Me and My Babies (Yep! Call me CRAZY)
|This album is dedicated to the loves of my life, my Staffordshire Bull Terriers, aka VICIOUS PT BULLS, Ramone, GoGo & Marley.First, let me begin by declaring…I’M IN LOVE WITH MY BABIES!
I got Ramone and Marley when they were tiny, 8-week-old pups. At age 18 months, I had to board them for a few days while moving. The boarding facility let them escape. I rushed out to where they went missing, Wildomar, and spent the night looking for them. The next day, I discovered Marley’s crushed body; he had been run over by a car. Admittedly, I went a little nuts, and spent the next 2 months living in the back seat of my car, on the dirt road where Marley had been killed. All I did, day and night, was look for Ramone. After 2 months, I partially came to my senses and moved back indoors, but continued to do everything possible to find a lost dog (read: family member). We did so much, we even attracted the attention of Discovery Channel and “Pitbulls & Parolees,” who did a whole segment on “Find Ramone,” which included their sending their staff to Wildomar for a day to help me look for my boy. After 6 months missing, Ramone came home to me. With losing Marley being the worst day of my life, finding Ramone was the BEST. He came back to me a little skinny, a little tired, a little scratched up, but in almost no time, he was back to his old happy self. Ramone has simultaneously the sweetest and most mischievous personality. To me, he has –and always will– personify love and joy.
A year and a half later, Ramone and I were introduced to GoGo, by my friend Linda Blair, who runs the amazing WorldHeart Organization. GoGo had been in a pen at Linda’s rescue for going on 3 years. A super sweet girl, she just hadn’t found her match there. Ramone and I bonded with GoGo right away, and vice-versa. Meeting here, you just KNOW immediately, that she has a boundless heart and soul. We adopted her and brought her home to Big Bear shortly after Christmas of 2011. In getting to know her, she opened my eyes –and my heart– to the depth to which an animal can love, and receive love. The 3 of us spent a relatively solitary year and one-half in Big Bear, hiking, playing, training and more-than-anything, bonding.
From a move to the city in Los Angeles and then to the beaches of San Clemente, we’ve been nearly inseparable. I like to think that the three of us share a spirit that, no matter what life brings, will always remain unbroken. For my part, I just hope that I am giving them the life of happiness and health that they deserve.
Did I mention?… I LOVE MY BABIES! 🙂
This is the introduction to GoGo’s “My Life” album on hers and Ramone’s Facebook page. (Yep, you read that right, they have their own Facebook page. Like ‘em HERE)!
Hi. My name is GoGo David Bassman. Yes, I know that David is a funny middle name for a girl. But, I am a good girl. Everyone says so. I am the sister of “Hercules,” the cool boy you see on “Pit Boss,” with my pal Shorti. Shorti and Hercules were a little busy, so when I was just 1, they put me with Linda Blair at her Worldheart Foundation. (Linda’s so nutty sometimes, she could make my head spin! But…I LOVE HER). Because I am such a good girl, everyone thought I’d find a forever home right away! But, I spent 3 years at Linda’s. She took good care of me but I became shy and reserved. Then , I met Daddy Rick and Brother Ramone. We all liked each other right away, and I went home with them. Now, we all love each other. My smile and my personality are getting bigger every day. –by GoGo David Bassman
Brother and sister and BEST PALS!
And this is an excerpt from “Little Big Man:”
(if you don’t currently have a dog, or have never had a dog, than you may as well just stop reading right here. ‘Cause if you don’t already think I’m a sick puppy, you will think I’m a very sick puppy after reading this. Pun intended).
It’s Just Part of Life: My Love Letter to Ramone, by Rick Bassman
My life with Ramone, just the 5 short and yet oh-so-long years –many lifetimes it seems– that I’ve had him (minus of course, that the 6 months he was missing) encapsulate ALL that I AM, EVERYTHING I’ve ever felt, cared about in life, and aspire to be. Here come s the cop-out of all cop-outs. There is no way, in a million, billion, trillion years, that I have the ability, the skill, the eloquence, to hack out on a keyboard how and what I feel about MY BOY. So, I’ll just do my best, k? I saved Ramone and he saved me right back. Spiritual teacher. Protégé. Confidante. He is all that and more to me. As I hope I am to him. As I am sure that I am when he looks into my eyes.
If any part of Been There, Done That ends up exposing my shortcomings as a writer, this is it. Where ya just can’t find the words…where you just have to go extemporaneous…give in to stream-of-consciousness. To tell you what’s on my heart.
I write about love a lot and think of it even more. I’ve yet to find the words to truly convey what love means to me, how it feels, and I probably never will. If I could, then I’d be able to put down , here and now, the totally complete, all encompassing, feelings I have for Ramone. Yes, I love him. He is my baby, my boy, my best pal. My side-kick, my wingman, by brother-in-arms. HE is my SOUL MATE.
As I sit home alone – again – writing, sipping a scotch on the rocks, I turn and look over my right shoulder where my boy is sleeping on the couch. And I’m overwhelmed. He is curled up in his leopard skin blanket, his tongue sticking out of his snout, which oh-so-perfectly complements the image of the vicious pit bull. I’m kidding, obviously; actually, he looks like a total dork. And I love it. He’s snoring softly, which I will hear again –and love even more – when he clambers up onto my bed in the middle of the thud, plops down with a thud, and smashes his head up against mine. Which means his nose practically ends up in my ear. LOVE IT.
As I’ve written elsewhere in these memoirs, at one and one half years old, Ramone was missing for 6 months. In the pieces I’ve been able to put together since, he spent that time on the streets. He came back to me skinny, his face dinged up, exhausted. I imagine what it must have been like for my baby. HATE IT.
Through Ramone, I experience the highest of highs and the lowest of lows. If I’ve left him alone for an hour, when I come up, he is laying on his belly on the sofa, ears pinned back, eyes saucer-wide. Looking like he’s done something really bad. To deserve to be left home alone. I think that he must have been thinking “I’ve been abandoned, left alone, again.” It truly breaks my heart and NOTHING MAKES ME SADDER.
When we are driving together, each time we pull into the driveway at home, Ramone goes absolutely nuts with joy. Jumping up and down, smiling/”laughing”/licking my face. I think that he must be thinking “I have a home. I have a home!” When I experience this, my heart soars and NOTHING MAKES ME HAPPIER.
The worst experience, the most gut-wrenching, I’ve had over the past two years, is the time Ramone was attacked by a much larger dog, who had locked its killer jaws onto the side of his head. In the time between the initial attack, where I leap in without fear or thought of consequence, to the time he’s been freed, time stops and my own life flashes before my eyes.
Outside of that, there are nothing but good, happy, ecstatic experiences:
—Ramone sleeping on my lap, content and exhausted, on a long road trip up the Highway 101.
—Besides himself with joy as he tears across the sand and plunges into the water’s edge.
—Ramone making out with drunk, pretty girls at bars and at concerts. They are ALL pretty to Ramone. (yes, really. On the making out with girls” thing, and on the concerts. Ramone has seen Rod Stewart, Ziggy Marley, Motley Crue and a bunch of others I can’t think of right now).
—Ramone “starring” in the sizzle reel we shot for my pitbull rescue show, “Bullys’ Angels.” And stealing every scene he’s in.
—Ramone eating a nutritious, well-balanced diet. Every day. I don’t.
—I love that Ramone has health insurance. And I don’t. wouldn’t trade that for nothin’
—taking Ramone shopping at Trader Joe’s, where everyone knows his name
—writing this book, now night after night, with Ramone at my side. He is my co-author.
Pretty much all of the love I have in my heart, my mind, my life is directed toward Ramone. At rare times, like when he and I are at the beach, and we see a big loving family…fathers, sons, daughters, wives, parents…I marvel at how pathetic that is. And most of the time, it’s just okay.
For the love of Pit Bulls and the Bully Breeds everywhere, please make a donation to the Linda Blair World Heart Foundation: http://www.lindablairworldheart.org/how-can-i-help/donate/