Ordinary Joe Goes to the Dogs Again
Veterans Day is here. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the men and women who have served in the armed forces.
Lately, sordid sex has dominated the headlines. There has been the ugly child molesting scandal at Penn State University, which has cost legendary football coach Joe “St. JoePa” Paterno his job. Meanwhile, presidential candidate and Tea Party darling Herman Cain has been accused of sexually harassing women.
Since I try to keep this blog so clean so that Aunt Prudence “the Prude” can read it without fainting quicker than a speeding satellite, I will not comment further on these lurid stories. Instead, I will write about our recent misadventure with our dog, Jackson, because people enjoy reading stories about man’s as well as woman’s best friend.
On Tuesday, my wife had enormous troubles getting my father-in-law in her car because he was in no mood to go to the physical therapist’s office in Pewee Valley, Ky. As a result, she forgot to lock the backyard gate that keeps Jackson from escaping.
A few minutes later, I let Jackson out of the house so that he could play in the backyard. Little did I know the gate was unlocked. When I was throwing out some garbage, I yelled, “Oh, no, the dog has run away!” I quickly got into my car and started looking for him. I knew if my wife and mother-in-law found out our dog was missing, I probably would be kicked out of the house for life.
Almost immediately, I spotted a couple of neighbors petting Jackson. I grabbed Jackson by his collar, but he was so high strung I could not adequately control him. He bolted away quicker than Secretariat in the 1973 Belmont Stakes.
I gasped when I saw Jackson cross Taylorsville Road, which is one of the busiest streets in Louisville. I thought certain he would be hit by a speeding vehicle. However, no one touched him, probably because he was running like a greyhound on ultra-potent speed.
I then looked for Jackson in a well-heeled neighborhood for about an hour. I tried to catch him a number of times but he was always a few hundred steps ahead of me. Once I thought I had him cornered when I saw him walking across a street. I tried to lure him into my car by waving a dog biscuit. When he heard me scream, “Jackson! Get in this @#*$! car, you damnable dog!”, he ran away again like Secretariat and headed toward the expressway.
I continued looking for our dog throughout the Hikes Point area of Louisville without success. Shortly after 4 p.m., I went home to tell my wife the bad news. However, she quickly figured out Jackson was gone when she noticed the gate was open.
After a brief discussion, we decided my wife should look for Jackson because he usually responds to her commands. Besides that, she can catch him easier than me. Anymore, I run so slowly I would have a hard time beating a snail in a 50-yard dash.
While my wife was frantically searching for our dog, I stayed home to look after my parents-in-law. My mother-in-law would not take her customary late-afternoon nap because she was worried. Meanwhile, my father-in-law slipped out of his wheelchair and fell on the floor cursing and crying. I could not pick him up because I have muscles that are more like overcooked mashed potatoes than finely crafted steel. Besides that, he was constantly yelling at me for not handling him properly.
Shortly after sundown, my wife came home without the dog. Nevertheless, she had a premonition Jackson would be coming home soon. Around 6:45 p.m., we got a call from the police saying someone had picked up Jackson near the intersection of Bardstown and Taylorsville Roads (which is life-threatening for man and beast anytime of the day), and an animal control officer would be coming by our house.
Thirty minutes later, we finally got our dog back. The officer was very friendly, and I was delighted he did not give the obligatory lecture about the perils of letting a dog loose. My wife was so happy seeing our pooch safe and did not raise a fuss about getting a citation for violating Louisville’s law about stray dogs. In fact, she was relieved she would have to pay so little to the Louisville Metro government largely because Jackson was neutered by his previous owner.
Thus, our misadventure with Jackson had the proverbial happy ending. However, the next time I buy a pet, I am going to get a cat or a parrot or a hamster or even a snapping turtle because I am getting too old and too frazzled chasing after dogs who get the bright idea of running away.
Joe’s Maybe Memorable Quote of the Day
“I’ll be doggone if a dog ever decides to become a cat’s best friend.”