The weather is beautiful today. At 8:30 it was already 55 degrees and not a cloud in the sky. I decided it would be nice to go for a walk with Worm.
Since he is not yet two, I didn’t actually want HIM to walk. Have you ever let a child this age walk around the neighborhood? Try cat herding, it’s more productive.
I walked, he sat on his Lightening McQueen tricycle. It has a long handle so I can push him. He doesn’t know he can propel it himself with the pedals. I’d like to keep it that way for a bit. See the above statement regarding cat herding.
Most of the walk was not blog worthy. I listened to tunes on the iPhone. Worm hit everything we passed with a big stick. I occasionally said appropriate mom things like “don’t poke that trash bag” and “don’t hit that cat.” Really, poking at garbage and small animals was fine by me, but it felt right to say those things.
Then, on the last leg of our journey, I glanced up to see a lady holding a dog and waving her arms at me. Her mouth was moving, but I couldn’t hear her over the tunes. So I politely removed my earbuds and stopped walking.
She bustled across the street to us and asked if I have a cell phone. She explained that got locked out of her house while taking her dog to pee and needed to call a friend to let her in. Of course I loaned her my phone, she looked like she might cry. I don’t do well with criers. I get embarrassed and exasperated. Also, I usually say something that makes them cry more.
While she was on the phone, Worm finally looked up at her (he is in the “pretend strangers are speaking a foreign language and smell really bad” phase of toddlerhood) and saw her dog. He said DOG! So asked him if he wanted to pet the dog and he said “NO! NO!”
Worm doesn’t want to pet the dog? He LOVES dogs. This is the kid that wants to pet the dogs on TV. He wants to pet dogs that are viscously growling at him from the back of pick-up trucks. He sticks his fingers through our fence and cries “pet, pet, pet” when our neighbor’s dog is in the yard. He constantly wants to watch videos of himself petting Coco’s dogs. Why does he not want to pet this dog?
So I really looked at the dog and I saw why. I didn’t even want to be standing next to this dog. It was the ugliest thing I have ever seen. This dog should have been in a shoebox in the backyard a decade ago.
It was a toy poodle, but with a huge bloated belly. Its tiny poodle head and skinny poodle legs looked like they were sticking out of a bowling ball covered with tannish/pinkish mashed potatoes. The dog’s skin was beige, but its fur was a weird peachy color. The dog’s belly was so swollen that you could see more skin than fur. It also had those gross doggie eye boogers. I wouldn’t pet this dog on a bet.
Then the lady handed back my phone and noticed we were both staring at her dog with our mouths open. She misread our disbelief as interest and held the dog out toward me saying “This is Ginger. She is 16 years old and a diabetic.” I actually took a step backward before I could catch myself. I usually have better control over my body language, but the repulsive dog was really throwing me.
The lady was clearly not big on social cues, so she kept talking about the dog. She told me how she came to be Ginger’s owner. This was not an interesting story. She told me all of Ginger’s medical history. This was slightly more interesting than the doggie adoption story, but only because at one point Ginger died on the vet’s table and he “brought her back from the other side.” Yes that is the exact phrase she used. I had trouble controlling my body language at this point too, I think the “I’m trying not to laugh at you” look crossed my face briefly. She saw the look on my face and said “Everyone is always so touched by that story.”
Then she said, “You know Ginger is what they call an apricot poodle. I love her color so much that I took a sample of her fur to my beautician so she could cover my gray with the same color.”
Here is what happened in the next two seconds.
My brain screamed: HOLY MARY MOTHER OF GOD! Did she really just say that she dyes her hair to match her disgusting little dog?!!!???!!?
My mouth said: “It was nice to meet you. I’m sorry we can’t wait until your friend arrives, but I am afraid the baby’s head will sunburn without a hat.”
I was so desperate to get away from her before I said or did something offensive, that the best excuse I could think of was a sunburn on my child’s head.
How the hell did I come off looking like the weird one?