When Shakespeare wrote, “the eyes are the window to your soul,” I can only assume he had a black lab sitting next to him.
Up until last year for about four years, LOOMIS had the good fortune of having in residence what I can only describe as the best dog I’ve ever known. His name was Tex. A big, black lab with soulful brown eyes, a black tongue and a loving personality that made you instantly understand why dogs are considered man’s best friend.He belonged to Elizabeth Deighton, one of our account executives and came to the office with her 3-4 times a week. That wasn’t enough for most of us.
As “the voice of the underdog,” we encourage people to bring their dogs to the office as often they’d like. On any given day, there might be 5-6 dogs running around, but Tex was different than most. In fact, if LOOMIS had a Mount Rushmore for our dogs, there would only be two represented – Duke, Cecily Worthy’s little Yorkie who passed away this summer and Tex. He’s the only dog I’ve ever known that clients specifically requested be present for their meetings. He had that kind of effect on people.
I suppose for some, an 80-pound black Lab could be intimidating, but Tex was anything but. He was sweet and gentle with eyes that revealed the unconditional love he had for those around him.
Many an afternoon, I found myself anxious and amped up over an impending deadline, or an inconvenient case of writer’s block. That was usually about the time Tex would wander into my office and put his head in my lap for a quick pat. He’d just sit and watch me work for a few minutes. I’d scratch his head and rub the scruff around his neck and when it finally seemed like my stress was gone, he’d stand up and go back to Elizabeth’s desk. Tex was the real Dog Whisperer.
Other than scarfing an occasional piece of pizza out of the unattended kitchen, Tex was the model employee. He was ever-present, lying on the cool tile in the hallway, or greeting clients and the FedEx guy at the front door with a vigorous wag of his tail. When Elizabeth took a new job last year, she joked that we’d miss Tex as much as we’d miss her, but we all knew she wasn’t really joking.
This weekend, Tex died after a weekend hunting trip with Elizabeth’s fiancée William and ironically, Cecily’s husband Chris. The news of his passing sent a hush throughout the agency this morning, even among the half of our staff who never even met him. Like I said, Tex had that kind of effect on people. He died the way he lived. Bigger than life, filling all those around him with a feeling of warmth and love. Like Duke, we will miss Tex terribly. But we were all lucky to know him. As Alfred Lord Tennyson once said, “Tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.”
Apparently, Tennyson had a black lab too.