Sunday, November 11, 2012

Poodles and cashmere UPDATED

Dear Bisou,

What was it that made you decide that pulling sweaters out of a drawer and shredding them is now your thing? Were you inspired by the fact that this particular sweater was new (as in, as of a couple days ago, worn once), cashmere, and, while discounted at Uniqlo, still $70 so not exactly cheap? A really gorgeous, well-fitting, wear-it-for-years-type, super-professional-looking camel crewneck. First-world-problems, fine, but this is enough of my budget that I'm not sure it's the best example. (I'm on a bit of a cheapness kick, if not lockdown, until I know exactly what it is I'll be doing after grad school. With exceptions for certain things that contribute to my polished-grown-woman-ness. See: another tub of the Japanese deep-conditioner, and some better-quality - but still $9 - clear nail polish. See: that damn sweater.) But yes, there are greater problems, I myself have greater things to contend with, so by all means, Bisou, have at it. (Like all dog owners, I've Googled "can dogs eat [every possible thing that humans can eat that's fallen on the floor, or that might have, and more]." So let's add cashmere to the list.)

But why, Bisou, why? Is the lesson you're trying to teach me that I need to be neater (i.e. no part of anything poking out of a drawer even a little bit, and anything of any value kept higher than even I can reach), that I should have been more the humble grad student and contented myself with the pilling, worn-out sweaters I already owned? Both, I think. Also confirmation of what I'm always saying, that paying more for better quality almost invariably means one ends up with these precious, delicate, snag-and-stain-ready materials. A sweatshirt, for example, would still be intact. I can't imagine this is a dog-training message, as this is not something you'd done before, and you're not exactly charging after any drawers and/or sweaters right now.



As feared/predicted, repairing this would cost more than the sweater itself. I think this is where I learn how to turn what's left of the sweater into a scarf, or poodle-toy, or who knows.


kei said...

Was the sweater brand new? If not, I suspect she's smart enough to figure out that it smells like you and can also figure out that it has value to you. Mitsu only takes certain things away, things we care about, so that we'll chase her for the thing and engage her, which is all she wants. Sounds like Bisou could've just been up to mischief on her own though. The only thing Mitsu has destroyed was a religious/spiritual tablet/thingie representative of my late grandfather, which is probably the worst thing a dog can destroy! Mitsu's Japanese Shiba friends (owners) on Instagram told me, "She just wanted to play with your grandfather." Knowing that it was our (humans) fault, that was a bit comforting; but I'm afraid I can't extend that kind of anthropomorphism onto the (poor?) sweater.

Phoebe said...


Wow, Mitsu really, really went for symbolism! Having a dog (except some service-dog-level well-behaved one) probably does mean not being able to care that much about one's stuff.

But I think you're right that dogs are smart enough to know what it is we'll chase after. For example, my hideous and ill-fitting Patagonia Kids rain jacket from who knows when continues to sit draped over a chair Bisou could very well yank it off of, but she could not care less. Bisou must have seen me move this sweater (which I had worn once, the previous day) out of harm's way, and thought, if I run around with that, I'll get her attention! And I totally would have chased after her/it, except when I heard the tearing sound, it was from the part of the room where she keeps the blanket she sleeps on/tears at. I assumed she was in Good Dog mode, and let her entertain herself.

On the bright side, I found a tailor who pitied me and will (try to) fix the mess for $40.

Britta said...

FYI, some Uniqlo cashmere sweaters are now on sale for $40.

Phoebe said...


Thanks for letting me know! Happily, given that I've already committed to having this repaired for $40, it's not among those discounted. What I have to do now, though, is resist the sale.