It always makes me nervous when my younger brother asks me if I can do him a favour. It usually never ends well for me, or for whoever else he asks. He has a way of delegating jobs he’d rather not do himself.
He gets away with murder because he’s a nice guy and a bit disarming. I’m generally immune to it since I’ve known him all his life but then I sigh, tell myself he’s my little bro and get drawn in to his bizarre plans, as I said, usually to my detriment.
He has bones that will break if you so much as give them a long, hard look. He’s registered disabled now and and not very good on his legs. Getting from A to B generally involves cadging lifts, getting a taxi or using the local disability transport. He lives with a little dog called King who’s an eclectic mix of breeds, most likely a chihuahua and a King Charles spaniel. He’s totally blind and fair to say he’s knocking on a bit. At the last reckoning he was about twelve years old, the dog I’m taking about now, not my brother.
Over Christmas my sister went to see him, my brother, not the dog, and he asked her for a favour – would she cut his toenails?
Ohhhhhh noooooo!!!! Eeeeeeewwwww!!!!!!!!
She, and I, went queasy at the thought of it. If you’d seen his toenails you’d know what I mean. Disgusting! Poor sis has been keeping out of his way ever since Christmas in case he asks her again. I did gently suggest to him that there are chiropodists for that kind of thing but he wasn’t for taking me on at all. I don’t know if he’d had them done yet, I daren’t ask. He stopped short of asking me to do it though. I think the look on my face gave him the answer before he’d even asked the question.
So, instead he requested that I cut his hair because he couldn’t get to i.e. couldn’t be bothered going to the barber’s. ” I don’t know how to cut hair” I wailed at him. “It’ll be right, just cut it straight across.”
Good Lord, he looked like Friar Tuck when I’d finished. A picture of sartorial elegance he is not. Did I mention I don’t do ‘hands on’ tasks? ( that sounds a bit rude. Move on along now, no happy endings here) I was shuddering for a week. Next time I’ll drag him out to the car and take him to the barber whether he likes it or not.
Last night he phoned me. Hhhmmmm, unusual. What’s he after?
Sure enough after a couple of minutes chit chat there it was;
“Ummmm, you couldn’t do me a massive favour could you.”
“I’ll try. Go on.”
“Well, King’s knocking on a bit now. He’s not going to last forever. Could you find me a bitch who’s a bit like him to mate him with? I’d like a pup from him.”
“WHAT? You want me to find someone who will be prepared to mate their prize pooch with your blind, geriatric, provenance unknown dog to give them some bizarre new breed of dog that they’ll have a whole litter of? He’s not exactly a prime specimen of doghood, is he? Why don’t you just go to the rescue and get another dog from there? There are plenty looking for homes. “
Here it is folks, the bit that just draws you in:
“But I love him. I want a pup from him so when he dies I won’t feel like I’ve totally lost him. he’s special to me is King.”
Oh for Gawd’s sake! What am I going to do with him? I’ll tell you what I won’t be doing though – walking up to the owners of dachshunds, spaniels, chihuahuas and the like and asking if they’d like a litter of pups from King, who I have to say I’m not even sure is up to the task.
This time, little brother, you’re on your own.
What would you do?