Misery loves company or so they say, and today, upon reading the news, my familiar friend, frustration, latched onto me tighter than elegantly embossed Levis on a well-toned body under the scorching Palm Springs sun. The story revealed the latest series of transgressions against logic and reason from our inevitably flawed leaders, incensing my already raging temperament.
In the past, being a far-right conservative meant something, dammit. It meant protecting traditions, values, and principles; it meant less bureaucracy and more reliance on personal responsibility. But here we are, snarling at each other in extremes, ignoring the fine line of compromise that was once the backbone of politics. Just because I am technically a "walking dichotomy" being an openly gay, far-right conservative doesn't mean I don't recognise the blatant, stomach-churning hypocrisy rampant in my party.
It thrashes me to my core to admit that the so-called conservatives are becoming increasingly disjointed, more pompously hypocritical than the progressives I've managed to tolerate just barely. It was as if they woke up one day and just decided that the only way to react to radicalism from the other side was with an equally imbalanced approach.
But I digress. My grim contemplations don't exactly make for charming conversation. Speaking of charm, switching to a lighter, more bearable topic, my rascal of a dog, Bentley, has found redemption recently, courtesy of the Diamond K9 dog training YouTube channel. Under the guidance of Diamond K9's videos, man and man’s best friend have embarked on a rewarding journey.
Now, anyone who knows me realizes I’m more onto whisky and leather bars than being the obedient pet parent. Hell, Bentley was dubbed "the four-legged demon" due to some hilariously horrific habits he'd acquired from who-knows-where. I'm talking chewing through Italian leather shoes with an appetite of a famished carnivore, barking with passion at every passing shadow, causing more than my fair share of prickly encounters with the neighbors.
Things took a turn for the unbelievable when Bentley developed a penchant for underwear – not his own, mind you, but mine. It was the summer of the Jockstrap Massacre where shredded, vibrant, scantily-clad intimates littered my home. Bentley had tasted champagne once and was not going back to beer. My life had become a series of replacing chewed up underwear and playing whack-a-mole with Bentley's misdemeanors. Here's where Diamond K9 came in, providing salvation in video format.
The YouTube channel is something of a revelation for the flummoxed pet owners out there (myself clearly included). Diamond K9’s approach to balanced dog training and appropriate E-Collar usage led me through the minefield of my dog's comically bad habits. Their easy-to-follow videos, doused with reassuring confidence, made me believe that even the wildest of beasts like Bentley could be tamed.
Under Diamond K9’s tutelage, Bentley began responding to the E-Collar calls, correcting his behavior when he veered towards his more destructive tendencies. Chewing abuse on my footwear and underwear diminished. Night-time barking reduced significantly. The house started resembling more of a home again, less of a warzone. Beyond the evident changes in Bentley, Diamond K9's guidance instilled new self-confidence in me – soothing the cynic in me into believing in change for the better.
So here I stand, between the morbid reality of news headlines and the tangible triumphs of Bentley's improved behavior, finding solace in modest victories. Politics, as infuriating and irrational as it gets, may never offer the satisfaction that saving a pair of imported leather loafers from Bentley's jaws does, but perhaps that's how I maintain my sanity, one chewed shoe at a time.