I don’t do all my miles on runs, Mom often takes me on walks too. She has been taking me on more walks to new places lately because she says that I need to learn to “be cool” so that I don’t “scare people.” We walk through the neighborhood after Mom gets home from work (known as “doggie rush hour”) practicing “being cool.” We walk to the library to return books and to the bike shop (which is my favorite because I’m allowed inside and they give me liver treats). My least favorite are the walks to Starbucks or the bubble tea place where Mom leaves us tied up outside and goes inside for minutes and minutes and minutes; sometimes 3 whole minutes at a time! One of these times, she’s going to go into Starbucks and never come out, and no one is going to find us, and me and my sister are going to die alone out there on the sidewalk tied to a 2-hour parking sign.
But anyway… I thought that my sister would be on my side of the “is it cool to jump on Friends and bark at sketchy dogs?” debate. What’s the point of having a twin if they don’t agree with you on everything? The first walk that I saw the mail man headed out to murder our neighbors, I whispered to her: “Hey, watch this!” then, “Hey! Hey you! Mister Murder Guy! Nice hat! Goober! Go sit on a thumbtack you nasty swine!” Imagine my surprise when my sister got all up in my face and nipped at me. “Why do you have to be a jerk like that? Shut up!” Whaaaaaa?! I was cowed and a little embarrassed. Maybe it isn’t cool to threaten to maul someone, even if it’s just for fun and you don’t really mean it. Then we saw a dog across the street. He was ignoring me and minding his own business, which really gets my goat. “Hey you! Yeah, I’m talking to you!” I started to yell. But before I’d gotten out the “heh” in “hey” she snapped at me again. “Seriously, shut up!” she said. Mom was pleased. I sulked.
It’s been like that for almost a month. Every time I want to harangue someone, Bodie catches me before the words can even come out and shushes me. So this morning when I smelled another dog with his runner coming toward us in the dark, and Mom saw the dog’s penny eyes reflected in her headlight, I kept quiet so that I wouldn’t “be an asshole.” Imagine my surprise when Bodie lunged at him out of nowhere shouting, “I’m gonna get you, you filthy, no-good son of a…” Then the other dog’s person barked, and Mom used her monster voice and it was all over in a second and they were behind us and everything was safe.
I ran the whole way home with my ears pinned back in my “working ‘do” and my tail held high. Who’s a good boy?!
–Oscar the Pooch