JACKIE ON JACKIE BLOG
PRETTY IS AS PRETTY DOES
July 31st, 2014 by Tina Santi Flaherty
Hello Dear Readers!
It’s Jackie Santi Flaherty (JSF)— white Labrador & fur-person extraordinaire, back at my dog-blog. Today I have some more interesting tidbits about, Jackie Kennedy Onassis (JKO), my namesake, to share with you.
In the meantime, my little fur-sister, Scarlett, a ruby King Charles Spaniel, is trying to stare me down as I sit at the computer. She just wishes her little furry paws would reach my keyboard so she could do a blog too! Well — she is barking up the wrong tree!!! I told her she CAN’T because her name isn’t Jackie! Fiddle de dee to you, too, Scarlett. This is NOT TARA!
Now I want to talk about Jackie O’s take on manners — that’s what fancy folks call etiquette. Doing the right thing at the right time was important to Jackie O. It’s the same with my Pet-Mom who repeatedly tells me and my fur-sister, Scarlett, NOT to do stuff that ANY decent fur-person with any breeding would EVER do—like jumping up on a visitor, slobbering on their face, or having a pee-pee accident on someone’s prized antique Moroccan rug! More about that later…
JACKIE’S GOOD MANNERS
One of the reasons my Pet-Mom is so cuckoo for Jackie Kennedy is that she thinks JKO was the epitome of good manners, poise and class! Jackie’s Mom –Janet Lee Bouvier Auchincloss– taught Jackie and her sister, Lee, that a “Thank You” note has to be written within the first 24 hours in order to pack a punch, otherwise it loses its impact. Oh? Really? Let’s find out why!
Jackie O never forgot this lesson and would faithfully wrote her thank you’s on distinctive note-paper the color of dark blue hyacinth with a tiny white sea shell embossed at the top. (Jackie O loved the sea by the way!) No matter how late the hour, JKO composed a thoughtful note of appreciation so that she could mail it the next day.
In my Pet-Mom’s book, What Jackie Taught Us, she mentions something quite intriguing about Jackie O’s twenty four-hour thank you notes: “These beautifully written missives were warm, charming, and personal, never stiff or dutiful, and one of the few avenues where Jackie felt free to reveal her feelings. She used the opportunity not only to communicate her appreciation but to convey how she felt about the person as well.”
MY NOTE TO SKIPPY
OH! I get it! If I were writing to my pal, Skippy, a handsome and fun loving Golden Retriever, to thank him for sharing his dog treats with me I should try to charm him with Jackie O-type words. Maybe I will write something like this:
I loved our play-date and that was gift enough for me! The fact that you would share your Trader Joe’s jerky treats with me was beyond thoughtful. Your handsome, warm and caring companionship never fails to make my tail wag!
Love and licks,
Jackie Santi Flaherty ”
If all this stuff about manners is boring you, and sounds superficial, get a load of this:
Coco Chanel, one of Jackie’s favorite designers, once said, “Elegance is not limited solely to a woman’s wardrobe. It is as much the way she conducts herself and her way of life.” I bet Coco would have given Jackie an A (++) as Jackie conducted herself like a lady at all times — no matter what the circumstances! She inspired others to do the same, including me. I always strive to be my most dignified and lady-like when out in public with my Pet-Mom!
I can’t say the same about my fur-sister Scarlett, who gets an F (-) for ruining Mom’s antique Moroccan rug. A lady with any manners would NEVER stoop so low. Guess what happened to her when my Pet-Mom discovered Scarlett’s accident?! Absolutely nothing! In fact, Mom just picked her up, kissed her and told her not to do it again!
JACKIE TEACHES A LESSON TO DALLAS COWBOY CHEERLEADER
There is a famous story about a Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader that I want to share with you. Now mind you, this is the whole truth and nothing but the truth! Look it up on the internet if you don’t believe me!
Apparently, during one of the Cowboy tryouts a few years ago there was a pretty gal named Meagan who wanted with all her heart to be a part of the cheerleading squad. But it wasn’t working out! The director told her to read my mom’s book, What Jackie Taught Us, so that she could learn from Jackie how to move with poise and grace. Apparently my Pet-Mom’s book taught Meagan just what she needed, because she made the cheerleading squad from 2009-2012!
CAROLINE AND JOHN MIND THEIR MANNERS
Jackie O was the mother to end all mothers. She once remarked, “If you bungle raising your children, I don’t think whatever else you do well matters much.” We know that Jackie O didn’t “bungle” and she always followed her philosophy of providing love, security and discipline without tears.
My Pet-Mom told me that Marguerite Kelly, a syndicated columnist for the Washington Post and whose essay on “Motherhood” appears in the new Commemorative Edition of Mom’s book, said, “We did our best to make sure our children looked and acted like Caroline and John-John. We were sure that Jackie Kennedy’s small voice, her charm and her very good manners would be more than enough to make her children do whatever she wanted them to do.”
My Pet-Mom talks to me in a small voice too, but it’s with a southern-belle twang, as she’s from Memphis, Tennessee. I have to say, a small voice can be very persuasive, as it inspires me to do things I thought I would never, never do, like walking briskly past a tree with a very interesting smell without stopping & sniffing. You have no idea how hard that is!
LOVE MAKES THE WORLD GO AROUND
Actually I usually do whatever my Pet Mom wants me to do as I trust her, and know she loves me madly and ditto for my fur-sister, Scarlett.
One time a staffer at the prestigious Animal Medical Center in NYC asked my Pet-Mom as to who trained us and how we came to be so well-behaved. She told them that no one trained us — that we are just very much loved and that makes us want to be courteous fur-persons. Love is wonderful, isn’t it? It makes me smile and go along with my Pet-Mom’s agenda. I’ll bet that worked for Jackie O too!
You can bet I get lots of love everyday! Everyone around the house never fails to greet me when they walk in, scratch my ears and naturally pet me — and sometimes even rub my tummy, when I am in the mood for it! Mom, who is always there for me, just beams when she sees how much everyone loves Scarlett and me.
My Pet-Mom says that a lot of philosophers say that it feels better to give love than to receive it. As St. Francis of Assisi put it — “For it is in giving that we receive.”
So I’ll sign off now and wish you buckets of love and luck. You may not need your ears scratched like I do but be ready for love, or a lick!
Love and sweet licks,
Jackie S.F.—Fur-Person Personified