Sunday, April 4, 2010


I went to see puppies.

A wild dust was stirred into their outdoor pen by some other Weimaraner, who I never saw rush by, for her speed. A few weeks later this crazy animal would become mine.

She was no longer needed for breeding. The call came. Did I want her? No, I wanted a puppy.

Seeing my elderly parents’ eyes crest over with sorrow for this throwaway show dog, brought her home with us to ten ‘depth of heart’ years, until cancer became her life and she blew away.

I named her Professor Zimbabweeps for a boxful of wild and crazy reasons. Like the dust she created on the day I first met her presence, there was much twirling about her in character and deed. All that she was, named her and named her and named her.

She was the great heiress of Colsidex Standing Ovation and Nani Mastercard this and Mastercharge that. She was the dog on TV for Fox News, guiding families through animal cancer, and later, the Founder of the National Cancer Society for Animals. She was also the enthusiast, who often tore open cat food cans, smearing the deliciousness into my longhaired wool rug! Mostly she was a nickname –- Those who knew how she came to me in a flurry of dust, and what she had become to thousands of cancer stricken animals, looked at her face and slate stone color, and said, ‘God’s Dust!’

When our illustrious memories of swimming side by side in Lake Sabbatia, to standing on stage for cameras at Boston’s Prudential Center, came to a close under cancer’s grip, I had her cremated. Her ashes would be spread under two 185 foot ancient pines on the edge of a great hill to the field. We had sat there together, over and over through the years, both musers under the sky.

Oddly her ashes never arrived. I called and called the crematorium. Mistakenly she had been ‘left on ice’ for 2 weeks! I wondered why I had been ‘fortune’s fool’ to such an indignity. On Easter weekend I found out.

A Power greater than myself was about to tap me on the shoulder that the throwaway dog would be safe in His hands, and traveling first class to meet him.

The crematorium called. Professor would be returned to dust from whence she came, on that evening. It was Good Friday. I remembered the thousands of suffering animals. On Saturday friends came from all over to leave peace at my door while the day hung its head in memory of the ‘crazy to playzie,’ the icon, the love…...

On Easter Sunday, a lady that the National Cancer Society for Animals had counseled through the loss of her Cocker Spaniel asked if she could could be the transport of Professor’s ashes home. Into my hand Linda handed me Professor Zimbabweeps. To the field I went. The sun was out. The wind was turning. As I opened the gold canister and tipped it to one side, her presence.... from the first moment I met her to the last second I watched her.... her presence in dust blew by me with the wildest of speed. God’s Dust.

(Excerpt from Professor in the Sky with Diamonds, Andrea Spencer's book in progress, detailing the life of one dog turned icon to thousands, the day cancer became her life.)


1 comment:

What The Bleep said...

This is going to be a great book. I'll be wanting one.