Saturday, July 29, 2006

COOPER 1994-2006
















Click on photo to enlarge - photo by Mary Anne

Cooper, an eternal puppy, passed into the hereafter on Tuesday, July 25th.
He was a 12 year-old pup and the much loved companion of our friend Mary Anne.

The following words come from the person who best knew Cooper.


From Mary Anne...

"Cooper was a yellow lab, though a lot of people asked if he was part Dane because he was so leggy and tall. He didn't have a single mean or aloof fiber in his body; strangers were just friends he hadn't met yet.

He lived to play fetch (eating came a distant second) and was happy to play with anyone who would throw a stick or ball or frisbee or pine cone. But, it was always my feet he would be curled up under at the end of the day, and I think he always kept tabs on where I was. Whenever we'd go hiking, he would run ahead up the trail but come back every couple of minutes and bump my hand with his nose before taking off again. Being a lab, he loved the water, even half-frozen Big Bear Lake in the middle of winter.

He had an exuberant life, and I often wished I could approach each day with even half my dog's attitude. Recently, when the eager light went out of his eyes and he showed no interest in balls, squeaky toys, swimming, kibbles, or my proximity, I knew it was time.... "



















Click on photo to enlarge

Cooper endeared himself to Peggy and I during one of his first social events, a small gathering of wildlife biologists, botanists, muscians, old & young hippies, and other odd folks, including, of course, several dogs.

We were all just getting to know each other and came together at our house for the afternoon to share some food, stories, and music.

The appetizer was a giant bowl of home-made hummus in the center of the table, and, as we sat down to dip our chips, Cooper, always ready to play, tossed a big slobbery pine cone in the air, which went up over our heads and plopped right into the middle of the bowl of fresh hummus.

There was a moment of silence as we all sat there stunned, before breaking into hysterical laughter, tossing the pine cone back to Cooper, scooping up our hummus, and with some humility, delighting in being initiated to the slobbery spirit of Cooper's carefree dog silliness.

Cooper gave us a very funny moment, an ice-breaking test of just how down to earth our little group was, and I think we passed the test...

Today, in his memory, Peggy made up a bowl of hummus, I plopped a pine cone in it, and we toasted glasses of wine to Cooper.

Here's to you Boy!

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17 Comments:

Anonymous mary anne said...

But, did you get Dallas to slobber on the pine cone before you plopped it in the hummus? :)

Jim and Peggy, thanks for your sweet tribute to my goofy old dog.

5:56 PM  
Blogger David said...

great story for the good dog, from two terrific old hippies. thanks for the info on the spider. did you want him for a pet?

7:37 PM  
Blogger Abandoned in Pasadena said...

Your tribute to Cooper brought tears to my eyes...I have a passion for dogs and especially big slobbery ones.

7:55 PM  
Blogger lenĂ© said...

Your generosity of spirit warms my heart, Jim. I hope I can be as open to life's realities as you and Peggy are.

Here's to Cooper.

8:42 PM  
Blogger madcapmum said...

Was Cooper a yellow lab? He looks like the pup next door. A friendlier dog you couldn't find.

7:18 AM  
Blogger javaseeker said...

Cheers to Cooper and life well spent. Next time Becca and I devour our garlicky hummus, we'll certainly smile and think of the three of you...

8:53 AM  
Blogger Jim said...

mary anne-

Dallas didn't seem the slightest bit interested in slobbering on the pine cone for me, there was only one Cooper

And yes, he was a bit goofy.

Goofy, sweet, lovable, and playful to the extreme, which made your old pal quite unforgettable.

david-

Thank you, and if that spider is unwelcome there it can certainly weave it's web here. There's plenty to eat and I can always use another subject for photography.
;~)

aip-

I know from your blog that you are a sensitive and loving person who would have been right at home dipping slobbery hummus with us that day.

lene-

You are wide open to life's realities already, as is proven by the always beautiful writing you do at Whorled Leaves and Counting Petals.

Your deep love of nature is vividly revealed in your words and your photographs.

madcapmum-

I'm sure Cooper was at least part Yellow Lab but I don't know if he was pure bred. Maybe Mary Anne will answer that, but I do know he was very very friendly.

javaseeker-

...and maybe someday, if your real lucky, a new friend will bring a big puppy to the party to slobber in that garlic hummus for you...
;~)

9:46 AM  
Anonymous mary anne said...

Cooper was a yellow lab, though a lot of people asked if he was part Dane because he was so leggy and tall. He didn't have a single mean or aloof fiber in his body; strangers were just friends he hadn't met yet.

He lived to play fetch (eating came a distant second) and was happy to play with anyone who would throw a stick or ball or frisbee or pine cone. But, it was always my feet he would be curled up under at the end of the day, and I think he always kept tabs on where I was. Whenever we'd go hiking, he would run ahead up the trail but come back every couple of minutes and bump my hand with his nose before taking off again. Being a lab, he loved the water, even half-frozen Big Bear Lake in the middle of winter.

He had an exuberant life, and I often wished I could approach each day with even half my dog's attitude. Recently, when the eager light went out of his eyes and he showed no interest in balls, squeaky toys, swimming, kibbles, or my proximity, I knew it was time....

10:19 AM  
Anonymous andi rogers said...

Hello Jim and Peggy.. Thanks for the beautiful words about Cooper.. It's been tough around here with Ella gone too.. Now those two yellows can romp in the hereafter, slobbering, and running, and eating all the delicious doggy-treats their stomachs can handle.. hope all is well..

11:43 AM  
Blogger Jim said...

andi!!!

So nice to hear from you girl, and I'm sorry to find out Ella is gone too, but like you said, now they are "romping together in the hereafter" and waiting for us to catch up with them.

Hugs to everyone in your neck of the woods...

Love, Jim & Peggy

12:46 PM  
Blogger Granny said...

It's hard to lose a beloved member of the family but the stories about him are wonderful.

I think labs are my favorite breed. There might be a cranky one out there somewhere but not any I've met.

5:09 PM  
Anonymous maureen said...

Losing a pet is like losing a child.The pain of their loss is indescribable and leaves a dark corner in your heart.

4:21 AM  
Blogger roger said...

great story! great dog. nice picture of yourselves.

roger

7:08 AM  
Blogger robin andrea said...

Beautiful tribute to a lovely dog, Jim. Cooper's good nature shines right through the photograph. Those deep eyes show the heart of a sweet doggie companion.

7:10 AM  
Blogger Deb said...

My 4 year old son saw the photo and asked "is that Sally?" Yellow labs are wonderful dogs, and you have written a wonderful tribute to a friend.

Nice photo of you and Peggy!

7:18 AM  
Anonymous vickie said...

Peace, Cooper.

9:39 AM  
Blogger annelynn said...

Amazing tribute. Thank you!

3:17 PM  

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