Jesus Smells Like a Wet Dog?: Curious Things Overheard at My Grandma’s House

Creepy LASER VISION basset hounds!

One of the highlights of my recent trip to Calgary– a shining beacon of happiness in the midst of sorrow, if you will– came courtesy of the interchange between one of my cousins and my mom. It was a few days before my Grandpa’s funeral, and a small army of family members had descended upon the Legendary Family Home like locusts (to save on hotel costs, of course). The bedrooms were all full, the couches had all been claimed, and one of my poor cousins got stuck on a foam mattress on the basement floor when she first arrived.

Not my grandma's dog, but pretty darn cute nonetheless. Ladies and gentlemen: meet Howard!

To make matters worse for my poor cousin, even though the eldest aunt had washed every piece of bed-able linen in the house, all of the bedding had been distributed to other family members already, leaving my cousin with only (gasp!) one of the dog’s blankets to use overnight. She didn’t know it at the time she snatched the furry quilt up, but my grandma’s prized basset hound, Metro, had snuggled in that very same blanket– probably for solid weeksΒ before my cousin used it. (In this case, ignorance was bliss. Who would have wanted to knowingly curl up in the dog’s blanket for the night?) πŸ™‚

Metro and Grandma

Anyway. My cousin understandably had a terrible sleep that night, ensconced as she was in a stinky dog quilt. My mom didn’t fare much better on the couch in the living room, as my grandma’s two dogs (Metro and Hunter, akaΒ The Bestest Boy), were free to cuddle with her all night if they so desired… which they did. Hundreds of pounds of dog in her makeshift bed! In the morning, bleary-eyed from lack of sleep, my cousin and my mother commiserated.

Mom: I didn’t sleep well at all last night. The Bestest Boy was practically wrapped around my face the whole time.

Metro is playing the part of The Bestest Boy in this pic.

Cousin: I had a terrible sleep, too. I’m pretty sure I was sleeping with one of the dog quilts, because I kept waking up and smelling Cheezies all night.

Mom: [Perplexed.] [Totally misunderstanding my cousin, thinking she said she was smelling Jesus all night. Don’t forget that we come from a super-religious family, so somebody claiming to smell Jesus wouldn’t be entirely unheard of in the family home.] [Giving my cousin a polite look.]Β Β  ???

Cousin: [Seeing look of utter confusion on my mom’s face.] [Attempting to elaborate.] You know… sort of like a wet dog smell? I kept waking up and smelling something gross.

Mom: [Nose wrinkling.] [Not sure if her niece is being serious or completely sacrilegious.] Jesus… smells like a wet dog blanket?!

Cousin: [Busting a gut laughing.] Not Jesus— CHEEZIES!!

[Gales of laughter erupt]

********************************************

PS: Thank you to those of you who wrote to tell me that the Comments section is being a real jerk. The WordPress forums don’t have much to suggest except “Make sure you are logged in to comment”, so hopefully things will clear up soon!

54 responses

    • Hmm, I like to think that *I* smell like chocolate cake. Does that make me a heathen? πŸ™‚

      Thanks for the well-wishes, Tori. We’re managing AOK here. How are the wedding plans holding up?

    • I think that blanket was the canine equivalent of a sweaty gym towel. So sorry that my cousin had to sleep underneath it, but fortunately we now have a classic family story to share with future generations (and the internet!) πŸ™‚

  1. Dana, I have a feeling you could write volumes on the subject of discussions about religion within your family. I’d like to hear how you came to be perceived or known as the ‘heathen’. The dynamics would seem to have sit-com written all over them. Little Mosque On The Prairie sort of stuff.

    • Hey Dean– nice to see that you were able to find away to comment again. Yes, I could write volumes on the subject of religion in my family, but I probably won’t. My family doesn’t know me as the heathen, either– it’s just how I feel when I’m in the midst of my very pious family members. πŸ™‚

  2. Very personal stuff I know. Your observations of your grandfather suggest he held a strong patriarchal position in the family. The parallels with religion generally would seem inevitable, especially considering it played a large role in his life. His death, while a loss, would bring to the forefront what should be a healthy facing of mortality, of others and ourselves that we all must do at some time. It touched a nerve of course with everyone reading your experience.

    Might seem like a humourless or fun-less subject, but not necessarily so.
    Death is a natural part of life and can be one of our greatest motivators to make the most of it.

    • I think my grandpa’s death has caused everyone in the family to reassess their beliefs and spirituality, for sure. Personally, I still consider myself to be a very “spiritual” person but have reaffirmed that my beliefs are most nurtured outside of actual church walls. The biggest change for me during this time has been accepting (truly, not just in a lip-service way) that most of the other people in my extended family are most comforted by structured religion. It’s okay for me to have my beliefs and my family members to have theirs. (After all, when it comes down to it, we all believe in the same things, just express and nourish those beliefs in different ways.)

  3. What a wonderful story! I’m so sorry for your loss. I also recently had a several-week-long “family reunion” due to my younger sister’s untimely death ten days before my mother died of pancreatic cancer. Amazingly, there were moments of sheer joy and honest hilarity in the midst of all the sadness.There was a line in “Steel Magnolias” that said something like, “laughter through tears is the best kind”. I agree! I’m glad your family can see it, too!

    • Oh– I am so sorry to hear about your losses! What a tragic time for you and your family– my thoughts are with you.

      I think that laughter amidst sadness really helps to strengthen the bonds between people. I know that this story, in particular, will be cherished by the whole family for MANY years to come. πŸ™‚

  4. Jesus… smells like a wet dog blanket?!

    This sounds like a crazy Monaghan story. My parents have 33 or so grandchildren (my brothers and sisters, and my kids) and when half of us get together, the stories are just like that. I love it.

    Good times amonst tough times, for sure!

    • I thought we were a large family with 15-ish grandkids and 7 great-grandbabies… but apparently we have NOTHING on the Irish! πŸ™‚ Glad you enjoyed the story, MJ.

  5. Aw, loved this story. The dogs are so cute! Love their floppy ears.

    It’s funny, after my dad died, even during the darkest days immediately afterward, my brothers and I managed to find a little humor in the day to day things. We even laughed at an inside joke right after his funeral. My dad had my sense of humor, so I know he was there with us laughing, too. Without laughter, those hard times would be almost unbearable!

    • So true, Darla. My cousins and I bonded a lot over shared “terrifying and/or embarrassing Grandpa” memories while we were gathered for his funeral. The inside jokes and funny moments helped make an otherwise sad occasion a little more tolerable.

  6. Dana, what a wonderful story. I’m so glad you had the chance to laugh together. We laughed, a lot, when we all gathered for our Dad’s service and the memories of this have stayed with all of us.

    • Thanks, Colleen. It feels like we had way more happy moments than sad ones while we were in Calgary, which I guess is a great thing. My grandpa would have loved to see everyone laughing together. πŸ™‚

  7. Wonderful blog – woke me up smiling on a Tuesday morning. These little family stories are what make family so SPECIAL, and help us get through the rigors of ‘life’ (and death). Thank you for sharing!

  8. I remember the days following my grandfather’s passing – he and my grandmother had nine children, at least twenty-three grandchildren and heaven-only-knows how many great-grandchildren… Several of the “womenfolk”, including my two sisters and I, were sitting around sharing stories. I was in college, my sisters probably about 13-15-ish, and we were mostly just laughing at our aunts’ tales; my grandmother was quietly listening. There was a brief break in the conversation which my youngest sister filled with a very loud belch. She then proceeded to look appropriately mortified when everyone except our grandmother turned to gape. Grandma just shook her head and quipped, “I’d only give that 7 out of 10.” Gales of laughter followed – Best. Medicine. Ever!

    Thank you for “Jesus smells like a wet dog” – Classic!

  9. Ack! Love Basset Hounds. So sorry about your Grandpa. Hope this isn’t totally inappropriate but he was kind of hot in his day!

    • Not at all inappropriate, Kathy! My whole family has been gawking over grandpa’s good looks for the past few weeks, and it’s way more inappropriate to think a blood relation is hot than it is to admire the good looks of somebody totally random. πŸ˜‰

  10. Hillarious as always Dana lol … cheezies. I am often impressed by the love some people have for their pets (Dogs especially) being a cat owner, I am not used to animals having their own posessions beyond toys πŸ™‚ Your poor cousin and Mom

    • Nice to see you around the internetz again, Stephanie! My grandma’s dogs are SPOILED! They’re not really interested in toys or balls, but they do love their special blankets. πŸ˜‰

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