Long-time friends of Fleming & Curti, PLC, will recall the late Odin Tyvlytter and his colleague Duncan. After the sad death of Odin, we recruited Rosalind Franklin to step in. Now office visitors can meet with Roz and Duncan if they wish. Usually, of course, there’s also a lawyer involved in those meetings.
Meet Rosalind — “Roz” to her friends and admirers
Rosalind Franklin, like her eponymous inspiror, is one smart cookie. She has mastered tasks that would have seemed trivial to most Cambridge chemists, but which flummox many four-month-old canines. “Sit” and “shake” were easy; “settle down” is still in the planning stages.
Roz (there’s little evidence that the original Rosalind ever used or would have approved of the familiar name) is a Cardigan Welsh Corgi. That’s not the kind of dog the Queen of England favors — though we prefer to believe that is because of lack of acquaintance rather than prejudice. The Queen has long raised her parents’ choice of dog, the similar-but-different Pembroke Welsh Corgi.
Fleming & Curti, PLC, has actually employed several Corgis over the years — including both Pembrokes (some readers may recall Wyatt Earp, Joseph and Agnes) and Cardigans (Odin was the best exemplar, but his cousins June Carter and Ozzie Smith made regular appearances). Unlike Odin (who was a strikingly original blue merle in coloring), Roz is a brindle. That’s a more ordinary coloring, but her mini-blaze and outsize personality make the coloring base fade into insignificance quite quickly.
Roz and Duncan
Duncan, now promoted to Senior Canine Greeter, is a tall, gangly Golden Doodle. His energy level is high, but Roz can even wear him out. Lord knows she does the same for the rest of us.
Duncan takes his mentoring duties seriously. He gently corrects Roz’s youthful exuberance when she gets out of hand. He patiently demonstrated “shake” until the treats were almost exhausted but his young student had picked up the concepts. And he sees his responsibilities as including front-office greeting duties; he’s showing her how to complete those tasks in a gentle, supportive and non-threatening way.
Roz and Duncan have become the Mutt and Jeff of the elder law community. They are inseparable (partly because Roz has her needle teeth embedded in his ear hair much of the time). They share a love of clients and an outsize hope that they can help make legal consultations less frightening and more friendly.
Roz handles a number of responsibilities in the office. In addition to her typical canine responsibilities (warning about dangerous — and perfectly safe — individuals walking by, cleaning up in the kitchen, etc), she has keen people skills. She can also help dispose of unwanted footwear, but we are working on limiting that aspect of her worklife.
Mostly, Roz greets people, attends conferences and takes (almost indecipherable) notes. We’re working with her and Duncan to try to improve both of their skillsets to the point that we can bill them out. In the meantime, they perform their functions for clients and staff without charge. Except, of course, that they both live off their “tips”. That is, they will both work for dog treats — which we provide, if you want to stop by just to see if you can get either of them to “shake”. Who knows — maybe we’ll get to “roll over” next!