Based on the fact that it has been two months and I have yet to hear a reply from my previous missive I thought I might just overlook that certain oversight and rather take the opportunity to ask a little advice based on the following rant.
Traveling instructions for Bianca B Fishbone
½ Package of Frozen meat/cheese mixture
3 x ¼ inch slices of raw potato chopped coarsely
2 slices of raw red pepper also chopped coarsely
½ Cup dry dog food
For our convenience, she has been trained to “Do Her Business” in the house. We use pads specially designed for this purpose but you can use a towel if that works.
Have a great time with our little Bianca and give her lot’s of hugs and belly rubs.
This careful and well thought out regimen seems to afford Bianca with a little digestive short hand. Rather than the formation of a stool Bianca produces instead a substance the consistency of roofing tar which(apparently a sign of responding well to her training)she seems to have no compunction depositing anywhere(other than outside) she pleases including her bed. Fortunately her rear end is usually sewn shut from a big mat of unruly fur which has a filtering effect. Without this I am sure she could paint the walls from three feet away.
So the “missing” instruction would read as follows: While waiting for Bianca to “Do Her Business,” prepare a warm tub(About 105 degrees)and, with a dab of hypo allergenic soap, gently clean all fecal matter from approximately the lower third of her body. While she is air drying you can replace all of her bedding and scrape the little bits off the wall.
Sometimes here at Barksville we find it necessary to be liberal with the interpretation of instructions.
But what I meant to ask about here and, as I said, I mean to call upon your newly acquired mediation skills, is the notion of instructions and how do you get one to both comprehend and “Obey” them. If we are liberal with customer’s instructions on occasion how should we expect others to not follow suit? Straight up we don’t always follow things to the tee because some of them are beyond ridiculous. Secondly we don’t throw these lapses of customer trust in their faces. Nobody, for instance, save for Phyllis and myself need know that little Pooky missed out on the daily requested expression of her anal glands most(okay all)of the days she stayed with us. Nor do we feel the need to inform Blanche’s owners that we sometimes “forgot” to apply her s.p.f. 30 medicated lip balm every day during her stay partly because it was overcast but also because it was stupid.(You think I am kidding.) But never do we decide not to feed them or give them fresh water or generally try to insure they have a good time here.
Justification in Bianca’s case comes from the perception that her instructions, especially if you take into consideration the “missing” one, often seem a lot to ask in exchange for $25.00. And let’s face it if she misses out on a few juliennes of red pepper what of real consequence could go wrong? On the other hand asking us to feed her, look after her and make sure she has a little fun seems perfectly in line. Even if she does tend to bite as a general response to any interaction.
So all this begs the question, if we have no problem following basic valid instructions how might we go about getting customers to follow suit?
In our case we have a few simple requests which seem reasonable enough. But maybe they’re not? You tell me Mister Mediator. In particular there are three signs on the gates to our yard. They all say the same thing. The main body has four words(five if a contraction counts as two). “DON’T OPEN THIS GATE” Then, you are asked to honk your horn or call our cell number. To us the sentiment seems relatively straightforward. They stay there, make their presence known and then we come meet them at the gate. The consequences of not following these instructions could be tragic considering the proximity of the highway but for many customers there is a certainty that we must be referring to somebody else. And, to boot, they do it blatantly in front of us. Now had the sign read “ Women, Please Remove All Clothing Before Proceeding Through the Gate” or “Please Note: All Men Are Requested to Express Their Anal Glands and Apply Lip Balm Before Proceeding Through the Gate,” I would expect some non-compliance, at least from the men. As this clearly isn’t the case we occasionally are a bit mystified. We have tried everything.
English is the predominant language in these parts and so we have chosen to write the signs in English. We also express our concerns about the gate repeatedly throughout our website complete with reasons and illustrations why we feel it is important. You know, things like; “This is Pooky (picture of Pooky)This is Pooky after you let her out the gate and 9 of the 18 wheels of a semi-truck have crushed her(picture of cow patty)”
I have tried nice polite reminders. “Please in future just wait at the gate O.K? You never know who is here and believe me there are some crafty ones” “Oh yeah, no problem,” they might say only to offend again and again. I have tried sarcasm. “Boy some people(indicating an imaginary person to my left) don’t read our signs at all.” I might say while they walk through the gate apparently sure they’re not “that” person. I have tried clear bold statements. For instance one guy sent his 11 year old kid to open the main gate thinking he might drive right in despite the fact that there were 9 dogs just on the other side of it. When I saw the kid making the attempt I ran from the house in a rage “Hey(dumb ass)don’t even consider opening that gate! There is a sign right there(pointing to it just in case he was having trouble comprehending) and you could have gotten a dog killed.” He replied, “I wouldn’t let that happen.” I replied, “As if 9 dogs are going to just sit there while you slide open a 16 foot gate. You have no idea what you could have let happen you hapless git now call your kid away from that gate or I’ll cave in his head!” This said with little bits of spit flying about and other signs of madness maybe a bit like the gorilla at the zoo. This one actually worked mind we never saw that customer again.
Anyway, short of padlocking our gate I thought you might be able to shed a bit of wisdom on creative ways to engage the reader that are as effective as the last one but perhaps less damaging to the overall theme here at Barksville.
I trust all is well in the Capital city?
I remain, slightly short of being affectionately referred to as, “level headed,”