Bad morning. I woke up too early, and I was still feeling tired when my dad woke up and we walked the doggie. Up the street, we passed a woman pushing a double stroller with two kids in it. And then a man walking a beagle-sized dog came around the corner.
I immediately went into self-defense position by separating my feet on the pavement, leaning on my back leg, and holding LuLu’s leash with both hands. This was all I could do. The woman with kids was blocking my escape route right behind me. There was no other way out! (I know, right? This sounds like a horror movie. Almost. There were no snakes.)
So the man with the dog just stared at me for a long time, and then he tried to inch around me and LuLu. Well, LuLu was having none of it, and she kept lunging for him and his little dog. (Really, she just wanted to play. She’s a huge, ninety-pound lover. But still.)
The woman with kids turned and started laughing at my predicament. “Ohh, does the puppy want to play? Does the puppy want to play?”
I couldn’t reply because all of my energy was being used to control my dog and to maintain my singular focus on such. So my dad started talking to her in order to be polite.
Meanwhile, the man with the dog was still trying to inch past us. Um, buddy, it’s not going to end well.
My dad took action and grabbed Lulu’s leash at the midpoint and started dragging LuLu (and me) up the sidewalk in an effort to pass the double stroller. But I turned and saw that the dogwalker was finally crossing the street! Whew.
So I turned around with LuLu and called out to my dad, “He crossed the street! He has morals after all.”
The man heard me and started yelling at me.
“Oh, shut up,” I yelled. “You’re a horrible person.”
(Should I try coffee? I’ve never been able to develop a taste for it.)
So then as Codger and I were walking up Dundee, I went on and on about how awful that guy was to not take the initiative to turn around with his dog or cross the street. Now, rationally I understand that LuLu’s inability to greet other dogs is entirely our responsibility and not that of other dogwalkers. But I’d left rationality behind.
So then we turned onto Harvard and that man with his dog greeted us by entering Harvard from a block up. He saw us and immediately raced across the street.
“Oh, he came back,” I told my dad loudly. “And he’s crossing the street! Smart man.”
Naturally this caused him to start yelling at me again, so I told him off. “Shut up!” I yelled. “I don’t care about you. Drop dead.”
Then we dropped LuLu off at home and proceeded to take a longer walk without her. (She’s a lazy large doggie.) At the main intersection of Douglass Boulevard and Bardstown Road, several cars careened through the red light as usual. I pointed at them and shook my head, and one of them honked at me. That elicited a thumbs-down from me. Not cool.
At the end of our walk, while we were crossing Douglass Boulevard, a young woman turning left almost ran over me. She came within two inches of me, and I felt the wind of her car; and with the direction I was walking, I had no clue she was there until it was too late. She barely missed me. Now, she got the finger. Under the circumstances, I don’t think anyone would blame me for that.
The problem persists in my neighborhood of bad driving being tolerated. Drivers are encouraged by a total lack of police presence toward these matters to not stop at stop signs and to not stop at red lights and to not yield safely to pedestrians. It’s an accident (or several) waiting to happen. I get that murders and violence are “worse”, but at this point, if I were to get run over, I’d be more than willing to sue the city for gross and negligent incompetence. This has been going on for several years now, since way before the pandemic, and safety is an important issue.
It’s also frustrating to live in a world where people laugh at my dog’s inability to behave. Like it’s freakin’ funny somehow? I can see being peeved by it or feeling nervous, but laughter? It’s like, please quit laughing and blocking the sidewalk so I can deal with this. Thank you. Aside from the mother walking her kids, I’ve encountered dogwalkers too who observe LuLu’s issues and start to laugh. Wow. I don’t get the joke, but I’m guessing it’s on me.