When I was 18, I met my first boyfriend and first love: Chip. Chip was great because he could guide me, approve of me, and make all my decisions for me. He was a dog trainer. He could teach any dog tricks. He specialized in tricks that don’t make any sense. He went to all these crazy competitions all the time with his thirty dogs and he would walk in on a cloud of every breed of dog imaginable. It was fucking beautiful. Not a leash in sight!
One day we were at The Dog Dance-Off, a local community theater show where people compete in dance-offs with their dogs and compete for MONEY.
“And now… Last year’s champion of The Dog Dance-Off, and his owner Chip Cod, will take to the stage, competing against a… (*lowers voice*) … Pomeranian?” The audience laughed. “Yes, it’s very funny,” the announcer explained, “It’s funny because
Pomeranians are stupid! Hahaha Well, where was I? Oh right, a Pomeranian by the name of Prancy, and his owner Steve Larry, will now be competing against Chip Cod and his dog… Steve Larry!!! Welcome back to the stage Steve Larry the Greyhound and welcome to the stage for the very first time… Prancy the Pomeranian! Get on stage, you four!”
The room went nearly black as a spotlight shone around the room, searching for the contestants. Steve Larry the human walked up the stairs to the stage, in his khaki cargo shorts and GAP collared shirt, and fisherman’s hat. Prancy the Pomeranian followed close behind him, shaking the whole time.
As Steve Larry and Prancy stood on stage, blinded by the spotlight, the other spotlight that was going around the room kept searching for my boyfriend Chip Cod, and his dog, Steve Larry the Greyhound.
“Ahem…” the announcer stumbled, “It appears our contestants are not in the room. If you’re in here, Chip Cod and his dog Steve Larry the Greyhound, please come to the stage…”
Suddenly, the theater entrance doors busted open, flying off their hinges, daylight blaring into the dark room, revealing a shadowy figure!
It was Chip Cod and Steve Larry the Greyhound! Madonna’s “Like A Virgin” blasted from the surrounding speakers. And like some motherfucking badass supermodels, Steve Larry the Greyhound and Chip Cod (my boyfriend), strutted their asses down the middle aisle, until they reached the front and center of the stage, decked out in feathers and balloons, glitter rained down from the ceiling onto the stage and audience as if somebody won the grand prize.
“Let’s dance motherfuckers!!!!” Chip Cod yelled from behind Steve Larry the Greyhound, so it looked like Steve Larry the Greyhound was saying it. Steve Larry was wearing a dress fit for Gwyneth Paltrow at the Oscars. Hand stitched beading freshwater pearls and thread made of solid gold, by Chip Cod himself. Steve Larry the Greyhound was also wearing a Britney Spears microphone headset. Steve Larry the Greyhound looked up into the blinding spotlight, shaking.
“Haha, quite an entrance, I would expect no less than that from Chip Cod and his dog Steve Larry the Greyhound! Let’s give them and Steve Larry and his dog Prancy the Pomeranian!” The audience was going nuts.
“Now, you know the rules, three songs are chosen at random from a spotify playlist, and whether you know the song or not, your dog needs to dance to that song, by doing the choreography you’ve taught them, what the layman calls, “tricks” haha, am I right, audience?” The audience laughed and applauded.
“Well all right, is everybody ready?” The announcer asked again, “I said… Is everybody ready?!” The audience went bezerk. One woman was screaming, another was puking.
“Let’s begin The Dog Dance-Off!!” The audience was on the edge of their seat, waiting for the first song to begin.
Suddenly, the room went dark. This time, without a spotlight. An employee selling hot dogs and peanuts tripped because it was so dark and got mustard and hot nuts all over the audience.
The first song played: “Werewolves of London:”
Werewolves of London
The chorus came on, after about 5 minutes of pitch black darkness, and a spotlight appeared on… Prancy the Pomeranian and her owner Steve Larry!
“Sit!” commanded Steve Larry. “SIT!” he demanded.
Prancy stood there on a stool with a pink fluffy pillow, shaking.
Werewolves of London
“Oh my God, he’s not sitting. He can’t even sit right now. Oh god.” Steve Larry seemed exacerbated and embarrassed. “SIT, PRANCY! SIT!” Steve Larry was losing it. The audience looked uncomfortable. Steve Larry turned to the judges, “He’s not sitting!” Steve Larry was feeling pretty dumb by now. But he got an idea. “I’ll make Prancy do another trick!” he thought.
“Shake! Shake, Prancy!”
Prancy continued to shake.
“She’s doing it!” Steve Larry exclaimed, thrilled. “Shake! Shake, Prancy!”
Prancy’s whole body was shaking.
The audience clapped. The judges wrote notes on their scorecards.
Werewolves of London
Again, the room went pitch black. “What? What?” could be heard a lot throughout the theater.
Then they appeared! Steve Larry the Greyhound shook off his Oscar dress and it turned into a dress that was on fire!!
The audience clapped and cheered, everyone was going nuts.
The announcer spoke, “I think that’s a nod to Katniss of the Hunger Games franchise!”
Chip Cod smiled knowingly, but he was a little distracted by the music, which had changed into Whitney Houston’s “I Wanna Dance With Somebody!”
“Omg omg omg I love this song!” Steve Larry the human freaked out. He turned to Prancy the Pomeranian, “You remember, don’t you boy? Do the dance I taught you! Dance your heart out to Whitney, Prancy!”
Prancy struggled to get on his hind legs and when he did, his lines were all over the place and his posture inferior. Steve Larry the Greyhound put his paw to his forehead as if to say, “Oh brother! Get a load of THIS guy!”
Steve Larry the Greyhound was up. He twirled around in a circle chasing his tail faster and faster, until he landed on a piece of cardboard on his head and started spinning on his head.
“Is that dog… breakdancing??” The announcer asked.
The judges furiously wrote down notes on their scorecards.
“All right, folks… And for our last song and most challenging: Papa Don’t Preach!!”
“Papa I know you’re going to be upset
‘Cause I was always your little girl
But you should know by now
I’m not a baby…”
Steve Larry raised a finger as if to say, “Ah-ha, I have a trick up my sleeve that will make me win the money in the competition!” He went offstage for a second and came back with a hula hoop. But then he started looking around the room, sweating. He went backstage again and came out with an aerosol can of something. He dumped the liquid all over and around the hula hoop. Then he set it on fire.
He held out the hula hoop to his side, with his arm on fire. Crying, Steve Larry said, “Jump, Prancy! Jump!”
Steve Larry was wincing, “Oh god I’m burning alive! It’s really painful! Jump through the hoop, Prancy! Jump!”
Then Prancy did something spectacular. He jumped through the hoop!
Then in an instant, within a millisecond of entering the hoop, Prancy burnt up to a crisp! His ashes spread all over the audience, and people were gagging.
“Papa don’t preach I’m in trouble deep
Papa don’t preach, I’ve been losing sleep
But I made up my mind, I’m keeping my baby, hm
I’m gonna keep my baby, hm…”
Next it was Steve Larry the Greyhound’s time to shine.
And strutting her stuff down the runway was Steve Larry the Greyhound, decked the fuck out in a wedding dress, down to the NINES. Some people in the audience whispered that it was vintage Oscar de la Renta.
The announced spoke up, “Wait a minute, wait a minute, stop the… what is going on here?”
Then, from behind the backstage curtain, another Greyhound appeared! This time in groomswear!
“Haha!” The announcer laughed boisterously, “And to go with our bride, we also have a handsome groom!” Chip Cod rolled out a red carpet all in one unraveling and Steve Larry the Greyhound and his groom Greyhound catwalked down the aisle to the front of the stage.
Chip Cod got up front, opened a Bible, and then quickly closed it and looked at the audience, and raised a finger in the air, much like Steve Larry the human had done earlier. RIP.
With a little trick of his own up his sleeve, Chip Cod made a kissy sound and the two dogs kissed romantically.
Then Chip Cod raised his finger to the audience again, but this time, he motioned his hands as if to say, “Separate!” to the dogs, and the dogs quickly scooted aside, revealing…
“Oh my God! It’s a teacup Chihuahua!!!!!!!” The announcer screamed.
The audience was going insane. Some people were jumping up and down. Some people were openly weeping.
In front of the audience, and next to Steve Larry the Greyhound and his groom Greyhound, was the tiniest, gerbil-sized Chihuahua.
The Chihuahua was shaking.
“All right everyone! Everyone! Thank you for your enthusiasm, but we need to let our judges deliberate, and determine who will win the money for The Dog Dance-Off!!”
While the judges talked amongst themselves and reread their notes, Chip Cod and his three dogs went backstage, waiting to hear if their names were called.
After about 20 seconds, the announcer began his shining moment: revealing the final results.
“Now, I have the results, in my hand. Right now. The judges have discussed and come to an agreement on who… will… be. our. Champion. Are you ready, audience?!”
The audience was on the edge of their seats. People were biting their nails bloody.
“Come on!” Someone from the audience shouted.
“Yeah! Tell us who won!” Another anonymous soul yelled.
“Haha, all right. The winner… of the 50th annual The Dog Dance-Off… is…
And his owner, Chip Cod!!! Congratulations to Chip Cod and Steve Larry the Greyhound. Get on over here and collect your prizes!”
Chip Cod and Steve Larry the Greyhound walked out together back on stage and a beautiful woman in a formal blue gown placed a crown on Steve Larry the Greyhound’s head.
Steve Larry the Greyhound was panting.
The announcer walked up on the stage from where he’d been standing next to the judges. He was wearing a glittery suit that sparkled with little appliqués of different dog breeds all over, including on the pants and shoes.
The announcer went up to Steve Larry the Greyhound and Chip Cod and shook the hands of both of them.
“Fantastic win for you, yet again, our reigning champion, Chip Cod and Steve Larry the Greyhound!! Let’s hear it again for our contestants!”
The audience howled.
Someone else walked up who worked there and gave Chip Cod a trophy and an oversized check for one THOUSAND dollars.
The announcer began interviewing Chip Cod and Steve Larry the Greyhound further. The announcer raised his hand to the audience, as if to say, “Shut the fuck up now.”
“And now that you’ve won the title, the crown, the trophy, and the money, what will you do with the money?” The announcer asked inquisitively.
“Well Steve Larry the Greyhound and I plan to travel the world together. We’re going to see Machu Picchu, The Eiffel Tower, The Statue of Liberty, and others.”
“That’s beautiful,” the announcer said, kind of listening. “And one last question before we leave tonight: Is there anything you’d like to say to the kids out there watching tonight on public-access television, who are looking up to someone like you, in the hopes that one day they, as well as their dog, get to become undefeated champion of The Dog Dance-Off?”
Without missing a beat, Chip Cod grabbed the microphone. “Actually yes, kids, stay away from your microwaves. Do not drink tea that has been microwaved. It’s how the government controls your brainwaves–”
“Uh,” The announcer quickly grabbed the microphone back from Chip Cod, “And that concludes our 50th annual The Dog Dance-Off! Thank you everyone for coming and we’ll see you again… next year!!!”
Ah yes, Chip. I remember him fondly now. My first love.
If only he hadn’t ended up in prison.