Dog Story Two

1 S:                                      [e- \$O : :  h  h h\$ ]=j::eez.=

2                   =[.hhh hhh heh heh heh heh u-heh-]

3 D:                  [°Heh  heh  heh  heh (heh)°I flip]\$on\$ the li:ght-, over there

4                   sha:kin his head lookin \$at the be:d,\$ you know. .hhh >And th-

5                   then< what I- while I- while I got the li:ght on, he ju:mps up

6                  \$on (th)ere again\$ l:ooks at it, an(d) la:ys do:[wn.(°Go:d°)]

7 S:                                                                   [hh hhh hh ] >I can

8                   jus(t) see- get up, on the bed, and (he'll think)< ­Go:d da:mn,

9                   who: m:oved this bed, right? =.eh hhhh=heh heh he[h eh- eh- eh- eh-

10 D:                                                                                        [°heh heh heh°

11                   Yeah]=                     >°he says°< ­ It was just there fi:ve minutes ago:, how

12                   come it                   moved                   over:.=

13 S:                  =Ughh[h,

14 D:                       [I jump and it mo:v[ed.

15 S:                                          [.hhh He probably thinks it's some(th)in

16                   you're doin, tryin to tell him so[mething eh?]

The second dog story is about the father’s dog Clinger trying to jump onto the bed and missing in the middle of the night. The father is explaining the dog’s reaction to missing the bed. The father describes Clinger as very upset and confused that he missed the bed.  According to the father, the dog thinks the father moved the bed. The son and the father have a lot of laughs about it. Finally the son tells the father that Clinger must think he is messing with him and that is why the bed moved. This excerpt contains the end of the complicating action, which tells what happens, the evaluation, which tells the point of the story, and the resolution, which tells what finally happened (Goodwin, 1990, p. 231).

Line one consists of the son responding “Oh jeez” to the father’s story about the dog running into the bed in the middle of the night.  The “oh” is used as a way to express amazement in this context (W. Beach, personal communication, October 9, 2008).  The son thinks it is amazing that the dog would try to jump onto the bed and hurt himself so bad. The “jeez” in line one is used to evoke the deity.  When jeez is used in conversations it represents times in trouble that cannot be controlled (W. Beach, personal communication, October 9, 2008).  In this case the son is evoking the deity for the dog. The son is expressing he realizes the dog was in a bad situation he could not control, which was miscalculating his jump and hence missing the bed. The son finishes his response by laughing with the father. This shows they both see humor in this.

The father continues his story in line three by explaining he flipped on the light and saw the dog “shaking his head leaking at the bed” in line four. Dogs are not able to shake their heads so the father is clearly humanizing the dog by giving him human like gestures (W. Beach, personal communication, October 9, 2008). The father then explains how Clinger jumped up on the bed again and finally laid down. He finishes in line six by saying “God”. This is another example of evoking the deity for Clinger.  Clinger was obviously in a bad situation because he could not figure out why he could not jump on the bed and the dad expressed Clinger’s troubles by saying “God”.

The son starts line seven by laughing and explaining how he could picture the situation happening. The son humanized Clinger by saying he could think “God damn, who moved this bed” in line eight and nine.  It is impossible to know what the dog was thinking, and it highly unlikely the dog would be thinking human thoughts.  There is another example of evoking the deity when the son says the dog is thinking “God damn” in line eight. This evoking of the deity is for Clinger because he was in the bad position of not being able to jump onto the bed.

The father laughs and continues to humanize Clinger in line eleven by saying that Clinger says, “It was just there five minutes ago how come it moved over”. He humanizes Clinger because he says that Clinger talks when obviously dogs cannot speak English. The son responds with “Ugh” in line thirteen and then the father says “I jumped and it moved” referring to what Clinger was saying still.

Lastly the son tells the father the dog probably thinks that the father is trying to tell him something important in lines fifteen and sixteen. This humanizes the dog one last time by saying the dog thinks human feelings. The son is probably referring to the dog having an idea that there is something wrong with the mother (because she has cancer). In reality, there is no way the dog could have an idea that the mother has an illness. The only thing the dog can tell is different is the mother’s missing presence.