Thursday, June 4, 2009

A Day Off With the Puppy

I wish what follows was a fictional account of the start to my day. Sadly, every word is true.

Morning glory. Not an apt title for this morning's subject. I'd intended to get the laundry started early today, and rose at 630 to head for the bathroom. I froze when I saw a dark but unmistakable brown puddle on the stair to my right, just below eye level. Damn. Not again. The dog was standing at the foot of the stairs, wagging his entire body expectantly. My first half-step toward him was alarming for the cold wetness that spread and oozed beneath my foot from heel to toe. That moderately unpleasant sensation was quickly followed by the horror of realization, the one that screams DOG SHIT! My resultant groan had the timbre of dismay, tinged with regret, and was rounded out with a healthy dollop of outrage. I suspect the kids pulled their covers past their ears and smiled sleepily, before returning to their sugarplum dreams. I stood, my recoiled foot poised, hovering above the dirty, brown shit-slick, as I tried to manage the logistics. Do I hop back to the kitchen and try to towel off the dripping droppings? Do I clean my foot first, and then the puddles, before heading upstairs? The enormity of the mess clinging loosely to the sole of my foot suggested only one possible recourse: hop upstairs and hose off in the tub. I made my way to the foot of the stairs, and found I could use the tips of the toes on my contaminated foot to walk, fortunately eliminating the necessity of hopping up the entire flight. The dog flew off ahead, blown upstairs by the windy imprecations I directed his way. Thankfully, by sheer happenstance, he managed to avoid another puddle he'd deposited earlier, otherwise he'd have left a trail even a city boy could follow. I made it to the bathroom, and was greeted by a towel on the floor. It too had been decorated with another singularly large brown flower, with some additional random splats for good measure. I washed my foot, completely defeated, and spoke aloud to no-one in particular. "What a shitty dog. What a shitty, shitty dog."

I grabbed the towel, emptied what I could into the toilet, and returned to the scene below. I used the towel to swab the stairs, and managed to get my hands more directly involved than planned. A smile, even a rueful one, was beyond me. I'm simply not capable of that level of irony. I approached the mess on the carpet in the hall, the one with the fresh footprint, and got down on my knees. I rubbed it into the carpet, practically finger-painting now, and scarce managed to retain the contents of my stomach. After satisfying myself that the carpet was now ruined, and consoling myself that I hated it anyways, I stuffed the towel into a bag and thrust it out the door, forgetting for the moment that I was completely naked. A woman, idling in her car across the street and two doors up, jogged my memory. I assured myself, without conviction, that she couldn't have seen more than a flash of bare, white ass as I retreated somewhat more quickly than I had appeared. I rolled up the narrow carpet, tossed it outside, and fought off the urge to have a drink of something, anything, stronger than coffee. The dog continues to eye me warily. As well he should.

Now I sit, idly sipping coffee, anticipating the inevitable knock upon my door. It will be the police, investigating reports of a flasher in the area. "You seem to fit the description", he'll say. "Where were you, and what were you doing at 6:47 this morning?"

The upside? Things can only improve as the day plays out.

Optimistic, but struggling.

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