I started a blog at the behest of a friend who commented on a Facebook post I made and told me I should. Yes, I realize this is how 100% of the deluded singers who audition for American Idol end up humiliating themselves on national television. But my mother assures me that if the whole writing thing doesn’t work out, I’m still pretty enough to model.
Certain that the only way I could truly process and overcome my rage about something that happened last night was to complain about it on the Internet, I posted about the second time this year that I’ve been stopped by a stranger about my dog’s poop. She was pooping in a flowerbed that bordered the street I was walking on with my mom.
Oh excuse me. She was not merely pooping because she had to, and that’s how dog butts work; I was letting her poop (my decision) in a garden. IN A GARDEN! I hate flowers. I always walk my dog with my fingers crossed that she will hold it in until she can let loose on some flowers. Because flowers smell good and are beautiful and really, what’s not to hate?
As I was stooping down to pick up after my dog (a task made considerably harder by trying to twist the corners of my mustache and congratulating her for her form) my mother said of an approaching vehicle “uh oh, he’s going to stop.” Seconds later my efforts were spotlighted by a Lexus SUV whose driver made a huge show of swerving to a halt behind me so he could loom over me and, as I extricated turds from the foliage, and demand some answers.
“EXCUSE ME, I JUST WANTED TO KNOW WHY YOU LET YOUR DOG DO THAT? THIS,” he gestured importantly, “IS A FLOWER GARDEN.” I have never met a man in my life so committed to the tragic beauty of a wilting September row of pansies! He went on to indicate that by letting my dog poop among the browning bouquets, I was not being a good neighbor.
After listening to his tirade I politely advised him that I was not his neighbor (and he was not being very hospitable host!) and suggested we let my dog know. I turned to her and explained “Petunia? *THIS* is what we call… Wait, what is it called? A fuh- fuh- FLOWER GARDEN,” I glanced for confirmation, not having been acquainted with such fineries before his lecture, “and this man doesn’t want you pooping there.”
He huffed, commanded that I “HAVE A NICE NIGHT” (no doubt patting himself on the back for somehow emerging from his day’s crisis as “the bigger person”) and stalked back to his luxury vehicle.
Was I a tad punk rock about it? Maybe, and I had the rest of my walk to think about what made me so mad (besides it becoming a recurring situation that old dudes I don’t know insist on reproaching me for no reason).
I first wonder whether I would be approached at all if I were walking with a man instead of by myself or with my mother. Ever since Scott Adams introduced me to the specious Men’s Rights Movement (known to those of us who aren’t Caucasian men as “the history of the entire world”), I’ve wondered on what grounds bitter old white guys are waging their battle against women. I don’t have any evidence that the two men who approached me rushed right home to update their blogs about how bitches are crapping all over their world (literally), but these guys (50+, white, entitled) had all the trappings of people with such privileged lives that they literally had nothing better to take a stand against. Than dog poop and probably improperly-made coffee drinks.
I guess now is as good a time as any to digress to the first incident, in which one courageous whistleblower called the cops on me at the dog park. His novice forensics (which I liked to imagine involved a thermometer and a sentence spoken with the authority of a Medical Examiner and began with “judging by the rigor I’d place your time of defecation at…”) had somehow turned up that in a park with a circumference of more than two miles, mine was the dog that left what was apparently the only unaccounted for pile. From a half mile behind me he was shouting incomprehensibly and waving his arms at me as though I’d dropped my wallet. Or set him on fire. I patted my pockets and grew nervous upon confirming I hadn’t dropped anything at all.
Finally I was close enough to hear what he was carrying on about, and it was too close. I’m not even one to approach sane-seeming people when I’m alone in the park, much less a man unhinged enough to be placing a call to 911 dispatch with his unproveable conjecture that someone wasn’t cleaning up after their dog. Ultimately he ended up circling the park in his vehicle in preparation to block me in if I tried to leave without being first being bent over a cop car and cuffed (per the fantasy of a lunatic).
Smirks abounded when the responding officer showed up to let my accuser know that if he had threatened to block his wife or daughter from leaving a park, HE’D BE SITTING IN A JAIL CELL.
Anyway, I have walked for miles with bags of crap swinging from my hand in desperate search of a trash can. I have watched as others leave behind piles without saying a word because admirably normal people (as I otherwise so seldom congratulate myself for being) mind their own business! They assume that if inconsiderate people break the law in even minor ways, it (or karma) will eventually catch up with them. Their dog will poop and they’ll step in it. Fossilized dog poops will one day break their lawnmowers. And if not, who cares? It’s not worth the confrontation because I am a busy and important woman who hates nothing more than confrontation.
Except maybe flowers.
I also can’t deny being annoyed by people who are not only conspicuously richer than me, but who are richer than me and swoop into my life only to be unpleasant. I think there is always my secret hope that once the layers of money are peeled back, rich people are no different than the rest of us. (This supplies nutrients to the offshoot hope that I could become rich myself.) But when the only time a rich person deigns to acknowledge your existence is to poke out of Perfection World to shake his finger at you, it’s hard not to resign to the idea that rich people are actually insufferable. (And that nourishes the offshoot resignation that I may never be rich, because I’m not a dickhead.)
My only consolation is how ridiculous it must have sounded when he told his loved ones about his big evening standing up to a young woman walking her dog.
“And then I was like, ‘YOU THERE! That is a FLOWER GARDEN!'”
“…Sooo wait a minute waitaminute, was she not picking up the poop?”
“No, she was but –”
“But not until you lorded your masculine authority and sense of botanical rectitude over her?”
“No she had the bag in her hand when I stopped but! But! That’s not the point.”
And then his penis pump and Real Doll™ will have sighed discontentedly, not quite remembering that in a previous life, they didn’t pick up after their dog.