The guys work as salesmen for and serve some confused customers at Joey Fatone's hot dog joint.
"This was broadcast like the World Trade Center, this was on all day and all night," says one talking head in Allison Berg and Frank Keraudren's riveting new decade-in-the-making documentary The Dog (out today), about John Wojtowicz's 1972 attempted Brooklyn bank robbery to pay for his lover's male-to-female sex change operation. The botched heist and ensuing hostage standoff — an absurdist melodrama that featured an in-person plea for surrender by Wojtowicz's lover (dragged in from the Kings County Hospital psychiatric ward where she was under observation following a recent suicide attempt); a circus-like crowd of thousands cheering and jeering behind police barricades; and ultimately the gunning down of Wojtowicz's co-conspirator Sal Naturale on the tarmac at Kennedy Airport while they awaited an escape plane — was the basis for the 1975 Oscar-winning movie Dog Day Afternoon starring Al Pacino as Wojtowicz and John Cazale as Naturale. While the movie's running time is 125 minutes, the actual standoff lasted 14 hours, the entire saga playing out on local New York City television, even preempting coverage of Richard Nixon's acceptance of the Republican presidential nomination at the party's national convention that same evening. Yet even those New York residents who were glued to their TVs don't know half the story's incredible twists and turns, which are now, at last, fully captured by Berg and Keraudren through rare footage and exhaustive, expletive-laced interviews with Wojtowicz before he passed away in 2006, at age 60, from cancer. Here are a few of the most surprising things about the life of the man who — as much for his insatiable libido as his hard-to-pronounce surname — called himself "The Dog" and that fateful August day more than 40 years ago.
Historically, Salukis were used for hunting by nomadic tribes. Typical quarry included the gazelle, hare, fox and . While hunting hares, Bedouin hunters would sometimes ride close to their quarry on a holding a Saluki, which would be thrown towards the prey while at speed to give the dog a running start. Gazelle hunters also used hawks to gouge out the eyes of the prey so that a Saluki could then bring down the blinded animal.
Gallery: Beloved hot dog icon Steve's Lunch to reopen in Sal's diner
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Before the neutering campaigns take place the local NGO is informing the population of Sal well in advance and we are usually finding every day a queue of people with their dogs, waiting for us to start! They are not only bringing their dogs and cats for sterilisations but also for other treatments as this is the only time their pets have the chance of being seen by a vet. We are treating lots of bite wounds, remove tumours and badly injured eyes, extract rotten teeth and treat uncountable patients with mange and other parasitic diseases. Depending on funding we are also treating TVTs, of which we find lots of cases in Sal. These tumours are easily treated with chemotherapy (one injection every week for 4 weeks) but the drug vincristine is very expensive and we can only afford to take a few bottles with us. Due to generous donations to the NGO ‘Save cats and dogs of Cape Verde’ this time we were able to bring enough Vincristine with us to successfully treat around 10 dogs with TVTs. The improvement we saw after the first 2 injections were impressive!Sal-goo was dumped onto the Hahman shelter in Korea with her brothers last year. She is good with young children and other dogs. Very sweet baby!Sal is a handsome Dachshund/Chihuahua mix. He is about 5 yrs old and weighs 11 pounds. Sal is blind but gets around just fine. He is a little shy at first, quiet, super sweet, loves to be held and is good with other dogs and cats. Sal came from a hoarding situation but is doing well with house training. He is also crate trained. He is up to date on shots and heartworm negative, neutered and microchipped. Sal has never been leashed walked so needs some training with that.On the one hand, The Dog is a sad movie. John never really rises above his one moment of criminal fame. He doesn’t make much of himself after that. Prison and its aftermath take a toll. On the other hand, the man remains in incredibly high spirits throughout. He’s vibrant and full of energy and unapologetic. Considering that his accomplice Sal was shot dead by the FBI during the robbery, one would hope for some amount of contrition from him, but there’s none to be found. As far as John’s concerned, he lived a good life.