Written Aug. 1990
He’s big, he’s black, ferocious and a cupcake all wrapped up into one unique. His name, Butch. The stalwart knight ~ the guardian of the domain keeps watch over what we call home on Hurst Ave. Hurst is a quaint, and usually quiet, with periodic traffic which consists of athletes, restaurant help and beach goers.
Eight years ago Butch’s life was much different from what it is today. He worked as a blood donor, he didn’t have family, And, although his life had meaning, it was empty. He was caged up.
Our knight in shinning flee collar is a slightly rotund Labrador retriever which has brought much color to Marguex’s and my life. Butch is a dog of an independent mind. I recognized this fact when once I tied his leash to the newspaper stand outside of Surf Liquor. Something, of course, caught his attention so Butch took off in full gallop with the metal newspaper stand dragging behind him down Seaward Ave. like a tin can rolling down a driveway. Newspapers dramatically flying into the air, I chased after him mortified but relieved that the stand missed crashing through the large glass display window by an inch.
Like any knight of the realm, Butch’s rather ample figure serves many functions in his roll as personal protector. He accompanied me roller skating and only after the beginning of our trek it was I that was accompanying him as he pulled me down the street at warp speed.
Most importantly, this K-9 provides freedom and security. Eight years ago Hurst Ave. had constant traffic. The neighborhood consisted of drug dealers and the headquarters for the Orphan Motorcycle gang. Interesting, to say the least. But our home has never been broken into. I can leave Marguex home alone with confidence. And, I can take runs at almost any hour with very little threat.
When I arrive at the door or awaken from a good nights rest Butch staying true to the nature of a retriever, always brings me a present. It may be a leaf, an avocado pit, a flower, or a particular tempting piece of underwear. Guardian, Knight, friend; Protector of all I hold dear.
* Butch passed on Saturday, November 25, 1995. Dr. Gray came to our home where he administered the compassionate injection and most tender words I’ve ever heard in such a situation. My friends & neighbor were there to comfort and help the doctor removed Butch’s 15 1/2yr. old tired body.