"Monday 5 Things" with D. Paul Graham


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Photo: D. Paul Graham

Monday 5 Things…..Living a Dog’s Life…..

This past Thursday, we had the pleasure of watching a sneak preview of “The Art of Racing in the Rain” with The Oglethorpe Driving Club and some other fellow car lovers. The movie centers around Denny Swift, a talented racer chasing his dream to become an F1 driver. The narrative is conveyed through the warm brown eyes of a dog named Enzo (and the voice of Kevin Costner). I won’t spoil the storyline for you, but uncharacteristically for a Hollywood movie, there is no sex or violence, but come prepared. With some Kleenex. The life events experienced by Denny and Enzo brought sniffles and wet eyes to the most hardened of petrol-heads throughout the theater. Oh, and the racing you ask? Jeff Zwart, one of the world’s greatest auto photographers and filmmakers directed the racing scenes, which are worth the price of admission alone. Enzo’s wit and observations made me realize once again how much I’ve learned from the dogs that have been part of my life. As such, today’s M5T looks at life lessons from our canine friends.

1. Communicate

Find your voice and let people know what you’re thinking. If you want something, ask for it. Bark, sit pretty and use those eyes. If you’re happy, wag your tail. If you’re sad or frightened, tuck it between your legs but always stand firm. Never hold back on kiss. Nuzzle a hand if you want to be petted and encouraged.

2. Play

Be enthusiastic. Always be ready to fetch a ball or chase a squirrel. Run as fast as you can. Bring the toy back to your playmate over and over again. Exercise is important and helps keep the kibble off. When you get tired, take a nap — preferably cuddling with one or more of your pack.

3. Pack

Your pack is everything. Always, always protect your pack. Watch your pack. Listen to your pack. Find ways to bond with your pack. Know their ways, their emotions, their smells, what makes them happy and what makes them sad. Be really, really excited when your pack comes home — even if they stepped outside for a just a few minutes.

4. Believe

Believe in yourself, no matter how big or difficult the task. Never, ever give up on trying to catch the squirrel. This could be the day you catch it. Don’t let fear stop you. Mark your territory. Embrace your personality and idiosyncrasies. They are yours; let them flourish.

5. Live

Live life fully and just be in the moment, every day. Show compassion. Love passionately. Don’t hold grudges and forgive quickly. Make today a new journey. Enjoy the small things. Sniff everything on your walks. Hang your head out of the car window. Dig for treasure. Make treats and meals an adventure every day. Find the light patch, it will warm you. 

Here’s to a week of living a dog’s life.

© 2019 D. Paul Graham, all rights reserved.

D. Paul Graham is passionate about people, culture, photography and business. He has embraced his wanderlust with his travels around the globe and is at peace with his need for spirited drives in all things automotive.

You can find M5T each Monday here on www.southmag.com and by friending D. Paul Graham on Facebook. Paul is also a contributing photographer to South Magazine. His photographic work can be found on Instagram @dpgraham and at www.imageGRAHAM.com. Your feedback is always welcome. Email Paul at dpg@imagegraham.com