In the early days
of the world, according to the Penobscot Indians, a great warrior named Long
Hair asked the animals if one of them would be willing to live with mankind.
All except the dog hurried away. In gratitude, Long Hair arranged it so that
ever afterward all animals should run whenever dogs barked.
Some Indian tribes
of the Pacific Northwest believed men and dogs were closely related. They
thought that dogs originally had been intended to be people, but were so quick
and so smart that another great warrior named Raven ; took them by the neck and
pushed them down. "Have four legs," said Raven curtly, and thus dogs
became dogs. The myth of a California tribe relates that when the creator was
at work creating the world, he took his dog with him. Nothing was ever said
about him having created the dog. He already had one.
In God Had a Dog
( Rutgers University Press, $9), Maria Leach notes that in the folklore of
primitive peoples there are some 76 such gods who are accompanied by their
dogs, but almost no tales about how the dogs were created. This 544 page
miscellany of dog lore touches on such matters as the dog star, the dog days
and dogs during eclipses (they were whipped in all tribes so their howls would
prevent the sun from destroying the moon), and the legends range from ancient
Egypt to Carbondale, Illinois.
In Carbondale in
1948 a man had a coon dog so smart that when he showed the dog a board the size
he wanted to stretch a coonskin on, the dog would dash into the woods and come
back with the right size coon. One day the man's wife set an ironing board out
in the backyard and the dog was gone for two years. The same story is told in
Mississippi and New Mexico, where it is said the dog never did come back.
CULT OF CORN
newspaper Sovsports has just reprinted from SPORTS ILLUSTRATED (Nov. 27, 1961)
that memorable picture of Pete Dawkins, the former West Point All-America
footballer now at Oxford, engaged in throttling a Rugby opponent. As we
explained at the time, Pete Jost his hitherto well-controlled temper in the
heat of a rough game, and no one, least of all the British, seemed to resent
it. Rather, they seemed amused by it and explained it by saying that Dawkins,
having proved himself a fine Rugger player, was now proving himself a human
Sovsports did not
take this view. Under the headline, SMART GUY DAWKINS LOST HIS TEMPER, it
"It is not
difficult to understand the enthusiasm of SPORTS ILLUSTRATED'S editors for this
picture because Dawkins is acting exactly in the spirit with which they are
trying to inculcate American youth by extolling the cult of force."
BROWN ON BROWN