I’m posting it on the blog so I have to do it: I’m teaching Bright Italian.
No, I do not currently speak Italian, but I’m working on that.
But why, you ask?
Well, for one thing, I’m sick of strangers giving my dog commands. Can I get an amen?
“Oh can I say hi to your dog?”
“Sure, just give me a second to get her situated. Bright, s-“
You have to imagine that swooping inflection that people use when speaking to dogs and babies. Now imagine me getting extremely sassy and telling this goof ball that his behavior is totally inappropriate. First of all, Bright doesn’t respond to sing-songy talk like that, because I don’t do it. She thinks it’s a game. Great. Now it’s time for a game. Second of all, GB (yes, that’s abbreviated goof ball) had the wherewithal to ask if he could pet the dog. Did he lose his brain when I said yes? She’s not a remote controlled car. You don’t get to just flip a switch and make her do stuff.
I know that all sounds kind of comical, but it’s really a problem. My dog’s interactions with others are supposed to be controlled in a way that reinforces that I’m in charge. When other people give her commands, especially in a way she’s not used to, it’s confusing for her and disruptive for me.
Anyway, I know German is more commonly used for dogs, but Bryan and I are really working hard at learning Italian, so it seems like kind of a fun project to not leave Bright out. I promise to post updates.
First command: Sedutto. Who can translate that? (No Google Translate, you stinking cheaters.)
She responds very appropriately to sedutto if I’m sitting in my living room, holding a piece of popcorn…we’re working on the whole generalization thing now. My first bilingual dog…wish us luck!