A Case for Balance (I’ve lost mine somewhere, have you seen it?)

30jessie-2Do you see That Look?  It’s the Look says, “Hey… come on…seriously… you really need to clean up your act…time to get real…what are you doing?…do you want to talk about it?…what can I do to help?…don’t make me beg here…I’m only looking out after your best interests…this hurts me more than it hurts you…” (If you’ve ever talked to a Border Collie you’ll know how very intense they are with their incessant, directive chatter.)

I got That Look this morning.

Border Collies are known for giving you “the eye,” a glaring look of intimidation and control, it’s a trait passed down from their wolf ancestors.

JessieDog is known for giving people “the Puss n’ Boots from the movie Shrek eye.” Her ears flatten to the sides of her head while her eyes seem the grow larger and loom piteously, pleading, begging you to change, calling to your hardened heart until your heart nearly breaks under the strain of That Look.

“Border Collies are very bright, quick, and more than a little wierd.” Donald McCraig, author

Jessie uses That Look on the job. She doesn’t have any ducks or geese or sheep to herd. But like every other self-respecting (obsessive compulsive) Border Collie, Jessie must have work to do.  And if you don’t assign her a position, she’ll make one up. And so, Jessie has appointed herself as this family’s Emotional Herd Dog.

If you are sad, Jessie is there for you. If you are laughing, Jessie will laugh with you. If you start a fight, she’ll scold you. And if you are in the wrong, she lets you know.

And this morning she let me know. I was wrong. Yup, the old gal had me dead to rights.

“Enough is enough,” she said. “Time to get back to the regular business of living. Time to shake off the malaise of the snow and the passing of another Christmas. Time to put away ridiculous expectations of universal peace and familial perfection. Time to remember what is Really Important and what is Actually Possible. Time to bring some balance back into your life. Seriously. And it’s time to throw Buddy the ball.”

“A dog is not ‘almost human,’ and I know of no greater insult to the canine race than to describe it as such.” – John Holmes


Actually, all she really said was that last part – time to throw Buddy the ball – but the rest of it was implied.

You see, this is how Jessie and I got into this conversation to begin with —  I was sitting at the computer, reading through my oh-so-important emails, when Buddy the WonderDog interrupted me. He brought me his ball. I dismissively waved my hand at him. I told him to go away. I was busy.

The next thing I heard (and felt) the unmistakable WHUMP of Jessie’s large-ish backside hitting the floor (and my foot) as she not-so-subtly leaned into me and looked up, saying, “HEY! You got something more important to do?”

“Ouch, Jessie. Nope, I sure don’t. Let me have that ball, Buddy…”

I think I’ve found my balance. Now if I could just find the case…

Speaking of Balance and what’s Really Important, this blog post at ZenHabits is well worth the click: The Six Greatest Gifts You Can Give Your Loved Ones.


~ by Kimberly Mason on December 30, 2008.

One Response to “A Case for Balance (I’ve lost mine somewhere, have you seen it?)”

  1. It’s all about those eyes, ya know? Seems you have a good understanding of a Border Collies personality. Gotta love them, I love mine!

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