Kettle, you’re so difficult

As Monkey and I walked to school this morning, and then as Licorice and I continued on without him, I mused on what must go through the dog’s head on these walks. It took her about two days to figure out that once Otto and Chickadee leave, that means A WALK IS IMMINENT. The resultant excitement means that I get to experience the joy of getting dressed, brushing my teeth, and finding my sneakers all while the whining, wagging, spaztastically excited dog tries to trip me.

Sometimes my favorite part of the day is when we’re ready to go and I hold up the leash and tell her I’m not putting it on her until she sits. She wants to, she really does, but IT’SSOEXCITING and it’s sort of like her legs just dance out from under her even when she’s trying to comply. In fact, I usually just stand there, waiting, until she flops over on her back in surrender. (No one ever accused Licorice of being particularly dignified.)

Anyway, the point is, she does love our morning walks beyond all reason.

And once we set out, there are certain things I can count on her to do, such as:
1) Pull on the leash until she chokes herself. She’ll then stop, cough a couple of times, and then do it again.
2) Desperately want to be petted by the ONE child we pass every day who is deathly afraid of dogs.
3) Stop and growl at the telephone pole that once had a squirrel on it, just in case, you know, that squirrel comes back and needs to know she’s in charge.
4) Try to eat bugs. Tasty!
5) Sniff that one large clump of grass VERY INTENTLY, then bolt away from it like it bit her.
And—my personal favorite:
6) Mentally calculate the distance between available garbage cans in such a way so as to maximize the amount of time I have to spend walking along, carrying a bag of poop.

I’m telling you, IT’S UNCANNY.

And no, she does not poop in the same spot every day. But it’s like we pass a can and then she thinks to herself, “Keep walking… just a little bit further… okay, we’re sufficiently past it that she can’t go backwards, she can only go forwards, and… NOW is a perfect time to drop a steaming pile.” And yea, verily, I spend a huge chunk of my soothing morning walk TOTING CRAP.

I think she does it just to be difficult, I really do.

On the other hand, I was out today, and I needed to get home and get back to the million and one things I’m supposed to be doing today, but I am also making chili in my crock pot and needed a can of pinto beans, because of course I hadn’t realized we were out. No problem! I will just stop on the way home.

But… the supermarket is kind of out of the way, and I don’t want to waste any more time than absolutely necessary. So I started driving home and trying to figure out where I could buy a can of beans without going to the supermarket. Of course, I knew for sure that a Giant Big Box store was close to home, but I really REALLY REALLY hate shopping there, so I thought about other options.

Well, there’s a quick-mart kind of thing, but it’s on the other side of the road, and who knows if they’ll even have beans. Oh, wait, here’s a drugstore. They’ll probably have ’em. I’ll just swing right in here.

No beans.

Well, there’s a Dollar Store in this same strip mall, I’ll just walk on down there and get one. I’m going to lose some time to walking, but it’s stupid to drive down the strip for this, so I’ll just do a little light jog. No problem.

No beans.

Finally back to my car, I tried to figure out where else I could go. I thought there was one more option but as I drove up on it, it turned out to be out of business. Fiiiiiine. Giant Evil Big Box Store it is, for a stupid can of beans.

They had beans, of course. I only had to walk three miles to find them.

So I finally made it back home, and the chili is now complete in the crock, and I can’t help thinking about the fact that if I’d just gone straight to the damn grocery store, I probably would’ve been home a lot quicker. Somehow it all just got sort of needlessly drawn-out.

Not on purpose, you understand. That’s just sort of… how I am.

The dog says she totally understands, by the way.


  1. elz

    Mmm, chili. Sounds delicious, but it is currently the temperature of the sun here and I just can’t eat anything hot and hearty (see also soups, stews) until it cools down another 15 degrees. You hear that, God?! I need it to be at least 80 degrees! Amen.

  2. RuthWells

    You are clearly made for one another.

  3. Scottsdale Girl

    mmmmmm chili….like ELZ though, no cooking, not even crockpot cooking is going to happen while the Devil is still vacationing here…

  4. Tracy

    All I can do is laugh. LOL (only because I can relate) LOL

  5. Julie

    If you could just come over my way and let all these adorable new college students know that they need to carry a doggie poop bag, instead of decorating my sidewalk, I’d be so grateful! I’m clumsy enough…trying to jog while dodging the piles is pretty much beyond me!

  6. Amy

    I did a search like that for breakfast sausage the other day and it was ridiculous. And further complicated by the fact that every in-and-out involved the buckling and unbuckling of a car seat. I ended up with bacon instead, which isn’t such a bad thing, but still.

  7. Patricia

    Wait, you throw the poop away in OTHER people’s trash cans? Or are there public trash cans along your walking route?

    Don’t ask me why, but that just stuck me. When I walk the dog, I end up carrying the bag of poop all the way home to throw it away in my can — I don’t know why I can’t put it in someone else’s, but it I can’t. My dog, my trash can, I guess.

    I know, I don’t just have issues, I have a whole subscription.

  8. Melissa

    @Patricia, I love this:
    I know, I don’t just have issues, I have a whole subscription.
    I’m totalling using that today!

  9. SillyMe

    I would be furious if someone used my can to throw away their dog poop. If my can is out, that means that the trash got picked up last night. In our neighborhood we have to keep the trash cans in our garage. I don’t need stinky dog poop all week to add to the bouquet in my garage during the summer. Ick.

    [Ed. note: Uh, after Patricia’s comment and then this one, I feel the need to clarify that these are public waste receptacles I’m talking about. I don’t just randomly chuck my dog’s feces into other people’s trash!]

  10. ramblin red

    My dogs do the pooping out of range of the trash bins too….drives me batty, but at least I am always pushing a jog stroller so I can put it in the cargo area and not touch it, but, oy!

  11. addy

    Yep right there in front of the neighbor’s house with the beautifully manicured lawn. Yep that’s us… nope forgot the poop bag. Isn’t life grand?

  12. Brigid

    My son is one of those children deathly afraid of dogs. You’d be surprised at the people (not you) who insist THEIR dog is nice and he has nothing to be afraid of and then bring the dog CLOSER as if that will help my child who is screaming his head off. He’s not afraid of mean dogs. He’s afraid of ALL dogs. Whew, apparently I needed to get that out. As you were.

  13. Jenn

    Oh, how I hate the evil big box stores! Well, ok just the one. The biggest, most evil big box store of all. I am afraid to use its name, that’s how big and evil it is. No matter how great or not-so-great my day is going it can only ever be made worse by a trip to evil-big-box-store.

  14. Cele

    We had our first rain of the season so I had to have chili dogs.

  15. Jane

    So, you chucked your dogie dodo into public receptacles (yay) and you got your morning walk/jog in by finding a can of pinto beans. Win-win. And win for a yummy dinner! I’m not a shopper in those stores, either. Just finding a silver lining?

  16. Alison C

    If I wasn’t 5000 miles away in Ireland I would swear you are talking about by dog!! She is exactly the same as Licorice!

  17. Brigitte

    Glad for the clarification, Mir! And I also will be stealing Patricia’s “subscription” thing.

    At least you don’t hand off the bag to Monkey on the way into his school, “Oh, I’m sure there’s a trashcan by the door, honey.” Just imagine the trauma. ;-)

  18. Lisa

    I love hearing about your dog because there are so many things that I can relate to and then I think…okay maybe we are normal!? (Remember the worrying about her eating post? I live that!) Anyway, I had to laugh at the calculating between garbage cans and carrying poop. I carry poop, too, but what I love about our walks is that my dog has the ability to have enough pee to get a little on every. single. tree. How do they do that?!

  19. Katie in MA

    Oh my god you’re turning into your dog (…or is it the other way around?). :)

  20. Pats

    I have been known to knock on people’s door to ask for a bag, if my dog offends in their yard. Annoying? Maybe. But not as annoying as finding a big steamer in your yard.

    I’ve debated the whole “is is ok to put well-wrapped poop in other people’s garbage cans?” thing. If their garbage cans are kept outside, is it ok? I’m thinking how I would feel if I found that in my garbage can. Not that I want strangers filling up my cans with their trash (I have a crazy ex-husband who does that already, he doesn’t need the competition), but I’d rather it was in my trash instead of on my lawn.

  21. mamaspeak

    My dog is not allowed to poop when we walk. (see: Dog Whisperer) She’s “working” when we walk, bathroom breaks are for home. Before I joined the DW cult I used to put saddle bags on her (purchased cheap thru Cabella’s, which carries really inexpensive dog supplies BTW,) and make her carry her own bags, full or not. I don’t carry my kid’s crap around, I’m not carrying around my dogs. (Course I didn’t have kids then. Need to teach them to be “working” when out and about now.)

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