Perfectly precious poodles on parade

Last Saturday, in Carmel, California, was poodle day, starting with a poodle parade in the morning, moving to the beach in the afternoon for a poodle swim, and ending in the evening with poodle-friendly cocktails.

“The sublime and the ridiculous are often so nearly related, that it is difficult to class them separately,” said Thomas Paine, one of our country’s revolutionary founders. “One step above the sublime makes the ridiculous, and one step above the ridiculous makes the sublime again.”

He would not have been able to turn away from this poofy spectacle, with poodles dyed pink, turquoise, purple and polka dot, dressed as French floozies, Western sheriffs, and supermen, and with owners whose aviator glasses reflected the blue of the California sky.

Although the French, the undisputed leaders of fashion, have adopted the poodle as their national dog, it really comes from Germany. Its name comes from the German word puddeln, which means to splash in water, and the poodle was bred to retrieve in water.

It was in Germany, where he was stationed, that Elvis, The King, fell in love with poodles, owning one named Champagne. He gave one named “Little Bit” to a girlfriend, one named “Honey” to his wife, Priscilla, and two to his mother, one named “Sweet Pea” and one named “Duke” after John Wayne.

They should all have moved to the sun and fun in Carmel, where the poodle is honored, as it should be, in all its sublime ridiculousness.

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