I had a learning experience a few weeks back. I managed to get invited to a dinner party at a new friend’s house. There were several girls there whom I have just begun hanging out with, and I was very excited to be meeting new people. While I had plenty of opportunities to socialize in Boston, my dance card has not been particularly full since moving to Raleigh.
I was invited to bring Charlie to this dinner party, which was also exciting, because he is the best dog ever. I met these girls at a dog park, so they’re all dog people, and dogs are fun to have around. Unfortunately, nobody else had brought their dog, to this dinner party; they’d all brought their husbands. So I was the weirdo who brought her dog. Also, the one resident dog of the house was a cute scrappy puppy that delighted in chasing Charlie around endlessly. Charlie is 7 years old, and as far as jumpy little puppies are concerned, he’s pretty much over them. Also he’s a big pansy. So I guess you could say he was a little stressed out when we arrived.
In any event, there I was, leaning against the counter in the kitchen enjoying a rustic Fall beer, buzzed from socializing and spinach dip, and telling my hosts how Charlie was pretty much the best dog ever and has never done anything wrong in his life, and I happen to look down, and Charlie is at my feet, balefully pooping on the kitchen floor.
It was one of those moments where you suddenly wonder if you are dreaming, or if what is happening before your eyes is real. Charlie really has never done anything like that before, but clearly the combination of new setting and frisky puppy had set him off. Plus, I guess he had to go.
I immediately had this lightning flash of what it must feel like to be a parent sometimes. Here is this tiny creature who is your ward. You love them to bits; you are responsible for keeping them out of trouble. Like it or not, their behavior is a reflection of you, and although they are close to you, they are not you, they are their own separate individual. This means that they are going to go off and do what they want a lot of the time, leaving you powerless to stop them and obligated to clean up the destruction (and poop) they leave in their wake. Yow.
In any event, it was a good thing I was in house full of dog people. Charlie’s kitchen shenanigans unleashed a flood of ‘oh don’t worry about it, one time MY dog pooped at this awkward time or in this horrible place’ stories, which were comforting, although my face remained red for awhile.
I remain on the fence about having children. Right now a dog is the perfect amount of love, trouble and energy for me. Plus I can curse in front of him.
October 21, 2009 at 3:52 pm
this made me cackle. thanks, i needed it this morning. can so relate on so many levels. my dog is also “the coolest and best dog ever,” and though he’s yet to poop in someone’s house, sometimes the things he unexpectedly does leave me w/ a weird cocktail of reactions – quick to his defense (yet embarrassed) whilst shamelessly assuring everyone how uncharacteristic his behavior (to the point of looking completely… biased. come to think, it reminds me of myself on a date the other night when i found myself having to reassure said date that normally i don’t trip down the sidewalk (my shoes were a bit too long) or drop f-bombs every other sentence or spill beer on my date’s laps. like our dogs, sometimes we just have an off night.
October 22, 2009 at 12:03 am
That’s a very comforting thought– dogs probably DO have off nights, just like people. Poor Charlie. All day I was gearing up for a dinner party, and he had no idea what was in store for him.
October 22, 2009 at 7:00 pm
This made me laugh. I organized my company’s participation in Take Your Dog to Work Day last year. My normally angelic and perfect dog had an accident in the conference room. Who found it? The president/CEO. Yeah. No Take Your Dog to Work Day this year. This kind of thing really does happen to everyone with a dog. 🙂
October 23, 2009 at 10:11 pm