It’s called a “Coping Mechanism.”

25 Jan

There are a million awesome things that come with being a nanny. First of all, I nanny for one absolutely adorable 4 month old little boy. He is  precious 97% of the time.

Another great thing about being a nanny is the down time. Don’t get me wrong, when he’s awake, it’s a full time, very involved job. But I get time to myself whenever he is asleep, which is several hours a day (other than today, obviously.)

Other positives include fun things like walks and playtime. Also, if you’ve never had the opportunity to dress a child up and take them out in public, you’re missing out. They love the attention, and people love to give it to them.

It’s motherhood without the responsibility of being up all hours of the night and going through labor and all of that pain. I get the best part of the day, get to watch him grow, play, roll over, talk, etc. It’s a dream.

Negatives?

One word: vomit. Or puke, throw up, spit up, tossed cookies, barf, or any of the other synonyms you’d like to use. Any way you say it, it is still one of the more disgusting bodily functions, and up until now, has not been a part of my everyday routine. Now, it’s just a fact of life. It’s on my clothes, face, jewelry, and I suppose if my hair were longer than my ears, it would be there too. Not that I can complain that much, I mean he’s the one that has to deal with the physical act of throwing up, which is at least as bad as the vomit itself, on top of the fact that he stays covered in it 99% of the time as well.

Another negative: which is the main reason for this post in the first place. Pets.

Okay, here’s the thing. I love animals, for the most part. If it has legs, I’m generally okay with it. This family however, has 2 Italian Greyhounds. If you’ve never experienced an Italian Greyhound, let me just fill you in.

So they look pretty harmless, right? (Other than the disgusting Paris Hilton flashback you get when looking at them)

Wrong.

These things are the bain of my existence. My employers have two: Pacha (female, named for a club on an island off the coast of Spain), and Vespa (You got it: named for the Italian scooter.). Not only do they have pretentious names, they themselves embody this to the Nth degree.

Pacha is the less annoying of the two. She is generally good natured, however her affinity for attempting to lick up puke from any and every surface as soon as it occurs is annoying. Another thing I’ve noticed is that if I’m not conscious of where my morning coffee cup is at every second, I will turn around and have to bat her off the coffee table, where she is enjoying the coffee that I just poured. Not okay.

Vespa is the real problem. I do not use the word hate lightly, however, I have no other word for the emotion I feel when encountering this “dog.” I put that word in quotations because I had a friend once tell me that he didn’t consider anything a “dog” if he was able to punt it more than 25 yards. I feel this to be a pretty consistently applicable guideline, so I am adopting it as my own.

Here’s a typical encounter with Vespa.

I have gotten in the habit of siting in a chair with an ottoman that directly faces the couch where Vespa is content to perch for hours on end. Naptime is Vespa’s favorite time to drive me insane. I’ll be quietly reading, minding my own business, when I’ll suddenly hear a high pitched squealing/whining sound. I made the mistake once of looking up from my book to see what the problem was. Bad idea.

He took that as an invitation to leap off the couch (where by the way, I forgot to mention, he is curled up on my coat, which he considers his personal throne), jump up onto the ottoman, into my lap, climb my chest with his front paws, and stare at me, and proceed to claw my face with his disgusting nails, all while barking ferociously (for such a tiny mangy animal) as if I had murdered his firstborn son.

The obvious reaction on my part should be to scream and pummel the little monster to bits, but the other problem with this situation is that my boss (who is wonderful, but doesn’t see the terror that this beast causes) stays in her office on the same floor with the door cracked. Needless to say, she may overhear if I go postal on her “dog.”

I once asked her why it is that he whines. Because I’m trying to come up with a coping mechanism for this mutt, and if I could figure out why he is crying, maybe I could ward off the attacks. She told me, “He’s just cold.”

Excuse me. Why is the dog cold? It’s 73 degrees in this house. The dog is not cold. She told me that when he was a puppy, he was always cold, so they covered him with a blanket, and now, he can’t burrow himself in the blanket and needs a person (namely me, in this situation) to pick up the blanket, call sweetly to him, and cover him up, so he can lay down and get warm.

Hell no.

I’m not even sure how to end this post, except to say that I will be keeping you updated on the situation, and if anyone has ideas as to how I should deal, I appreciate the imput.

I hear the click-clack of little claws. Here comes the little monster now. Back to work.

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One Response to “It’s called a “Coping Mechanism.””

  1. Kit Powell January 25, 2010 at 1:15 pm #

    I think that you should set up a decoy in a room far away, complete with coat, coffee, and rachel-dummy and lure him in there. Done and done.

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