The background to this scenario is that for the first half of the summer, while Alix and I were both working, I would often have to come home with the baby in his carrier in order to walk the dog around lunchtime. I would take the dog out for five minutes, and attempt to gracefully pick up poop while keeping a fussy, sweaty baby away from the rambunctious dog and said poop. One day while I was doing all of this, a man felt the need to stop me mid-poop pickup and tell me:
"You should really put a hat on that baby!"
"Mm-hmm, thank you for your concern."
A. It was a cloudy day. B. We were in the shade of our 12-story building. C. We were outside for two minutes. D. The baby was pouring sweat in the 90 degree heat and would enter full-blown meltdown mode if I insisted he continue to wear his sun hat, which, thank you very much, I do put on his downy head when there is the slightest chance that sunlight will make contact with his skin.
The man walked off, disgusted by my poor parenting skills, while the dog continued jumping, and I continued scooping, before herding us all inside so the baby could nap. Truly, thank you for your concern.
Alix's experience occurred while she was walking Rupert home from our vet's office, a place that Rupert inexplicably loves. He loves it so much, in fact, that he will often put up a huge fuss on the walk home as he strains to walk backwards to his beloved vet, Dr. Walsh. At a particularly trying moment, Alix stood patiently clutching the end of the leash while Rupert defiantly flopped on the sidewalk (this happens more often than you might expect). While waiting for him to move, a large, obnoxious woman came lumbering up to Alix and insisted that "she wasn't handling the situation correctly" and that she "needed to bring a toy along" to entice the dog to walk with her. She then proceeded to attempt to lure our timid puppy towards her, a maneuver that is destined to fail, since Rupert is terrified of anyone obnoxious enough to get in his face. After failing to entice our dog, she took another crack at offering Alix a solution.
"Are you married?" she asks.
"No..." responded Alix, not really seeing where this was going.
"Do you have a boyfriend?" was the immediate response. Without waiting for a reply, she followed with, "The dog must have a stronger bond with your boyfriend, which is why he doesn't listen to you."
Ah yes. Thank you, kind stranger, for your concern, not only with our dog's discipline but with Alix's sexual orientation and relationship status. In a feat of irony, Rupert immediately got up and trotted home with Alix, despite his apparently stronger bond with her boyfriend.
|Maybe you should let your boyfriend walk the dog...|