You have heard of The Horse Whisperer? Well, I have become known in my neighborhood as The Dog Poop Waver.
As I look back upon the circumstances that have led to this dishonorable designation, all I can say is that as we grow older we aren’t as nimble as we once were. Also, that when I was growing up we didn’t clean up after our dogs in public places. Maybe some things should never change.
When I walk my dog, there is no way I feel prepared for what might happen next – a rabbit darting out in front of us, a potential dogfight, a car coming down the sidewalk, a drone firing B.B.’s – if I hold her leash and her doggie bag in the same hand. One load in each hand is how I choose to handle the task. Balance it out.
So, there I am on our evening walk when a new neighbor down the block waves to me as he passes in his car. Being a friendly person, I immediately wave back, but I do so with a rather voluminous doggie bag in hand. Realizing, then, that he might have misconstrued my intentions – as in you don’t go around waving to other people in the Middle East with your left hand – I immediately tapped out mea culpa in Morse Code with my head on a nearby tree. Why do I do these things? Aarghh, Charlie Brown!
But people drive by in a quick fast hurry. I don’t necessarily have time to transfer what I’m carrying to the other hand and wave back even if I was better coordinated. And so, awhile back, I committed the same offense a second time with another neighbor. And I was reported.
An Officer McGruff knocked on my door the next day. He would have given me a citation had I been younger – it is against the law to wave containerized dog poop at passing traffic in my fair city – but since I’m a senior citizen, he recommended a new class that was starting up. Seems I’m not the only one.
There are fourteen of us who will be taking an evening class for the next six weeks. It’s a form of modified occupational therapy designed to teach dog people “How to Walk and Wave at the Same Time.” It was developed by the grandson of the man who designed the course, “How to Walk and Chew Gum at the Same Time.” I guess they like to keep it in the family.
I’m looking forward to our first session, but my dog isn’t at all interested.