my stench-ridden backpack sits in a corner of the foyer, adam and I sort-of-hit paydirt at the Ballard Goodwill and I rescue a little dog and feel miserable about it
I wanted to post a picture from Angel’s Landing, tonight. But I haven’t even unzipped my backpack (my camera is in there). I’m having arrangements made to dip it in battery acid, the combination of polyester fabric and body odor have combined to form a stench sweet like carrion, highly offensive to all living organisms except the little beetles that lay eggs in sloth poop. Adam and I read about that tonight. Did you know algae grows in sloths’ fur because it gets so wet and soggy?
On our way to the grocery store this morning, Adam and I made an out-of-the-way-on-the-way stop at the Ballard Goodwill and we picked over the skeletal remains of the toys, everything unmarked was 99 cents. Don’t bother going, there is nothing good left over. We took the last best stuff:
- a big Tonka pickup truck with dumper, it looks brand new.
- Casanova, Sigmund Freud, Iron Man and Wolverine action figures to add to my collection; well, Wolverine is actually a little statue. He’s featured fighting a weird guy who doesn’t have sideburns
- rubber Batman facemask, though I now regret it because I forgot Michael Keaton ruined batman for me
- a lion, stegosaurus, zebra and giraffe
Tonight while out and about in the neighborhood I chased a runaway black terrier around for nearly an hour, committing to the rescue because he was close to getting himself killed, dashing in and out of traffic on East Madison Street. At least a half dozen people looked at me blankly as mid-stride I pleaded with them to help me round him up, a few held up their arms as if to say “you want me to chase that little fucker?” A little old lady in lower Madison Valley on her evening walk finally relented and only because I think she thought I wanted to mug her. She proved useless, as she had a bad case of scoliosis.
Up and down I ran after that little dog, around the same blocks, over and over and over and over. I refused to give up on him, even though my lungs were burning, my back was locking up and I was soaked with sweat. He was a pudgy little dog, and I thought I could wear him down. We were like two boxers going to the 12 round, I’m sad to say. We both looked pathetic.
I tired him out really good and the tipping point came when he got distracted by a friendly young dog in a fenced yard. The door to the little house was open and I could see an elderly lady and young boy inside. The lady came outside and I won her to my cause. I backed off and she tried to tempt the little terrier into her yard with a biscuit, he got spooked and dashed off. Her grandson, perhaps all of 13 years old, joined me in the chase. A couple times the little terrier nearly succumbed to the power of the scooby snack, but he was wise to us and pretty soon I was on my own again. The wild goose chase would eventually bring us back to the same block, and this time the grandson was ready with a leash. I pleaded with him to check for traffic every time we dashed to the next block in hot pursuit, I was terrified of the kid getting killed by a car because of a silly little dog. I also didn’t want him to get bit and warned him to be careful if we were successful cornering the little pooch. Now that he was involved, the stakes of this doggy-caper were starting to seem too high.
The furball on the lam finally gave in to his stomach. We got him on a leash. The boy’s grandma pulled up in her station wagon, the little terrier didn’t mind getting into the car. I gave them the details of the chase to relay to the dog’s owner. I deflected a lot of praise to the kid, he seemed shy and awkward but proud to be part of the rescue. But the truth is, it annoyed me awfully I chased that little sucker around for an hour until we were both ready to collapse and in the end I didn’t get the satisfaction of returning him home. Is this the complicatedness of altruism? Why is it important that I get any credit? I wanted the goofy little mutt to be safe, that’s all that mattered to me. I didn’t run up and down the hills of Madison Valley for a reward. I’m standing here now at my laptop, soaked with sweat still, bewildered and disappointed. Is there really any such thing as a random act of kindness? Am I simply over thinking this so I have something to write about besides a putrid backpack and Sigmund Freud action figure?
My dog, Lucy the pug, would never lead anyone on a wild goose chase. When I got home I gave her a little scratch behind the ears and an extra helping of table scraps.