Many love stories start out the way this one did. As I walked through the park this Sunday morning, I watched two dogs chase each other. The larger one ran just out of reach of the smaller, plump, couch dog as if to say, “Nah nah na naa nah!” The owner whistled, breaking my fascination with the dogs when I heard the same notes used by my mother. I thought about how I hadn’t been running, I hadn’t even walked through the park on a Sunday in many weeks. The bitter cold 25F/-4C temperature is not that inviting, but I’d forgotten all the things it gives you as it simultaneously takes away all your body heat. You see the families, the children shrieking, the runners, the dogs, the adults- all relaxing with nowhere specific to be or rush to.
The young blonde girl watched as the woman tried to control the large blonde mass of fur and skin, grabbing his ruff just like a mother does to her pup. The two other dogs bounded around in the snow.
The woman gripped the yellow dog and turned to talk to his new owners, “He’s quite a handful, you’ll find out why they called him Bandit.” She says, her breath making rings on the cold New Year’s Day.
The new owners smiled as only veteran dog owners do with tough pets,
“Well, I have to get going. I hope everything works out better for you with the yellow dog. See you tomorrow, Jonathan,” the woman said to the tall dark haired man.
“Mommy, why did she grab him around the neck like that? Doesn’t it hurt?” the young girl asked. Continue reading
When faced with a public toilet, the first thing I do is assess the situation. Is the seat wet? Is the seat dirty? How clean is the bathroom in general? Does it look like there are germs crawling everywhere? Is there toilet paper? Do they provide you with the little seat covers, assuming the seat is not clean enough? Has someone carved his or her initials into the stall wall? Did they sit? The dilemma can take a few minutes, or it can be an instantaneous decision. Continue reading
My spirits start to lift at hearing Billy Joel’s voice sing, “Harry Truman, Doris Day, Red China, Johnny Ray…” from Mr. Fadden’s chemistry classroom. The late afternoon sun shines on the linoleum as I walk down the hallway towards the music to my favorite class of the day. When I finally reach the classroom, Mr. Fadden is standing at the door to greet us with a wide smile and a “Howa youh, Bud?!” in a thick Boston accent. As if I were not happy enough to just be going to his class, his comment makes my smile spread even wider, showing all of my teeth and making my cheeks pinch up. Continue reading