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FORMER FSU LINEBACKER KNOWS STUDS AND BITCHES

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The Wizard of Odds consistently unearths the oddball story, which may be nice during the hectic season but becomes positively vital in the doldrums of the offseason. He comes through again with the story of Keith Carter, former Florida State linebacker-turned-dog show magnate, whose prize Rottweiler Shaka Zulu performed well at the Westminster Dog Show in New York this week.

Carter gets points for making it to the big show, but lands squarely in the rubric of race/dog matchups by breeding Rottweilers, which big black guys seem to like because they're also big and black. (We're guessing they overlook the endemic hip dysplasia and heart problems in the simile there, just as we'll overlook the racial/canine parallels between Irish Wolfhounds and average, Mick-looking types such as ourselves; namely, that they amble around pleasantly for a few short years 'till their hearts explode one day. No, no parallels there...)

This all reminds us to be courteous and keep our choices in dog breeding and choice racially predictable.

Single white guy, straight: something smelly, lazy, gluttonous, cantankerous, boisterous, and potentially unmanageable. Ugly helps, as does possession of powerful glands and marking behaviors. Breed: Boxer, Bulldog, Basset Hound, Bloodhound, or any other breed with custom disfigurement and tendency towards eye-watering flatulence. Do NOT neuter, as this will inhibit their tendency to piss on things.

Flatulent. Amiable. Prone to weight gain and long losing streaks to Florida.

Single white guy, gay: Really the same as single white guy, just well-groomed, well-managed, and NOT fed Ol' Roy dog food straight from the local Wal-Mart.

Does not sleep in your bed; instead, dozes comfortably on $110 Crate and Barrel dog pillow set at the foot of the bed and begs for organic dog biscuits baked fresh at the pet bakery down the street. Wears collar that reads "MY DAD IS SINGLE."

Single black guy, straight: Threat is the operant term here, with breed choices limited to dogs capable of chewing through chain link like Twizzlers. Should, on sight, instantly scream "Nature's Do Not Touch Sign." The breed should ideally be feared not only by neighbors, but by special forces elites from the Green Berets to the Spetsnaz, and the growl should send intruders bowels into fluttering, pants-soiling spasm. "Plays" with children, with "play" meaning "rips limbs off in single motion while laughing cold, heartless dog laughter." Ideal choices include Presa Canario, Rottweiler, Pit Bull, American Staffordshire Terrier, Fila Brasiliero, and Tibetan Mastiff, aka "The Lhasa Car Alarm." Unless unavoidable, always purchase in black and oufit with metal choke chain or studded collar.

That's about right.

Single black guy, gay: from observation, may purchase or adopt any dog on the planet at any time for any reason. We base this on our observations from Piedmont Park in Atlanta, where we...umm...take walks in the evening and look at gay men and their dogs. Wait, that didn't come out right...who said anything about coming out? Next!

Married guy, all races: Neutered Labrador Retriever. This actually pops up on any wedding registry by default when a new account is opened, so don't try to fight it. You'll wake up one day and find your favorite pair of pants destroyed, or a fresh steaming pile of dog shit in the geometric center of your living room, or perhaps an entire wall of a toolshed devoured and slowly grinding its way through your dog's innards, and wonder: when did I get a Labrador Retriever? When you got married, of course. They come with the package, and you're powerless to fight it or the fact that it will be named something you once considered as a viable name for your potential offspring. Will be the worst dog you ever have, but will serve as an invaluable asset in your marriage by giving you and your spouse something every successful marriage needs: a common enemy.

Here's your new dog, sir. Welcome...to hell.