Culture vulture

The dog ate my column
This week’s installment of the column was originally intended to chronicle a night on the town. Culture Vulture would don his owl suit and infiltrate the nocturnal scene. Old friends would be hailed and well met. Familiar watering holes would be sipped from and slipped out of with only a moderate tip and an empty glass to mark the trail of our passing. A late-night hotdog would be consumed with relish (and probably onions). And most essential of all, live, loud rock ‘n’ roll music would be listened to and appreciated in the company of pals, strangers and potential friends.

But, as has been previously noted, the best laid plans of mice and men are prone to going vastly awry. For instance, on Saturday morning Culture Vulture informed the lovely I. Daphne St. Brie that it was our intention to head downtown that evening to catch the big night of metal bands playing at Lost on Main. We’ve heard nothing but good things about the new club and we wanted to “make the scene,” as we used to say back in the paisley-spattered days of our checkered youth. And there is nothing like a night spent having one’s ears blown back by a brigade of shouting miscreants with overdriven amplifiers, tortured guitars and rib-rattling drums to send one floating joyfully to sleep with the ringing in one’s ears providing a soundtrack to apocalyptic dreams.

But alas, it was not to be. And I lay the responsibility firmly at the feet of the Culture Vulture World Headquarters guard dog, Stella. A remarkable beast in every way is young Stella. Wiry and strong, affectionate and loyal, utterly fierce, and irrepressibly determined. Also, a profoundly talented and relentless escape artist. The fences of CVWHQ have, in the years since Stella’s arrival, been fortified, heightened, reinforced and triple locked to restrain this determined hound. She has slipped through cracks that would stop a cat half her size. She has climbed over barricades that would stymie a mountain goat. And in her latest escapade she passed through an intact, 7-foot board fence without a trace. Not only did she achieve this Houdini-like feat, she also, as a sort of slap in the face cum coup de grace took her companion Sam—a sweet-natured black mutt more than twice her size—with her.

Unfortunately for everyone concerned, the best planned escapes of dogs and mutts also often go awry. The two dogs, having made their inexplicable escape, attempted to follow the route of their favorite walk down Cypress Street to One-Mile. Despite having made that trip innumerable times while restrained by the firm but loving guidance of Daphne and self, they ran afoul of the stop light on Ninth Street with the result that Stella is now enjoying a recuperative period complete with tragi-comical plastic cone-hood, a huge stapled-together gash on her right thigh and both back legs swathed in bandages to protect the broken ankle and shredded skin resulting from the impact of the car that both ended her expedition and bore her to the pet hospital that reassembled her after the impact. We sincerely thank the driver of that car for saving both dogs from what would have been a much more grisly fate if she hadn’t stopped and rescued them.

So that’s why I didn’t go to the show. Maybe next week when we’ve all caught up on our sleep.