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Monday, February 14, 2005 

Chester Snagley

Ok Ok here is another post
I had a dog when I was a kid named Chester. It was named after the Gun Smoke character. A truly disgusting dog, but a great kids dog.
He was a mutt of somewhat questionable origin. Part Shepard part bum part idiot. He was an Olympic car chaser and a Casanova. His culinary aptitude was also highly unusual for a dog anyway. He was the sort of dog you tried to “put up” before company came.
He was part Shepard you could at least tell that, but you could tell he was not all there. It could have been the abundance of genetic abnormalities that could only blend together to cause a dog such as this to be created. But then again, he could have been only partially there mentally. He had been in multiple fights with other dogs, cars, cats, and shot guns I don’t remember him ever comeing out ahead in any of them. I remember a stray cat wandered in one day. A yellow tom cat, the all pro defensive tackle of tom cats Chester started using his logic “big mistake number one” Hey this is a cat in my yard. Dogs hate cats, I am a dog therefore I hate this cats. Dogs also chase cats, this is a cat I am a dog therefore I will chase this cat. Granted it took 7 seconds to read this but Chester sat on the ground with his back legs splayed our in front of him for about 5 minutes contemplating the situation. The cat figured he was welcome since the dog just sat there. He did not know that he was dealing with limited intelligence. Well Chester finally put two and two together came up with 5 and attacked. The tom cat road him around the yard for a while chewing on his ears, sort of a Mike Tyson, Evander Holifield thing, leaving a notch in each ear. This turned him in to a coward when it came to cats.
The one incident that I remember that personified his character is a visit from a preacher when I was a child. In the country where I was raised the preacher could be a nutcase, a loon, a raving nincompoop but be deeply respected in the community because of his position, such was the case here. No one wanted the pastor of the local church to tell the community that you had any problems from dandruff to dirty dishes. A dog such as Chester was a major social liability. When he arrived with his wife Chester, who was just in from eating road kill, slipped up and, shall we say deflated, and he was greatly inflated. The noxious gasses enveloped us all. It was truly horrific, we all stood there with tears streaming down our faces trying to catch our breath and greet one another at the same time. Finally we retreated inside the house Mom shot me a look as if to say,” Kill that dog”. I went off fully intent on fulfilling my task but Chester would not be caught.
Once in the house we recovered I assumed the rest of the visit would be less eventful. That is the day I found I would have no future as a prognosticator. We sat at the table, which has a window overlooking the front yard. Chester soon arrived dragging his butt across the yard he had an ear-to-ear grin, and a look of sublime relief. He made three trips across the front yard before my mom stopped me from laughing long enough to chase him away.
Next he showed up the remains of some poor creature that had met his fate sometime the previous winter. He stood out front licking his chops preparing to consume this feast. I began to loose patience for Chester, I assumed, as I gaggingly removed the entrails, that I would never get lunch. Not that I had an appetite anymore. I wont go into the finale that Chester had in store for us during desert. But suffice it to say involved a female collie and a garden hose.
I don’t know if Chester had it in for organized religion or not, or if he was just being particularly disgusting that day, but we shortly moved to another church. We came to terms with the neighbors thinking we were uncouth, frankly I had about all the couth I could stand anyway.
Chester went on to live for several more years. I remember when he died he walked to the edge of our porch and looked up at me as if to say. “A dog like me should live for a thousand years’ then he died. I was sad but I was the only one. Such is life.