I have this family member I rarely talk about on my blog because he’s not very bright and has serious behavioral issues. I’m not going to sugarcoat things: Unless he’s sleeping, he is, quite frankly, a complete asshole. His name is Alfonso Emilio (Alfie for short). He was adopted at seven weeks and was so incredibly cute that we overlooked his flaws. As he got older, several things became apparent about Alfie: He has serious discipline problems, an impure heart (according to my sister’s boyfriend) and a complete disregard for proper bathroom habits. Personally, I think the problem is that Alfie’s head is too small for the rest of his body — there just isn’t enough brain in that tiny head of his. Poor little Alfie has the head of a chihuahua and the body of a beagle, so maybe it’s not his fault he is the way he is. I admit I overindulged Alfie when he was a puppy. He was so cute with those weird fluffy ears and soulful eyes…it was hard not to love him. But now Alfie’s almost two years old and things…they just aren’t getting better.
Ever since he tasted human food at the young age of six months, Alfie will stop at nothing in his pursuit of sweets. He loves popsicles, croissants and ice cream. On Easter Sunday 2012, he furtively approached the dining room table stole three croissants and acted like nothing had happened. Later that year, he downed an entire brie in one sitting. This was a Costco brie, so we’re not talking small. He snuck into the dining room while we were in the family room and by the time we returned, there was nothing left of the brie. But in the end, the joke was on Alfie: He spent the next two days in a painful-looking food coma farting up a storm, unable to move from his luxury Costco dog bed. You would think that incident would have taught him a lesson, but it didn’t. Just two days ago, my mom made me a delicious-looking juicy steak and put it on the table for me. I turned around for just a minute — a minute, I tell you — and the steak was gone. Alfie had stolen it and then ran to hide under the dining room table. I swear he had a maniacal, evil look on his face as he ate that steak.
In addition to food, Alfie enjoys stealing shoes and other material goods, something that generally ends in a high-speed chase where I’m running after him begging him to return the stolen merchandise. I try to reason with him and to use logic (“Alfie you are not being a good boy! Alfie, please be nice and bring me my shoe/sunglasses/computer cord; Alfie, you are being very rude and I am very disappointed in you!”). It never works. I usually have to barricade him in with a babygate before he gives himself up.
When he is not stealing food or shoes, Alfie enjoys destroying property. When he was just a few months old, he shredded his “puppy training” book in an act of defiance and failed to show any remorse. More recently, he took a stand against peace and destroyed a Gandhi book on peaceful protest. That should tell you how evil he is. So far, he’s destroyed two sets of curtains, eaten my sister’s expensive earrings, my mom’s reading glasses and my dad’s fancy hat. And he’s ruined two pairs of my eyeglasses. As if this weren’t enough, Alfie has a blatant disregard for other household members. Think it’s bad if your boyfriend/husband leaves the toilet seat up? That’s nothing. More frequently than I’d like to admit, Alfie will look at me, smile his jolly, tongue-on-the-side smile, then pop a squat in a most unabashed way as if he’s doing nothing wrong. Again, remorse is rarely shown. Not too long ago, Alfie ran downstairs with my shoe in his mouth, jumped on my bed, looked back at me with my sandal in his mouth and then pooped all over the comforter. And a few months before that, he jumped on my brother’s bed in the morning to wake him up and peed on his head. Although my brother did wake up, he was never able to fully trust Alfie again after that incident and their relationship has suffered.
It’s too late to return him now. With his curly, shaggy ears, black spots, jolly grin and bouncy step, it’s hard not to love him, despite his serious behavioral issues. Oh well. But I think I’m going to have to contact the Dog Whisperer to see if he can work his magic on Alfie.