A memoir of musings, allegories and adventures covering my inspired life...

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Won't YOU be my Neighbor?

So the other day my "special" dog Maggie decided to bolt through the front door into the neighborhood. It was trash day and there was a smorgasbord of rotten people food displayed at everyone’s curbside and ripe for the taking. My arms were full of shopping bags and I did not have time to act quickly enough to stop her escape. There she was, eyes widened with excitement, tongue waving in the wind, smiling from ear-to-ear as she rounded the front corner of the house and disappeared from my view.
I yell, “Steele!!! Maggie just took off! Hurry, run and catch her before she becomes road kill!” From the opposite end of the house I hear the quickening pace of bare feet thumping on our hardwood floors, then the front door slams, and silence.

Can you tell we have this drill pretty much under control? Yep, it happens every couple of months, and sporadically enough to warrant letting our guard down and trusting that her “wild” days are long past, only to be disappointed time and time again.

I take a deep breath and begin putting away my things, confident that my son will prevail in the battle of wit and dexterity that is no doubt occurring on my front lawn at this very moment. And, as expected, about five minutes later Steele walks in, Maggie cradled in his arms panting and licking him between grunts.

So I tell him, “Great job as usual, babe.” And he’s all, “Well, I met the new neighbors!”

Me: New neighbors?

Steele: Apparently there’s a new Arabic family moving in down the block. You know, the really conservative dressers with all the robes to cover everything but half their face?

Me: Yeah, how did you meet them? Were they walking around the block?

Steele: Not exactly. I was so caught up in catching Maggie, I didn’t notice where I was running. Maggie would stop running just long enough for me to get like two inches from her and then she would bolt in the other direction. So I finally outsmarted her and grabbed her and I was like, “Aha! Gotcha ya little stinker!” And then I looked up and I was pretty much face-to-face with our new neighbors. I was in their garage...while they were moving their things in...standing between them and their front door.

Me: Well, did you say ‘Hello, welcome to the neighborhood?’

Steele: Not exactly, I kinda just said “Sorry.  Excuse me. I was trying to catch my dog.”

It was at this moment that my son put Maggie down on the ground and I realized what had just transpired down the block. My 14 year old son, in his haste to save my dog from her own stupidity, ran out of the front door wearing nothing but Looney tunes lounge shorts and a look of determination.

Me: Well, did you say anything else?

Steele: The lady was trying not to laugh at me. I couldn’t blame her. It’s not every day you‘re welcomed to the neighborhood by a half-naked teenager chasing a retarded dog in circles in your front yard. But she was nice, she said ‘Nice to meet you.’ And I told her it was nice meeting her too. Then I left as fast as I could.

Me: Hmmm, maybe we should make them cookies one day soon.

Steele: Or maybe we should just avoid them from now on.

Welcome to the neighborhood!