January 2012

United

Yes, I am in this photo….there I am in the yellow outfit by the feet.  I am doing what I do when I am listening and being mellow.

This is another photo from my December visit in Boston when I was at the United Way on Sleeper Street. If i were a cat, I would have been so excited about the giant Hood Milk bottle down the street at the Children’s Museum…but, I am a dog and would have preferred, and noticed a giant steak first.   I listened to presentations by some exceptional kids for the United Way Youth Ventures Program.   These were young people with big, and important ideas about how they would like to help their communities and make change.   We heard  them make presentations about their projects to tackle some tough issues like bullying. Here they were,  solving problems, rather than out creating them, or just sitting around.  The United Way brought in people from the community to listen to these projects and decide on how to give them money to support their efforts.  It was sort of like American Idol, except all of the judges were nice, and not like Simon Cowell.  It is so touching to see young people dedicated to community service and giving back. Inspiring.  I am trying to do that too as a service dog and think it is very nice of United Way to help them.

thanks for reading,

Fenway the Dog

P.s. Great tag line: “Live United”…let’s do that.


Showing the Flag

Here is the first of  some of the pictures I have from my visit into the city in December.  I am going to start with this one from the visit to The New England Center for Homeless Veterans in Boston .  You all may recognize me being held by catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia (“Salty”)*.  In the first shot, I was holding him, but that threw off the symmetry: so, we switched.  Next to us is: outfielder Darnell McDonald, pitcher Michael Bowden, catcher and designated hitter Ryan Lavarnway, and of course Wally.  Kevin, thanks for writing to remind me to send these.  Soon to follow are the pics with some of the vets.  This residential program extends a helping hand to homeless men and women veterans who are addressing the challenges of addiction, severe and persistent mental illness and/or unemployment.  As the winter gets colder,  the need for these shelters and their services is critical.  Thank you to the men and women of our armed services for serving our country and helping to make us safe.  It is an honor that some of our  Canine Companions Service dogs are serving you.

Peace, really,

Fenway the Dog

 * Salty wanted to take me home…we were going to form a great catching and fetching duo under the name Salty Dog.

Hats off to Joe


Hi everyone: Because it deserves some extra attention, I just wanted to share a few more photos and thank Joe Bermudez for lending his celebrity musical magic to “Make Noise to save a life”  this past Sunday for Samaritans.  Joe might be an international star…but he is also a guy with a heart bigger than Wally’s hat.  I know this night will live on and continue to have a positive impact- not just because:  it drew so many young & awesome people to the House of Blues on a freezing night , it was one of the Red Sox 100 Acts of Kindness for Fenway Park’s 100th Anniversary, it attracted support of generous sponsors, it raised over $50,000 for Samaritans and  it will help train more volunteers to answer more phones…but because i think this is only the beginning of a lot of Noise to come.  Hats off to everyone who came out, and who continue to speak up.  We hope this will help to save many lives.

thanks for showing up, and thanks for reading,

Fenway the Dog

 

Lou Merloni, Wally & Joe Bermudez in the House for Samaritans


Wally joined Red Sox alum “sweet Lou” Merloni to Make Noise at the House of Blues last night. (actually two nights ago since it is after midnight).  Around a thousand high school and college age kids showed up to hear  remix sensation Joe Bermudez. I wish I could have been there…I could have showed off the moves I have been practicing in my spare time..tail shaking is my thing.  The gathering helped to raise the roof, raise funds…and raise awareness about the serious problem of depression and suicide among young people.  Along with TV, radio and print…it was  a social media extravaganza of Twitter, Facebook, texts…and  some old school e-mail. Maybe we need an app.  I hope you all keep the support going so that we can hit one out of the park this year…thank you Lou for helping Samaritans hit it over the Green Monster, over Lansdowne Street, and through the roof of House of Blues (oops metaphor gone wild).  I will stop before i take it too far. I know, too late.   More pics and stories on the way…

better go…I have to go out and check out the snow…finally it is real winter!

thanks for reading,

Fenway the Dog


Friends

Hello!  I had such a good week recovering at home; I am refreshed and ready to report about the last few exciting days over at Fenway Park. Before i do, i wanted to share with you this photo from my friends Nagal and Vernell.  You remember them from the New Years’, and the Shameless hat Santa pics. Today, Nagal and Vernell ran across these two new friends in their neighborhood- not only did they look like clones- but their names are Verney and Vanguard.  it was very comical when they were having a playful mix up in the driveway… they couldn’t be sorted out when they were called. Sort of like around the Forman house with all of those Georges running around.  This brought about my Big Idea of the Week*…I should gather 100 black labs and make the first Dog Flash Mob at the ballpark to celebrate the 100th Anniversary of Fenway Park.  (Please don’t write and tell me that flash mobs are “so 5 minutes ago” or tell me that so is that expression)

*By the way, since i now officially work for the Red Sox, that means that Larry Lucchino is one on my bosses.  I heard that he has this rule he applies to some people with too many Big Ideas- limit of only one per week.  Well Larry, you are awesome, but that limit thing is in itself a bad idea. So, for now i hope i can come up with lots, and then we can chose the good ones.  Maybe i wont do the flash mob- but it is fun to think of.  Actually this blog was one of my Big Ideas, and the Red Sox and MLB liked it too- that worked out.  So, I hope you will help a pup out and keep reading.  I will work to keep it interesting and promise to report on meaningful things from a fresh perspective.  This is the first time a baseball team has had an Official Service Dog in Training dog/ reporter.

thanks for reading,

Fenway the Dog

 

Shawn Thornton Making Noise

…thought you all would like this photo- it would be a great poster for my sports cave I am planning (in my dreams). I am missing so much excitement this week at Frozen Fenway -both Bobby Orr AND Shawn T!  Thank you Shawn & Bobby for joining the Red Sox in showing your support for Fenway’s 100 Acts of Kindness & Make Noise to save a life  this Sunday @ House of Blues.  I feel like we are brothers now, and i cant wait to hang out with you some day…could  I drink from the Stanley Cup too*? I heard that you all brought it to Maryanne’s by Boston College to thank those fans…I can meet you all anywhere next year when you have it again (oh, and, could you not let them sing that off-color song?- it throws me off my game).

When I am in Boston next, I will come by Samaritans to thank the volunteers  who answer over 125,000 calls a year on the helplines.

thanks for reading

Fenway the Dog

*i got to eat a dog cookie from the World Series Trophy; it was hard to get out and my head almost got stuck.

Making Noise with Bobby Orr

I did not make it over to Fenway last night to skate with the Legend…but we got this pic for you all to see the set up.  Bobby Orr was showing his support for Make Noise -an important event to raise funds for Samaritans.  Samaritans is a suicide awareness and prevention organization which serves a great part of our Red Sox Nation.  Wally will be at House of Blues in my place this Sunday the 15th to greet about a thousand high school and college age supporters….and get some pictures up on the Red Sox website. This event was named as one of the Red Sox 100 Acts of Kindness to celebrate Fenway’s 100 birthday this year.  I want to help spread the kindness by being a dog blogger of the work the Red Sox Foundation does off the field while the players focus on creating the kindness of winning another World Series!  (some multi-layered kindness to fans and community)  oh, here is the website for the event: http://www.makenoisetosavealife.org there are videos and more cohesive information on there.

so, speaking of ice…i think i will be getting some ‘ice time’ this week at home because I got neutered today- yep. All of the Canine Companions for Independence dogs are neutered/spayed if they are working dogs.  Don’t worry, I will be just as macho… and will be able to focus on working and not out cruising around looking for a girlfriend. I think that working and having my big Red Son family will be more than enough.

just a comment about social media…of course i am only a few months old, but all of the places to write and stay in touch are a little overwhelming.  I am going to stick with this blog.  i found out today that i am going to have this blog moved to the Red Sox/MLB blog. I thought that is really nice of them to invite me in to their web home. i will let you know where to find me.  For now, i am here…just chilling and icing.

thanks for reading,

Fenway the Dog

 

Wide Open Spaces

this is a great time to practice my fielding skills…carpe diem on the great weather. it is just cold enough to keep the Frozen in Frozen Fenway.  I haven’t been to see any of the hockey games, but am hoping to be there to take in some ice time. Of course i am partial, but i think it is really nice to have people at Fenway Park in the off season…keeping the connection (one things i am charged with as service dog).  If i graduate and become a companion dog, i will have responsibilities every day of the year…no off season.

i haven’t forgotten about the December recap…i am retrieving (lab humor) my ‘best of’ photos.

thanks for reading

Fenway the Dog

New Year Disresolution

Wow, the holidays really left me dog tired….but I am rested and refreshed and ready for 2012. It is a great deal for a growing dog to take in…but i am ready for the challenge.  (i am so new to this blog stuff that i am going to be more like an ee cummings of capitalization…the paws have trouble with the shift key.)

First of all, i want to say that i think that New Year’s resolutions are  lame.   But,  i think that i need to make some New Year’s Promises at least, because the Red Sox have bestowed me with the honor of being the official service dog.  Here’s a start: I will vow to step up to the plate (and use more baseball metaphors but not acknowledge them) and make sure that I help to spread the word of the magic of collaboration between a sports team and a young service dog.  Of course I am charged with illustrating the symbolism of a dog’s convening power,  door opening, and overall diplomacy through personal contact and social media…. wait, what?  Maybe it is better for me to just write about my experiences and let you all sort it out organically.

Second, i will be reporting more frequently because i will be linked to Red Sox websites.  I will try to use shorter, easier to follow sentences…dogs often get distracted.  if you want to read people prose you can try another site.

Here is what you can look forward to, or avoid reading  about over the next week as i give you a retrospective of my December activities in Boston.  These include: reading the Grinch Who Stole Christmas to some great kids for ReadBoston event with Mayor Menino (i sat, he read); a trip on a bus with some Red Sox players where we visited Boston Medical Center, Mass General Children’s Hospital, and had lunch with veterans.  More to come.

thanks for reading,

Fenway the Dog

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