Hodgepodge: August 18, 2012

by Roy Hodge

I guess you never know what you’re going to see. Last week, when I was backing into a parking spot on the street in Skaneateles and watching traffic through the rear view mirror, I saw a motorcycle approaching.

The cycle had a side car and as it passed by, we realized that the passenger was a very contented looking pooch wearing goggles – or as we were told later by a very dedicated dog fancier – the happy passenger was wearing its Doggles.

Looking up “Doggles on Google” — say that one fast five times — I discovered that Doggles — said to be protecting the world…one dog at a time — are a commercial brand of sunglasses for dogs, in the form of tinted goggles designed to fit the shape of a dog’s head.

The Doggles Co. in North Carolina is the home of “the world’s best and only” eyewear made just for dogs. It was invented by a young couple after they noticed their dog squinting in the sunlight. Doggles have been sent to Army dogs working in Iraq and Afghanistan for protection from sun and desert sand storms.

Despite once being listed as one of the “most useless inventions ever,” Doggles were ranked number six in a list of “Eleven ideas that shouldn’t have worked – but made millions” by MSN Money.

So there, now you know something about Doggles, and at least one dog — the one I saw in Skaneateles — might feel a little better about riding around in his owner’s motorcycle side car.

Sheena, our much-loved canine companion, never wore Doggles or anything like them. I never noticed her squinting in the sun. If she did, I probably thought she was winking at me.

Sheena never rode in a motorcycle side car, but she did enjoy having the window in the car down a little sometimes. Who knows, maybe a pair of custom fitted Doggles would have been just the thing.

But the leather jacket with zippered “paw-kets” to share treats? That would have been a stretch.

*  *  *  *  *

My little neighbor friend, Andrew, came out of his house a couple of days ago wearing — not his Spiderman costume, which is one of his favorite selections of clothing  these days — but a Boston Celtics sweatshirt.

Immediately, my mind flashed back to the days when I, a little older than Andrew is now, was an avid fan of an NBA basketball team – but it wasn’t the Boston Celtics.

My favorite NBA team at the time I’m thinking about — in the early 1950s — was the Syracuse Nationals. The Syracuse Nats were an original member of the National Basketball Association and, of course, a hometown favorite.

The NBA was a small league at the beginning. I think I remember all of the teams – the Nats, the Celtics, the New York Knicks, the Philadelphia Warriors (Wilt Chamberlain’s first pro team), the St. Louis Hawks, the Minneapolis Lakers, the Rochester Royals and the Fort Wayne Pistons.

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