Your pictures of Ruger in action this morning personifies in my mind just what God must've had in mind here ... my favorite story of the creation of the Labrador.
The XVth Day
On the fifteenth day, or thereabout, God and the Recording Angel were just taking it easy. Spread out beneath them was The Creation, and despite last-minute changes, they were feeling rather smug with the way it had all gone; so many miracles sound easier than they really are.
God was especially interested in Adam and Eve. He considered them the centerpiece of the scheme, and as he watched them, he got the feeling something was a bit off.
Eve had taken to spending more and more time sitting and at herself in one of the pools, fussing with her hair and trying to decide which was her best side. Adam was throwing sticks in the brook and watching them sail away. As God and the Recording Angel watched, Adam threw another stick, walked over to where Eve was working on a braid, and shouted, "Back!" pointing at stick with his finger. Eve barely gave him a glance as she stuck a large red flower in her hair and continued to stare into the pool.
The Recording Angel finally broke the silence. "Lord," he said, "something's missing."
"I know," God said, "but I can't quite put my finger on it."
Adam was still standing close to Eve and watching another stick he'd thrown. This time they heard him say, "Back, Eve!" As they watched, Eve slowly got up, waded out into the water, and brought back the stick. Just as God was about to smile, Eve swung the stick and broke it against Adam's shin.
"I think he needs a creature that will play with him," God said. He made a quick motion with his forefinger, and the stick that was lying across Adam's foot suddenly became a snake. Adam looked at it for a moment and then got another stick, waved it in front the snake, threw it a few feet into the water, and shouted, "Back!" The snake looked at Adam in a curious way, then slithered over to where Eve sat and whispered something in here ear. Eve looked up at Adam and made a small circular motion with here finger at her temple. The snake seemed to nod in agreement, and the two of them went of together, leaving Adam standing alone by the edge of the water.
"It's not the right size or something," the Recording Angel said. "It ought to be bigger."
"I've got just the thing," God answered. The rock that Eve had been sitting on suddenly stood up and yawned, showing great shinning ivory teeth. God Smiled.
"What's that?" the Recording Angel asked.
"Hippo," He said, obviously pleased with himself.
Adam could see that the hippo enjoyed being in the water. He got another stick, larger than the one he'd thrown for the snake. The stick made a great splash, and Adam watched expectantly as the giant beast slid into the water and disappeared. After almost an hour and no sign of the hippo, except an occasional water spout, Adam sat down on the bank and cradled his head in his arms. He was still sitting there in the fading light when Eve returned with the snake at her side. She was carrying a handful of leaves, which she tried on, looking for Adam's approval. He finally pointed at one she'd discarded and she angrily tore it in half and tossed it in the pool.
"Eve's acting a little cross, Lord," the Angel remarked.
"Well, nobody's perfect," God answered, somewhat annoyed.
It was getting dark when God turned to the Receding Angel and said, "I'm going to hold up the night for a while until we get this thing solved. What's left in inventory for delivery?"
The Recording Angel hauled out a thick scroll and began reading out loud, starting with aardvark. God listened attentively but did nothing more than occasionally shake his read, now and then making an outline of something in the earth with the quill-end of a long white feather. At the end of the list, the Recording Angel waited fretfully for God to ask him what a zygote was, but He didn't. The Angel was quite relieved; so much small stuff tended to look alike.
Suddenly God smiled. "I think I've got it," He said, waving His hand at a small passing Cloud, which stopped and rained on the ground where He had been sketching. God began taking handfuls of mud and and shaped them this way and that. As He worked, He spoke aloud, as if to give the Recording Angel a lesson in creating.
"It's got to be just the right size; strong, but not so big it's always knocking things over," He said. "It ought to like the water about as much as the land, so we'll give a nice thick coat and a powerful tail - even webbed feet!"
"You're not making another duck, are You?" the Recording Angel asked, somewhat anxiously. He knew God loved ducks, but He'd made so many already that it was difficult to tell them apart.
"No, nothing like that at all. This creature has four legs and can't fly. The really important thing is the disposition. I don't want it to ever get cross with Adam. I want it to follow him around and be good company, to please Adam more anything else. If Adam wants to run, it will run with him; if Adam wants to play, it will play with him."
God paused for a moment and then said, "I thought Eve would be like that, but maybe I used a little too much rib."
He continued to work with the clay, broadening the head and chest, shaping the leg and tail until they were just so. He looked it over with great care, and then said in a deep and warm voice that more than hinted at His pleasure, "That's good."
The Recording Angel walked around behind him. "I really like the looks of it, Lord," he said. "What are you going to call it?"
The Lord smiled and said, "A Labrador Retriever."
"Won't that be a little hard for Adam to Spell?"
"No," He said, "all he has to remember is i before e."
Then He reached out and touched the clay and said, "Sit!" The glossy black hair rippled over the heavy muscles as the Labrador sat, brown eyes sparkling. He seemed to be begging to be asked to do something. God reach for the the Recording Angel's staff, broke off a foot or so, and threw it. Then the Lord said, "Back!"
Instantly, the Labrador broke into a full-speed run, tumble head-over-heals as he grabbed the stick, and brought it back. God threw it again, and the Labrador bounded off even more joyously. When he came back, God and the Recording Angel were grinning like schoolboys.
"Let me try it!" the Recording Angel asked, and threw the stick far across a distant stream. The Labrador leaped into the water and, almost before they could believe it, was back in front of them, quivering with happiness.
The next day, the Recording Angel and God threw more sticks and the retriever, seemingly tireless, ran and swam and brought them back with an almost palpable joy. Eve stood off to one side watching them.. Finally, she walked over, picked up a stick and threw it. The Labrador sat, watching. When she cried, "Back," he leaped into the air and almost flew into the water. Eve laughed as the droplets wet her. When he returned and gave here the stick, she took it and playfully tugged his ear. The Labrador raised his head and licked her hand. God and the Recording Angel watched her smile; it was radiant in its loveliness.
"I think I'll make one for Eve," God said.
"Exactly the same?" asked the Recording Angel.
"Yes and no," God replied.
The Recording Angel had made his staff whole again and stood leaning on it for the longest while. Then in a very quiet voice, he said, "Lord, would it be too much to ask you to make one more? Then we could keep it here just to make sure it's perfect."
The Lord smiled and said, "I was thinking the very same thing."
Remi and Rusty aren't my whole life. They're trying to fill the hole in my heart left by Cappy's passing.
I love this. I'm going to send it to my breeder. Thanks for posting this Jim.
I was just sitting here at work looking at a picture of my boy, Ruger, on the wall and thinking how much I love him. He's so willing to try anything, bless his heart. And he's so strong and fit that it amazes me everyday.