Monday, October 24

Two for two!!

Another fine day of weather for the Halloween Howl in Carl Schurz Park, a dog costume contest I’ve been competing in for many years. Lucky for me I spotted Tammy and Sparta, the “Doggie in the Window” whom I met on Saturday in Tompkins Square. I had clued her in on the Howl and I was very pleased to see her. We joined forces, minding each others’ belongings while taking turns visiting the many tables of samples and information being offered the throng.

The Howl grows year by year and this year they added two categories: kids and dogs (most welcome!) and NYC theme (oh, okay.) And smartly they had the kids go first. I was delighted not to be competing with these adorable anklebiters. Next came the biggest category: small dogs with a field of 105. (This, too, was welcome. Perhaps large and small dogs will take turns going first, which would be fair rather than the usual cooling of heels for small dogs.) We lined up to parade past the judges.

Despite my adjustments to the jacket of the pin cushion, it kept shifting to one side and I spent the whole time, it seemed to me, pushing it back in place. Surely that had doomed us, I thought. At least when I don’t win I’ll know why. But I was glad to see that the repaired pins all stayed in place and looked quite good. The yarn “thread” I glued into the needle eyes stayed in place, too. And Macaroon even kept the thimble hat on while we paraded.

When the winners were being announced, I told Tammi I felt like just going back to our seats. All these years and I’d never gotten –you should pardon the expression – a sniff at this competition. That’s why my jaw dropped when “Number 69 (Indeed!) The pin cushion!” was proclaimed the champion! With Macaroon in my arms (so I wouldn’t have to shift the pin cushion once more)I strode forward to collect my prize and accept Macaroon’s ribbon. What an awesome moment!

And here’s the ultimate irony. If I asked you to match prize and venue would you put “$20 gift certificate” in the East Village or the Upper East Side?

At last I have won the Carl Schurz contest! I only wish my friend Lynne had been there.

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