It is official. Linus is trying to kill us. It starts off really early in the morning when Big Friendly gets up. I hear it happening in the passage. Linus tries to trip him, every single day of our lives. After he has tried to trip Big Friendly he lies plonk, in the middle of whatever space he is in, and then he will not budge. At all. And he does it like a spatchcock style, with his back legs stretched out behind him for maximum potential tripping damage.
With me, his plan is a little different. He waits until I am on my haunches to say hello, before trying to push me over, with his head, followed by his body. If I need to go to the bathroom in the morning one of two things must happen. Either, I can’t get out of bed because Linus is lying on my legs, hard, in a comatose sleep from which he will not budge (trying to kill Big Friendly is obviously hard work), or he will walk behind me all the way to the batheroom with his cold, wet nose aiming for my bum. It is pretty disconcerting. All of this is before leaving the house.
At the park we are in the most danger. Linus designs rough-and-tumble games with Frieda to guarantee their proximity to me and Big Friendly and then he aims for our legs. If he is in a jolly mood he will aim directly for us, from the front. If he is a bit more woes and energetic he will hit us from behind, with such force our knees and legs buckle, and I have hit the deck more than once. This is a great result, because then he can sniff and lick my face. Sometimes he has eaten cat poo with that tongue. Just saying.
Going to the beach with Linus is very interesting. Here I think his aim is to maim and torture us rather than outright kill us. I think he knows we need to drive him home. And he loves coming home. For food. On the beach Linus looks like the perfect example of joy and freedom. He greets all other dogs happily, frolics in the waves, bounds in the sand, looks for chicken bones, cools his tummy by lying in the shallows. Then he charges for our legs. Prize number one for him is to scrape the tops of our bare feet with his giant claws. Second prize is to take us down from behind, like at the park, only this time in sand or water. And his new thing is to use our legs as towels, when he is soaked and sandy. He comes bouncing up to either one of us, and drags his entire body across the back and front of our legs, covered or bare. Human towels.
When we drive we have to beg Linus to “go to the back” from his determined position on the driver’s seat.
Yesterday Linus took himself for a splash about in a slick and muddy stream, and then he couldn’t get out (or so we thought). Big Friendly had to go and drag him out by his slowly slipping front paws. I saw the whole thing. Linus was trying to kill Big Friendly by getting him to fall face first into the black, muddy water.