February 12, 2007

"poy toodle"

I just tuned in to the Westminster Kennel Show. Toy dogs and terriers don't normally catch my attention, but the announcer's spoonerism* ("poy toodle") did. It even distracted me from staring at the reporter's sequined pant suit in electric blue. Krystle Carrington would look right at home at Westminster.

Talking about big hair: The Dandie Dinmont Terrier looked as if it wore a wig. But that seems to be alright - he won the competition. The New York Times has a backstory on the little guy:
Harry, or Ch. Hobergays Fineus Fogg, lounged alone in the pooch equivalent of the on-deck circle. Not a single Dandie would challenge him at Madison Square Garden. Every other breed has at least a few rivals. Forty-three Cavalier King Charles Spaniels squared off in Ring 3 a few hours before. But there was just a single Dandie who, by the scorecard published by the weekly periodical Dog News, was dandy in extremis. Harry, a 6-year-old New Zealander who is heading for retirement, had scored the most points in the country in 2006.

It seems that the judge had a rather, um, intimate relationship with the dog:

Betty-Anne Stenmark, a breeder who would judge Harry and seven other terrier breeds, stood a few feet from Harry and his handler. She imported his semen when he was just a puppy [... ].“ It’s well known that I’m one of his biggest fans,” she said.

Hmpf. So much for impartiality. More tonight: Sporting dogs, herding dogs, hounds -- and Best in Show.

*Spoonerisms are named after the Reverend W.A. Spooner (1844-1930). According to the OED, ther term has been "in colloquial use in Oxford from about 1885".Technically, spoonerisms are slips of the tongue that indicate that we plan speech ahead.

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