Tag Archives: positive attitude

My Top Five Favorite Summer 2015 Events

26 Sep
Ma! MA! Can you turn the AC up, please? It’s “gettin’ hot in hrrrre”…BOL!

Ma! MA! Can you turn the AC up, please? It’s “gettin’ hot in hrrrre”…BOL!

This post originally appeared as a Tupper’s Tidbits column in the September 23, 2015, issue of The Archway, Bryant’s student newspaper.

I’m not going to lie – summer is, like, the WORST time of year for me. I know, I know: You humans LOVE summer. Hot weather, beer, pools, vacations – all the staples of well-enjoyed human summer.

But put yourselves in my paws for a few minutes. Hot weather can kill me in 5-10 minutes because of my smushed-in face. We dogs cool off by panting, but if we have no snouts, we have less ability to cool off. We sweat through the pads of our feet…which are on pavement…which boasts temperatures upwards of 125°F in the summer. Beer? Ma won’t share. Something about it being toxic for dogs. That’s what she SAYS, anyway.

THIS is how I feel about pools.

THIS is how I feel about pools.

Pools? Fuhgeddaboudit! Bulldogs sink like stones. We can’t swim. Too much – ahem – MUSCLE densely packed. Most of us. Some bulldogs can. I don’t like water at all though. Won’t even go in the kiddie pool Ma got for me. Vacation? Try again. Ma says she can afford bulldogs or she can afford vacations, but she can’t afford both. So we stay home. That’s even worse for me!

Anyway, even though summer isn’t my favorite season, I enjoyed a few things this year. I present to you “Tupper’s Top Five Favorite Summer 2015 Events”:

  1. DAD HAD SURGERY. Now I know what you’re thinking: Tup, that’s terrible! But hear me out…he needed those new knees…and I got to spend a few weeks with the Momma because she was lonely. AND THEN SHE TOOK ME TO WORK EVERY DAY! So much fun.
  1. BOXES. A lot of stuff gets delivered to Academic Records in the summer and that means I get to shred the boxes they came in…I HAVE CONQUERED CARDBOARD!
  1. CAMPUS CONSTRUCTION. Yeah, sure, we had to take a lot of detours to get to the office, but more construction equals more construction workers equals more people to pet me because I’m so awesome.
  1. HOME MAINTENANCE. Ma had a few things done around the house. Of course, they all fell in love with me. And asked for me so they could pet me. Ma’s favorite was when the pellet stove cleaner came and ran his industrial vacuum for two straight hours…and I angrily barked at it for the full two hours. Fun!

And my number one favorite event this summer was:

  1. PHYSICIAN ASSISTANT PROGRAM STUDENTS. Folks, this master’s degree program is challenging. They needed me all summer for pet therapy. Which I gladly provided. I’ve never felt so loved over the summer! So glad Bryant started this PA program!

 

So there you have it. Tupper’s Top Five Favorite Summer 2015 Events. Don’t forget – I’m on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Vine. Get at me! I’ll see you soon. ’Til next time…WOOF!

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BaconQuest

24 Dec

If you follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or Vine, you already know I am ALWAYS on the hunt for bacon. I call it my personal BaconQuest.

Sometimes, such as the day before a major holiday, the bacon seeks ME out!

Here’s how it breaks down:

1) Ma wakes me up from my restful slumber

Oh, hey...here to rub my belly, Ma?

Oh, hey…here to rub my belly, Ma?

2) I sense a pork-product disturbance in the atmosphere

Pork-product Disturbance

Holy mother of Porky! What do I smell?

3) My sniffer’s working overtime

Just a tiny edge of this treat is visible!

Just a tiny edge of this treat is visible!

4) I’m actually moving…into “treat-receiving” position

Licking chops

OMNOMNOM! GIMME, GIMME, GIMME!

5) Being told I have to wait…WAIT?? Do you know who I am??

What? Stay still? IMPOSSIBLE!

What? Stay still? IMPOSSIBLE!

6) Making a grab for it

Faster than a speeding bullet when bacon is involved!

Faster than a speeding bullet when bacon is involved!

7) SUCCESS! BaconQuest fulfilled for today. I shall start my quest shortly for tomorrow…

YES! The most flavorful treat around!

YES! The most flavorful treat around!

Tupper’s Tidbits – Top Five Things to Do Over Winter Break

7 Dec

This piece originally ran in the December 7 issue of The Archway.

You can see the light at the end of the tunnel…at this point, you’re hoping it’s not a train coming at you, but the semester’s almost over! You’re going to go from 100 mph to 0 in about 5 seconds. Do you have any idea what that can do to a person (or dog)?

Winter break is awesome because it’s a loooong holiday vacation for you. You’ll see family and friends, and sleep in your own bed again. You’ll see your pets that you’ve missed, and eat mom’s and grandma’s home cooking. And then, 10 days later, you’ll be wishing you were back at Bryant. Trust me, I know these things…I’m a mascot!

Trust me, I'm a mascot.

Trust me, I’m a mascot.

But you’re going to have five or six whole weeks off! What will you do? I can tell you from my personal knowledge bank that there are things you can do to make your time off even better. “Better,” you say, “how so?” I present to you: Tupper’s Top Five Things to Do Over Winter Break:

Stop staring at me!

Stop staring at me!

5. TAKE NAPS! Did you know that young humans such as yourselves need about 9 hours of sleep each night (www.sleepfoundation.org)? Get on that! You’ve got so much work that you stay up all night and walk around like Monster-swilling zombies! Get your sleep…that’s an order! I know I’m no good unless I get my 22 hours each day! 🙂

4. VISIT YOUR DOGTOR! Health Services does a great job, but they don’t know YOU. Not like your regular dogtor does! My dogtor knows when the slightest thing is off about me. Visit your physician, say “hi,” and have him/her do a wellness check.

3. CHEW A BONE! When I get bored, I get into trouble. My chew toys are what my Momma calls “productive activity” because they help my dental and mental health. You need to make sure that you’re doing something productive during break; otherwise, re-entry in January is going to kill you! Especially you first-years who will be doing the 72-hour Bryant IDEA Program as part of the Gateway Experience…it’ll be so helpful, but each day will wipe you out – stay in practice!

2. HAVE PLAYDATES!  It is awesome to be by yourself sometimes to recharge your batteries, but make sure you’re also connecting with humans – IN PERSON! Socialization is important. It teaches you to be more independent and will make you happier and more satisfied with your life.

And the number one thing you must do over winter break is:

1. STAY IN TOUCH WITH ME! I’m going to be lonely… 😦 Check in with me on my social media accounts. Post pictures of your trips, adventures, and family members! I’ll be thinking about you when you’re gone. Spare a thought to your favorite mascot?

I will just chomp on my WJMF Frisbee until you get back.

I will just chomp on my WJMF Frisbee until you get back.

So there you have it. Tupper’s Top Five Things to Do Over Winter Break. Don’t forget – I’m on Facebook and Twitter. Get at me! ’Til next time…WOOF!

You’re all human to me

7 Mar

Somebody called me “fat” again today.

*Sigh* Sometimes, it feels like nobody understands me!

Once again, I was judged, and found to be lacking – or, in this case, too plentiful.

Sometimes, instead of just calling me fat, people will ask Momma if I’m overweight. And at least 25 percent of those don’t believe her when she says that I’m well within my healthy weight range. You can’t really say a healthy bulldog should weigh 50 pounds in the same way you can’t say a healthy human should weigh 150 pounds. A whole lotta things factor in – height, build, etc.

Here’s what some people don’t know: According to the Bulldog Club of America, bulldogs are bred to have a “massive, short-faced head,” a “heavy, thick-set, low-swung body,” a “very short” face and muzzle and a “massive” and “undershot” jaw.

Sound like anyone you know?

In the end, we don't really know why anybody does anything unless we ask them...

But I don’t get insulted when you call me names…especially as long as you’re scratching me! Maybe my Momma does, because she does so much to take care of me – I’m allergic to wheat, soy, barley, alfalfa, kelp, salmon, and peas, among other things. And those are just my food allergies! So the Mommas home cook my food for me. And they wash my face, paws, and tail every day. Allergies are a common affliction among bulldogs.

You think I’m lazy?

Momma carries me up and down stairs a lot. That’s because as a bulldog is growing, we can easily damage our joints and tendons because of the dense weight we put on our limbs. She probably doesn’t need to carry me anymore cuz I’m two, but she likes the workout!

She also recently found out that my paws were so inflamed because of my allergies that it’s painful for me to walk on them. So now I get Epsom salt foot soaks…just like Madge gives in the old Palmolive commercials!

You may have noticed that sometimes, I get pushed around in a stroller. Well, I’m not an exercise enthusiast, for the above reasons. Also I can overheat quite easily. Anything warmer than 60 degrees is really too warm for me to be engaging in any exercise at all.

I'm still so fly that I get all the girls!

I don’t expect you to know all this stuff, unless you have or have had bulldogs. That’s why I’m telling you… “engaging in dialogue,” and “actively seeking understanding across lines of difference” are part of pluralism, which is one step beyond diversity.

My “a-ha” moment was when I saw that Bryant is sponsoring the Sixth Annual “What is Pluralism?” Contest. That’s when I realized, “hmm…how would anyone KNOW why I do what I do unless I discuss it with them?” It’s so much better when we all participate and share our views, thoughts, and actions.

I encourage you to enter the contest if you are a member of the Bryant community. Don’t wait, do it now. All you have to do now is fill out a sheet of paper – they extended the deadline. If you can’t enter, you should still go to the contest on March 28 and see the entries. You will be moved.

The face of determination

7 Jun

On Saturday, June 4, I went to a Bryant alum’s birthday party. It was a special party for two reasons: First, because the birthday ‘boy’ turned 30, a milestone by any standards; and second, because doctors told his parents that he would never see age 30.

Matthew DiIorio ’04 (Johnston, RI) has Friedreich’s ataxia. It’s a rare, progressive disease that causes irreparable damage to the spinal cord, loss of muscle coordination, and, often, heart problems. But it doesn’t affect thinking and reasoning abilities. At present, there is no cure or treatment for the disorder.


I don’t know what I was expecting when I got there, but what I found was a house filled with loving friends and relatives who were celebrating a joyous occasion.

I knew there was something very special about the man in the wheelchair, so I kept trying to jump on him. Mommy Tina moved a chair next to him and placed me in it, where I stayed for a very long time (by my standards). A couple of times, I stepped over the side of the wheelchair to stand in Matthew’s lap.

Me & Matt
Mommy Tina kept moving me off Matt’s lap because she said she didn’t want me to hurt him. She didn’t know that Matt and I had already bonded.

Although Matt’s speech is slurred due to the Friedreich’s ataxia, he was pretty clear when he told Mommy T, “no, he’s not hurting me, he can stay.”

Me & Matt 3
Thank you, Professor David Ciliberto (who was one of Matt’s favorite teachers at Bryant), for thinking to include me. Thank you, Jack and Sallyann DiIorio, for welcoming me into your home and being so very happy I could come. And, finally, thank you, Matt, for showing everyone what it means to have determination, perseverance, and positivity in the face of adversity.

Me & Matt 4
If you would like to help find a cure for Friedreich’s ataxia, visit the Friedreich’s Ataxia Research Alliance ‘ways to help’ page.