Sumo's 4. Birthday, today October 4. 2009

In honor of Sumo's birthday I ditched my shoulds and headed up north not forgetting to pack a freshly boiled chicken breast. What we happened to come upon was this gorgeous fishing lake adjacent to the Benedictine Monastery in Pecos.

What a lovely place even after the peak of fall colors. I could not have pleased my pups, that really are no longer pups, but mature dogs, any more. We meandered around the whole lake not once, but trice, both dogs off lead and in canine heaven. Soon I learned that my Isabella-girl knows how to swim. She showed no hesitation in jumping in to the lake in pursuit of a pair of ducks. For a moment I worried I had to follow her in to the cold wet to rescue her back to shore, but with a quizzical look on her face and determined, or was it desperate paddling, she made it back to solid grounds, only to douse us with her wetness. I managed to call Sumo off from a rare following suit. he is a lot more in to leading and charging ahead then following, usually. I am really not sure about his swimming abilities. In fact we have never been near a lake as accessible and clean looking where off lead dogs were welcome and nobody even charged a fee.

Sumo was in canine heaven and for once lost his focus on me and stayed wholly involved with his own nose, sights and sounds and sensory input. That guy sure gets the hunting and exploring instincts and is hard to hold back. What a blessing for us to have found this lovely spot.

After one round I was to head back to the van to find them treats but Sumo refused to get anywhere in sight of that darn vehicle as to him it must mean the end of all fun! Little did he know or care that chicken breast was waiting there for him. 3 rounds and each time same story. My guy does know how to make his feelings and wishes clear, but then so do I!

My two must be holding a conference here as to my wishes to return to our 'mobile home'. Isabella already tasted the treats and must be assuring Sumo, but he would not be convinced and would keep his distance and avoidance tactic.

As it so happened, the other day the news reported of President Jacque Chirac's little dog, oddly enough also called Sumo and also a Poodle/Maltese, in pure white though without the Yorkie parts in mine, but looking like I imagined my dog to look, back then. Well this Sumo had bitten the former French President 3 times in what they called a depression over adjusting to a smaller environment then the presidential palace! The dog had to go, to some farm. Easier to get rid of a problem then dealing with the underlying cause for bad behavior! I doubt that dog got enough exercise and discipline.

My Sumo barks too often when meeting other dogs on lead in town. I am really not sure why, at times it seems simple excitement, other times it seems more aggressive and incites a stand off. He is fine at our dog park, but will tell any dog off, no matter the size, when he had enough of being sniffed. Alas, he seems very attractive to many sniffers. I judge my Sumo to be an essential alpha male and therefor more interested following his nose and instincts then in others, dogs or humans.


Polanski's arrest in Zurich got me stirred up and I am not even a fan of his movies. I swear the boards are the modern lion dens or witch hunts and sinister hangings of times I had believed long gone. Screams of bloody murder with the throwing of the rapist, if not in the fires of hell, at least in to prison to rot for the remainder of his life. Rape and child are the buzz words, although like any word the meaning can take on all kinds of colors.

According to the victim her experience does not qualify as rape as it lacked the violence she would associate with such. While rape is rape as concerns the lack of consent and the proceeding even while being told no, there are shades here. The child had sex before and supposedly was only weeks away from the age of 14 and the ability to offer consent legally.

A child being drugged in order to be taken advantage of, sounds so sinister, yet Qualudes were so common and so easily accessible, even to school kids that wanted them. I know, I grew up in Switzerland, it was a cinch to ask my friend's boyfriend to get me some illegal pharmaceuticals (once LSD for my mom's friend. Bless my mom's heart, I believe she never learned of this.) Offering Quaalude and Champagn seem to be equated with today's dating drug abuse scandals, while in the sixties and seventies were the social norm in certain circles.

Offering alcohol to a 13 year old in Europe is common and would never warrant the American outrage. I must say I hate the infantilization of American kids that are old enough to be sent to war, but not old enough to have a celebratory sip of alcohol. I hate that a 19 year old having an affair with a few year younger kid can be prosecuted for child abuse and even incarcerated if sex is involved. Yet I remember plenty of school mates actively in pursuit of sex at a tender age of barely noticeable sexual characteristics. I remember how at 12 years of age some men judged me to be 20 years of age, and that without any provocation, certainly not of a sexual nature on my part.

No, I do not favor middle aged men having sex with very young girls and no, rape is inexcusable. Neither do I favor the laissez fair or letting go of crimes because of times that did pass. Obviously Polanski is a fighter. He survived the Holocaust in Krakau, got over a Dad that told him to fuck off and had to deal with the brutal slaying of his wife and had to endure the suspicions of the authorities and fellow Americans. Somehow looking at the larger picture, his escape when the judge's ambition became obvious seems befitting, if ill chosen. What possibly in his past could have made him place his trust in the American legal and political system?

Apprehended now, I hope he will have a chance to finish this sordid and long overdue business, pay his debt to society without going to prison, I hope. Compensating the American tax payer with a fine that would cover the expense of keeping his case open for 30 years seems just. And I would add a punishment of having to produce films of an educational nature that have sexual abuse and boundaries at the core, suitable to be shown to kids, in various age appropriate versions. This seems to me a good and fitting punishment without wasting good talent and filling already overflowing prisons with another individual that really poses no longer a threat to society (considering no new allegations of child abuse come to the fore.)

Back to my beginning what irks me are the cries for revenge clothed in terms of Justice. Polanski admitted to guilt only as regards to unlawful sexual intercourse, not rape! The fact that he is white, rich and well connected seems to get some folks ire, as rage mounts at the thought of another aborted attempt at legal justice.

His victim forgave Polanski in 1997 and considered his 30 years in exile as sufficient punishment. No, victims are not to dictate legal procedures, but should their word not count for something? Or do we once again infantalize the victims by acting 'for their own good' while ignoring their testimony?

No, money, power and status ought to not determine the justice system. What I would like to see is a justice not based on needs for revenge, not meted out by the book, but considered with true wisdom that looks at the crime in a differentiated fashion rather then black and white and can address the real needs of society, victim and perpetrator.

Meanwhile let's keep on enjoying Swiss Chocolates!