Now, me, I'm the easy-going type. The instructor calls me the class clown. I know that I'm perceived as being goofy, and I'm probably the fodder for after class gossip and when my colleagues meet on the running trails in between classes. But, I figure life is too short to be serious all the time. After all, this class is supposed to be about participating and having fun. There are no trophies or awards being handed out. So, I underachieve--that's one of my goals in life. More of you should try it.
Perhaps I listen and follow the commands; perhaps I choose not to. Someone has to cherish independence among this group that meekly follows Sage's directions like a bunch of sheep. And there is nothing wrong with my reddish locks shot through with golden highlights either.
My appearance certainly attracted the attention of that rogue Charlie in the last exercise class. About half way through the first class, the instructor noted that there might be a budding love affair happening. Of course, I was coy about it although I must admit that I watched him out of the corners of my compassionate brown eyes. Charlie sure was a mess, moaning and groaning, and totally off-task most of the time. I wonder what that Sage would have done to try to get Charlie on track if she would have been in the previous class. Alas, Charlie was forced to attend a different class this time in the hopes that we could both concentrate better.
But, I do like this outdoor format, especially these late evening summer classes. It's so much better to breathe fresh air than the stuffy, dusty arena setting. Of course, I miss the horse-produced goodies in the arena. The treats I get at this class are so ordinary and predictable.
It is such an effort to get here on time though. After a busy day of working, walking to retrieve the paper, helping to dig in the flowerbeds, and just generally hanging out with Doug when he's outside or in his garage, I try to find excuses not to come to exercise class. First, I try the "I'm too tired" routine by stretching out for a quick nap to show my exhaustion after a hard day. When that doesn't work, I attempt the compensation route--I'll do my own exercising at home--so I roll around on the grass, my tongue hanging out the side of my mouth, figuring the cuter I am, the less likely I'll have to go to exercise class. As a final effort, I make myself as heavy as possible because I know Lorraine has trouble lifting all sixty-five pounds of me.
But, it does no good because I have to go anyway. That Lorraine is a class-taker and has decided that she has paid for the class, so we are attending even if she has to lift, drag, and bribe me. Maybe Sage will find some sheep to boss and herd tonight and leave the rest of us alone. Or maybe Lorraine will finally buy some roll-ups like the others get and stop feeding me my food as treats just because I decide--at least this time--that I will jump hurdles, run through the tunnels, climb the A-frame, and do all the other inane things that humans think their unconditional-loving companions want to do in exercise class.
Agility they call it--well, I have some ideas about that agility bit too. But, right now, I have to deal with Sage because here she comes looking for a job. Overachieving border collies are always on a mission. They should take lessons from those of us who are golden retrievers and know the importance of lying in the sun.
Note from Lorraine: Although Hayley and I tried a couple sessions of agility and she was good at it when she cooperated, the instructor told me that I was dealing with a 'goofy golden' personality. I think the instructor was talking about the dog rather than me! And, yes, Sage and Charlie were real dogs in the classes.