Dog Days of Spring Break

By Patti Parish-Kaminski, Publisher

A must during the Dog Days of Spring Break: “Oh, I’d love to be an Oscar Mayer wiener…”

Life is just full of surprises – right?  Of course, the word “boring” has never been used to describe me or the life I’ve been blessed to live.  The concept is just not in my wheelhouse.  I tend to liken myself to picante sauce: a bit chunky with a little heat – and that’s anything but boring.

Spring Break this year didn’t boast any grand adventure.  We didn’t leave the country; we didn’t explore parts unknown.  We didn’t have a packed itinerary of off-the-chart activities.  It was a low key, enjoyable time complete with a visit to the Hill Country with Dee Dee in tow and then Westward bound to snowy Colorado to hole up, rest and catch up on some projects.  Heck, I barely packed, which is saying a lot, and I didn’t shop for new outfits at all.  Now that I reflect on the situation, clearly that was a missed opportunity.

So, who knew that on a recent jaunt to Durango, Colorado to deliver Dee Dee to the airport with dear Christine in tow, I’d be face to face with an American icon – one we all grew up with?  But I was, and it was the Oscar Mayer Wiener vehicle.

Now don’t act like y’all don’t know what I’m talking about, and I know good and darn well you know the song.  “Oh, I’d love to be an Oscar Mayer wiener. That is what I’d truly like to be. ‘Cause if I were an Oscar Mayer wiener, everyone would be in love with me!”

I am a dog girl.  I will eat a good dog every time, much to the chagrin of Mr. Kaminski who has no tolerance for the all-American delectable delight. The iconic hot dog hotrod was right there on Main Street – complete with Cali license plates.  Go figure.

Now the proper name for this traveling treat is the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile, and it actually has a schedule of personal appearances.  It’s a big deal, or rather, a big dog.  It is manned by “hotdoggers,” the official spokespeople of the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile established in 1988 who travel throughout the United States all year long “spreading miles of smiles.”  I get that.  It made me smile.

Of course, we were driving by when I spotted the wacky wiener, and I immediately told Mr. Kaminski I was getting out.  Fortunately, he did slow down.  Needing a partner in crime, I made Christine hop out as well.

Other dog divas were around taking photos, and I certainly did not want to be left out.  Christine actually stood in the middle of Main Street – traffic and all – to capture the monumental moment – me with the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile.  It’s a family album keeper.

We didn’t meet any of the “hotdoggers,” but I’ve done a deep dive into this opportunity, and clearly, I’m qualified.  It’s actually a pretty good gig.  It’s for one year, and the qualifications include:

  • Experience being your own traveling public relations firm.
  • Experience in a self-managed position with many responsibilities.
  • Be a mini-celebrity in small towns and big cities through event appearances
  • Excellent communication and interpersonal skills
  • Outgoing, friendly, passionate and enthusiastic personality

Check, check and check!  Sign me up!  The only downside is the official uniform is a bit more Tennessee orange, which is not in my color wheel, rather than UT orange.  Which totally doesn’t make sense as hot dogs are clearly more burnt orange.  But I believe with my skills of persuasion, I can remedy that.  See y’all next week – on the porch!

Patti Parish-Kaminski

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