Posted by: patenttranslator | August 7, 2013

Lazy Days Are Here Again

One of the advantages of being a freelance translator is that some of the time, although unfortunately not most of the time, when you feel like being lazy for a day or two, you can just go ahead, be lazy and stay that way, for a day, or two, or three.

Being lazy for more than three days is not recommended as it may then prove difficult to snap out of the state of blissful contempt for things having to do with work and return back to the harsh reality, which is often full of unreasonable people who seem to be making all kinds of outlandish claims on our precious time after days of idle, slothful and  so enjoyable hibernation.

After all, none of us is indispensable. We might not like the idea that we don’t really matter that much, but the fact is that, as somebody once famously said, graveyards are full of indispensable people.

This morning, after I finished proofreading my translation of a fascinating German industrial standard for measurement of various parameters describing the sedimentation process during the development of floating-capable particles of dust, I realized that I don’t feel like working anymore today. So instead of trying to finish my next German to English project, or to start the Czech to English translation that I just received today, I started reading “Death Benefit” by Robin Cook and now I am writing this post for my blog.

In my present state of mind, I am the beneficiary of much needed moral support from my son’s lazy dog Lucy who returned to a hero’s (or heroine’s in this case) welcome to our house just two days ago, riding shotgun and sticking her beautifully ugly dog’s face out of the car window in exactly the same way as she was doing it during her much lamented departure 7 months ago.

It turns out that the incredibly ignorant people of North Dakota outlawed the gentle breed of pitbull from the their state. It is illegal to be a pitbull in the entire state of North Dakota! Can you believe it? What’s wrong with those people? The cold weather must be affecting their brain. And because my son needs to work there for another half a year or so, we will again become Lucy’s more than willing guardians for the next six months.

Lucy has a very good effect on me for a number of reasons.

I don’t feel guilty if I don’t feel like working (although I do have two jobs waiting for me here, but both with a reasonable deadline) when I see that lazy dog lying on the bed and getting up mostly only when she smells food from the kitchen, or when a dog owner is being walked by a dog past our house and the dog thus needs reminding in the form of a few very loud barks that this is another dog’s house.

Lazy dog Lucy needs to be walked three times a day, which is very good exercise for me, even in the hot and muggy days of summer. Another benefit of walking her around our neighborhood is that this will indubitably reintegrate this solitary and curmudgeonly freelance translator back into the rest of the humankind because when I meet other people who are being walked by their dogs, I am forced to say “hello” to them and sometime even to talk to them for a few minutes.

This is mostly beneficial to me as I need to have access to the latest gossip and other information about my neighbors. Only dogs or small children make it easy for people to talk to each other these days. In fact, in American suburbia, very few people walk these days at all unless they push a stroller or walk a dog, because everything else tends to be done by car. And you can’t really talk to other people from your car (except when you are giving them the finger, which is a frequent occurrence also known as flipping the bird).

I feel so sorry for the kids in my neighborhood who have no choice but to keep riding their black, blue, yellow and pink bikes, wearing a huge helmet on their little heads in the same stupid cul-de-sacs every day, bored out of their mind, except when their parents have the time to drive them to a playground or to an expensive and garish “kids entertainment” place like Chuck E. Cheeze.

They will have to wait until they turn sixteen to taste sweet freedom on hot asphalt behind the wheel of their car. And their parents will be worried sick … and then another wooden cross with a sad makeshift shrine and a sign saying “We love you John” or “In memory of Tracy” will suddenly appear on Cedar Road.

When I was a little kid, I had the run of a whole medieval town, including the castle and the gardens above the castle in Český Krumlov, and I was free to play Cops and Robbers with my buddies anywhere I wanted to in the whole town until dusk.

The kids here have no idea what they’re missing.

Now that Lucy is back, children in my neighborhood will be stopping their bikes again and eagerly asking for a permission to pet this ferocious looking but very sweet and gentle pitbull, which shall be graciously granted.

I will make sure to tell to every one of these little suburbia’s prisoners how misinformed and misguided those North Dakotans are.

Like I said, the cold weather during the long winters there must be affecting the complicated cerebral processes occurring in the brain of mostly monolingual people.

My son understands that this must sadly be the case in North Dakota. He told me that once he makes enough money there, he is going in a few months back to California again, where just like in Virgina, all dogs are equal and legal as long as their owner pays a small amount every year to the City Hall, in return for which the law abiding owner will be mailed a dog ID which could come in handy should the dog become lost.


  1. So glad you have your canine friend back! The universe clearly knows you need her…


  2. Thank you.

    Maybe God does exist …..


  3. One of my best friends has a pit bull (also a female) called Diva; she is such a funny and sweet dog. Another one has a Rottweiler called Devil, but despite the name he’s a gorgeous, friendly and playful animal. It all depends on how they have been raised; it has less to do with the breed.


  4. Yes, everything depends on how people raise and treat their dogs.

    The smaller ones are usually noisier and sometime more dangerous than big dogs like pit bulls.


    • I like small dogs just as much as big ones (except for a few that are really noisy and annoying – like chihuahuas).


  5. This condemnation of the breed rather than some of the idiots who keep pit bulls is despicable. The troublesome dogs I have known all had troublesome or incompetent owners; better to screen them than worry so much about the breed of dog. A drug dealer with a mastiff, German Shepherd, Dobermann, Rottweiler or even a toy poodle is probably no better than one with a pit bull. And I have known a few very wonderful pit bulls. Sounds like yours is one of the many with class 🙂


  6. War on drugs, war on terror, war on pit bulls …. America, the insane country, where some states are still more insane than the rest of them.


  7. Missed this till now – feeling happy for you :).
    I’ve been a dog-lover from the day I was born when my English aunt had a marvellous Airedale called Pooky whom she had to leave behind when it behooved us all to escape from Czechoslovakia after the Communist takeover in 1948.
    As a young boy growing up in London we lived in a flat where, alas, animals were taboo but I took different routes walking to and from school so that I could stroke as many dogs – and cats – as possible on my 20 minute journey. I also carried sugar-lumps for the milkman’s horse – always checking that the big beasts were friendly and holding the lumps on my flat palms ..
    Now, here in the Czech Republic, my partner and I have 3 dogs, all of very different shapes and sizes ranging between small and medium, hairy and sleek – Stella, a brindled 1/2 pointer, Nelson a little bundle of fluff who was a tiny puppy with only one eye in its socket when we confiscated him from our neighbours and brought him to our vet who not only put the eye back but a month later Nelson started seeing with it again, and my partners all-black mongrel – father 1/2 pitbull 1/2 labrador, mother a long-haired dachshund. Then, last but not least there are the 3 cats who run their own lives and come and go through little gates ithrough the doors into the garden and out into the wide-world beyond – but still have remarkable ears that are especially well-tuned to shouts of jidlo with the j pronounced like a y – the Czech word for food.. Tenzing is a tiny, delicate dark brindled female climber, Deathray a robust ginger tom is named after a facebook friend who is a big cat-lover, and Ponoshky – a phonetic spelling of the Czech word for socks, of which she has four white ones, a robust grey tabby who doesn’t put up with any nonsense from either beasts or humans. I love ’em all :).


  8. “Now, here in the Czech Republic, my partner and I have 3 dogs, all of very different shapes and sizes”

    Is one reason why you moved to Czech Republic (Prague?) that it’s easier to have dogs there than in London?

    Just wondering.


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