No, Teddy’s not preening. He’s wearing my t-shirt so he doesn’t mess with the stitches on his gonads. One of the good parts of having a male dog neutered is that one gets to use the word “gonads,” truly one of the best words in English.

In cinema, the best gonad scene I can recall is in Little Big Man when General Custer is preening in his tent and has called in Dustin Hoffman’s character, Jack Crabb (who was raised by the Cheyenne), to explain his job with Custer’s army. In that conversation Custer dubs Jack “Muleskinner,” and says that he knows Jack Crabb is totally untrustworthy. He explains that he going to use Jack as a “reverse scout,” and will do the opposite of everything he advises. In their conversation Custer explains how hours in the saddle cause “the juices” to rise unhealthily in the gonads.

Sadly, this isn’t anywhere on Youtube or I’d share it for our mutual amusement. Later in the film, they are on the battlefield, surrounded by “savages.” Custer asks Jack what he should do…

And since there are people who read this blog who live in other countries, or parts of the United States where they might not have been raised on debates about the Battle of the Little Bighorn, here’s what it’s all about. Because my family (mom, aunts) had grown up within a few miles of the battlefield, Custer’s mistakes were a normal topic of conversation at family gatherings. As it happens, my grandfather was six years old when the battle took place.

The battlefield is a National Monument. Originally it was called Custer Battlefield, but more enlightened times changed the name to Little Bighorn Battlefield. It is known by locals as “Buster’s Cattlefield” for good reason. Cattle graze there. The most famous artifact in the family — which I possess — is an arrowhead of Montana moss agate found by my Aunt Martha and grandfather on a stroll through the cattle field.

14 thoughts on “Cojones

  1. thanks for showing this, it’s been a long time since I saw it. and yes, gonads is a way underused word.

  2. Teddy Kennedy…well that’s certainly an interesting name for a fella. I hope Mr. Kennedy feels better real soon. My vet used a crushing technique (which still makes ME wince and I don’t have any gonads) on Ziggy. Ziggy still looks bewildered and also looks ‘intact’ although, apparently, those don’t work any more. Someone did the same to Pudge at some point, because the pound thought he was still un-neutered, but no. He has no cojones…Poor fellas. The girls suffer worse though IMHO. I’m glad you neutered your Teddy, that’s the responsible thing to do, although I doubt they appreciate it. 🙂

    • Teddy Kennedy didn’t occur to me immediately since his name is Teddy Bear T. Dog to go with Polar Bear Yeti T. Dog but when I realized it I cracked up. He’s doing fine. His best friend, Bear, is taking good care of him. I was afraid they’d play wildly as usual but Bear seems to get that Teddy has to be a little quiet for a while. I have never heard of this “crushing.” I see the advantage, though it sounds pretty sinister. 🙂

  3. I saw the film many years ago, It was a good one. As for the gonads, we have another word in cockney english and Mr. Swiss growing up in a butcher’s family (his dad) knows all about them. They used to let the butcher’s apprentices have them as a treat from the bulls (yuck), cooked of course. Poor Teddy, hope he has recovered and that he forgives you.

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