Every once in a while, a new word or phrase comes along that is so awesome and necessary, I’m forced to share it with the world. World, allow me to introduce to you to the Red Dog.
Mikey’s dad, blog reader Big Mike, took us to dinner at Guaymas last night, and as we sat on the outdoor patio at sunset, with the lights of San Francisco twinkling in the distance, I leaned over to him and said, "So tell me about this Red Dog."
A Red Dog, interestingly enough, is the annual gathering of Big Mike and his 7 fraternity buddies. Every year, they gather in a different locale, and in the words of Big Mike, "drink, eat and play golf."
"Does it ever get crazy?"
"Well, we try. But you know, Beth, at my age, crazy is probably different from your crazy. But, yeah. Sometimes it gets crazy."
Oooo, how fabulously mysterious.
"So, basically, it’d be fair to say that when we’re out, painting the town red and causing general mayhem, we’re red-doggin’ it?"
"Ha! Red-Doggin’. Yeah. I like that!"
Big Mike’s been red doggin’ it for years, and once returned from a Red Dog so pumped from the experience, he chose Red Feather for his Indian Guides name.
Oh, wait until you get a load of this.
Indian Guides is along the lines of a politically incorrect cub scouts, but it’s for fathers and sons to do together as some kind of forced outdoor bonding. Uniforms consist of leather vests made of "cow material" and everyone’s favorite accessory, the head band.
"Mikey, what was your name?"
It turns out, Black Feather was at first reluctant to discuss Indian Guides, but as I asked more and more questions, Mikey was reminded of his bizarre yet enjoyable Indian Guides misadventures. As Red Feather pointed out, the Indian Guide handbook’s instructions for meetings didn’t really gel with the needs of the Kentfield tee-pee of guides. Apparently, no one was really into crafts and singing. So, they’d go on adventures, hitting baseball games, going to history museums and riding BART.
I inquired as to why girls weren’t involved in any of this.
"Oh, but they could be, Beth."
"Yeah." said Black Feather, suddenly defensive of Indian Guides. "They had Indian Princesses."
Hmmm. Interesting. Because I didn’t realize the word ‘guide’ was gender specific.
"Oh, but dad, remember La Honda."
Apparently, there’s an annual tribal celebration, involving a huge bonfire that, to hear Red and Black Feather describe, was really the highlight of Indian Guides participation. There was also some kind of forest night walk, in which people would hide in bushes and scare the little headbanded guides as they nervously followed the path.
"Then around the bonfire, we’d have a big ceremony with the Indian Guides rituals and rites of passage, which I can’t tell you about, because you’re not an Indian Guide."
"Man, I totally remember that. That bonfire was seriously huge."sighed Black Feather, missing his headband.
"Oh yeah, it was a terrific bonfire."
Sounds to me like a Red Dog...