved.  It looks like Felix has the upper hand.

“Felix, who is that pit bull?  I didn’t realize that you had that backup, in addition to Helen.”

“That’s Howard.  He’s a friend of the birds and mine too.”

“Enough!  I know when I’m outnumbered.”

Well, Felix, you seem to have saved the day again!

Hurry, Maggie, you had better get back in the house now.  I can hear the man’s car in the garage.  Again, good work, Felix.

“Yes, Felix, Helen and I must thank you again.”

“Daddy’s home!  Have you kids been in some kind of mischief?  You all seem a bit more reserved rather than your usual enthusiastic greeting.  Everything seems to be in place so I guess not.”

Robert Niel Beatie – September 20, 2013

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Raising a Family

Hi, Ben.  How is it going?  I see that you built the nest where you thought you would.

“Hello, Howard.  It is going very well.  Helen is now sitting on three eggs that should hatch any day.”

That’s great, Ben!  Let me know when the big day arrives.

“Will do.”

Another beautiful day to get some sun in the yard.

Hi, Ben.

“Howard, we now have three boys: Charles, Henry, and Wilber. Helen and I are going to be busy for the next couple of weeks finding enough worms to feed them.   That’s why we stopped at three.  Four or more we might not be able to feed them.”

Well, good luck to you.

It’s been a couple of weeks since they hatched.  Let me find out how Charles, Henry, and Wilber are doing.

“Howard, we need help!  Wilber fell out of the nest a short time ago and Helen and I are at a loss to get him back in the nest,  Can you help?”

Well, let’s see.  I can’t climb the tree so I can’t help you there.  I can only think of two ways to do it.  If we can keep Felix from following his natural instincts to eat Wilber maybe he would do it.  Otherwise the man has a ladder and he could do it if only we can communicate the nature of the problem to him.  What do you think?

“Since time is of the essence it would take too long to communicate with the man, based on your experience getting him to call you ‘Howard’.  S as risky as it may be, I think we need to go to Felix.”

OK, but let me be the one to go to Felix.  I have a bit more influence over him than you do.

Felix, Wilber fell out of the nest and we would like you to put him back.

“If you insist, I will do it.”

You do realize that I would take a very dim view if he does not make it back into the nest safely?

“Alright, but I am more afraid of Helen than I am of you.  She has a mean beak and I don’t want her ever to get angry with me again.”

I’ll show you where Wilber is.  I want you to talk to him first to calm him down.  It is a bird’s instinct to be afraid of cats as it is in a cat’s instinct to eat birds.

Hi, Wilber.  I’m Howard and this is Felix.  He is going to help you get back in the nest.

“Hello, Wilber.  Do you want to get back in the nest?”

“Absolutely!  I am cold and hungry and want to get back home as soon as possible,”

“You are a big bird and it will be difficult for me to keep my mouth open wide enough to keep from squeezing you.  So if you feel I’m squeezing too hard just squeak and I’ll try to ease up.  Here goes.”

“I must be getting old.  Climbing this tree is not nearly as easy as it was a couple of years ago.”

“Hi, Charles and Henry.  I’m Felix.  Here is your brother, Wilber.  Please don’t let him fall out again,”

“Well Howard, a successful rescue.”

Come on Felix, let’s go tell Maggie what happened.

Maggie, our friend, Felix, is a hero.  Baby Wilber fell out of the nest and Felix put him back

“Being a bird myself, Felix, I know what a challenge it must have been for you.  You truly are a hero.”

“I’ve always wanted to meet Ben and Helen, but the man will never let me go outside.”

Hmm.  I wonder,  Maybe….

Robert Niel Beatie – August 14, 2013

If you don't recall 'Howard' I suggest that you reread that post before reading this latest one.
Ben and Helen
What a beautiful spring day!  Almost all of the snow is gone and the sun is shining brightly.  Let’s go check out in the yard.

Hey!  Who are you?  I’m Howard.

“I’m Ben and this is my wife, Helen.  We come here every year to build a nest and raise a family.”

I assume, then, that you are acquainted with Felix?

“Yes, we worked out our differences with him some time ago.”

Where will you build your nest?

“Probably right here, on this spot, in this tree.  We’ve built here a couple of years, but Helen will want to try two or three different places.  She always does.”

Well, good luck to you, Ben.

“Why don’t we build the nest right here, Helen?  We’ve built here a couple of years now and you always seem to like it.”

“No, Ben, I really want to build a little higher for a better view.  I think right here will be perfect.”

“OK, let’s do it.  Here’s a good stout twig to start the foundation.”

“I’m sorry, Ben.  The breeze is moving this site way too much.  We’ll have to build somewhere else.”

“Why don’t we build the nest right here, Helen?  We’ve built here a couple of years now and you always seem to like it.”

“No, Ben, let’s move in closer to the house where the breeze is not as strong.”

“OK, we can give it a try’

“Ben, Ben, Ben.  It’s way too dark in this corner.  I have an idea.  Why don’t we build where we did the past couple of years?  I always liked it there.”

“What a good idea!.  Let’s do it.”

Robert Niel Beatie - August 13, 2013