Brooke here.

Brown and I are taking a course at a local community college. The title of the course is “Introductory Cabinet Making.” However, as it’s being taught by a master carpenter who just happens to be the head Sensei at Brown’s Aikido dojo, and as he rarely gets the opportunity to practice traditional Japanese woodworking techniques, and as we’re the only two students in the class, and as it’s a three-hour class which meets twice a week, the title of the course should be “Introduction to How Japanese Craftsmen Design Furniture to Emulate the Natural Patterns of the Tree, No, Put That Down, We Do Not Use Such Crude Devices as Nails.”

I’m learning a lot. Such as how everything I’ve ever done with wood in my entire life has been completely wrong.  Or, at best, the work of a ham-fisted barbarian maid.  Did you know that Japanese craftsmen can build boxes with joints so tight that they can be used to store water?  Did you know that I can’t?  Did you know that wet sawdust is extremely difficult to sweep up?

Anyhow, I told you that story to tell you this one.

Next to the woodworking studio is this wonderful old rambling antique shop.  The kind that’s invitation only, because if you went in unescorted you’d fear for your life.  I’ve never seen it unlocked, or anyone moving around inside.  Outside of the shop are a few items too heavy to toss a rope around and drag off with a truck.  There’s a few bronze fountains, a few fountain shells, and whatever the hell this is supposed to be:

The artist was working towards a very particular vision...
The artist was working towards a very particular vision…

(I can’t deprive you guys a close-up of the bigger bear-cat-thing’s O-face.)

Any caption I add would be sad and inadequate.
Any caption I add would be sad and inadequate.

But there is also this divine Chinese Fu Dog.  It’s about 36″ tall (by contrast, the bear-cat sex scene is twice its size and towers above me).

He is SO DEAR!
He is SO DEAR!

I am wildly in love with this thing.  I’m obsessing about him.  Brown’s been suffering through my madness, and it’s getting worse.  Take our chat from yesterday, when I linked him to all of the Fu Dogs in Google Images.


ME: None of them are as cute as Murphy.

BROWN: ………….. implying the one at the store has a name.

ME: Look at them!  Murphy’s happy.  He’s loving life.  Those others are dead, soulless husks.

BROWN: What’s Murphy made from again? Carved soapstone?

ME: Poured concrete.

BROWN: ………….. uh-huh.

ME: Hey, Murphy might not be made from solid stone, but it’s what’s inside that counts.

BROWN: If Murphy is full of money, that’s probably true.

So the project list has been expanded to: (a) determining how much Murphy costs; and (b) determining how much Murphy weighs.  The sensible part of me hopes he comes back at Ridiculously Expensive and Unmovably Heavy so I can get on with my life.  The rest of me has a spot by the gates picked out for him.


10 thoughts on “Murphy!

  1. Murphy looks a lot like Muffie! Do you want to stand Muffie by your gate??? Right now, she can’t move anywhere much … and she’s not nearly as heavy as Murphy!

  2. My husband said that if he found something like that on our property when he got home, he would see if it was mightier than a sledgehammer.

  3. Murphy’s nice, but the bear-cat travesty made me laugh so hard my dog looked at me like she was worried I was about to die.

  4. Since enough people on the actual continent have offered to help you absond with it, all I can say is that it looks like it needs a strong foundation to stand on…

    The cat/bear ‘What are you doing? That isn’t BITING!!’ statue might be better as a conversation piece though…

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