The OFFICIALunOFFICIAL English Bulldog Mascot

♫Ain’ Nobody Cryin’

In bulldogs, Dog Parks, Jobless, Popular Culture, Popular Music, Television, Tv Show Theme Songs, Unconditional love, Unemployed on February 15, 2010 at 9:03 PM
♫I don’t know why but I’m feeling so sad
I think I just lost the best place I ever had
Got no one to chase me
Cause my dog park is closed, see
Man o man now where can we be–  to the tune “Lover Man” performed by Billie Holiday
Our community dog park is currently closed for renovations. For me, That’s a good thing since I still have another four months of convalescence after TPLO surgery.  I have visited other dog parks in recent days but I miss my regular dogs at Redhawk. For Her, the dog park is the fun, social hot spot especially designed for our times.  It’s the place to see and be seen. Different breeds freely associating with the only goals being to play and have fun and maybe sniff some butt.

It’s the closest thing to life in the paradise earth.  A place where People unabashedly indulge PDA’s with their dogs.  A place where People love to talk about their dogs, where People love to be with their dogs and where they don’t mind being around OPD– other People’s dogs. Smiles and goodwill abound at the dog park. As dogs it is our job to bring out smiles and laughter in People. I, for one take my job very seriously. It’s what I do.  Love, love, love.  {:O*~Ooo. Somebody ought to write a song about That.

Dog park etiquette is enforced like the mafia code of conduct. You are expected to supervise your dog. Your dog may not be aggressive. Your dog must be healthy. You are expected to pick up after your dog.

For those who decide not to observe The Code, the ever vigilant Poop Police who caught your dog in the act will ever so nicely make you an offer you can’t refuse. No tough talk. No cement shoes or severed horse heads between red satin sheets here. No one gets angry.

There are no flushed red faces, no outbursts of temper, or dirt kicking or pouting. No, everyone dutifully and often good-naturedly marches right over to the temporary latrine, crisp, crackling plastic bag at the ready, and removes the offending mass. No static at all.

There are those occasional visitors who are both indifferent and disrespectful of The Code. In that case, the Poop Police will pick it up, albeit grudgingly and after some bit of discussion, ever mindful of the fact that the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few.

After a while, people are actually falling over themselves volunteering to pick up the poop. Cooperation is the operative word. Consideration, the next. People don’t want to step in it and no one wants their dog to step in it and track it into the car or home, or worse, eat it.

The small dog park and the big dog park are separated by a chain link fence. The difference between big dog owners and small dog owners is like the difference between the blue jeans-and-tie wearing high school teacher and the multi-pocketed-multi-colored-oversized-tent dress wearing elementary school teacher.

One pair of matching bookends, different as night and day.”

Big dog owners seem to be a more mixed, more diverse, more inclusive and homogeneous demographic. In the big dog park there are no cliques, no ridicules “My dog doesn’t like your dog” prejudices. Young people don’t seem to mind at all hanging with Old School.

Everybody’s protective and tolerant of one another’s dogs. No one manhandles or is rude or unkind to anyone’s dog. There are never any overprotective “parent” outbursts. When a dog park Regular is absent for a few days in a row, there is genuine concern. People take the time, not just to make small talk but if you listen really carefully you may actually witness a cogent conversation taking place.

In the Big dog park, People tend to use the entire length and width of the dog park as opposed to congregating in a specific area. It’s important to stand away from tables and chairs otherwise the dogs will congregate underneath and we all know what can happen when there’s a big dog cornered underneath.

The community dog park is a sort of hidden society. I wish more People came  back to the office after a weekend at the dog park with tales of their experiences with Daisy or Rufus or Tank. It’s not a subject that keeps people gathered around the water cooler. It’s never a “hot topic” on the View. Perhaps it should be. Perhaps dog park talk would fade and even extinguish altogether the otherwise rapacious, harmful talk so prevalent in so many offices these days.  Oh. But  I digress…

People bring their collapsible canvass chairs, their gallon jugs of water and a book, but you will only get to read your book if  there is no other person in the dog park or you are determined to be alone. It’s not like riding the subway in New York City where possessing an open book screams: “Don’t talk to me. Don’t invade my personal space.” Having a book doesn’t convey the same non-verbal “back off” message here in Southern CA. You need to stay home if you really want to be alone. Or hike.

A well attended, well supported community dog park serves a purpose that is especially important in these difficult times when people are increasingly isolating themselves because they’re jobless or are experiencing some sort of personal and/or financial difficulty.

She rather enjoys the sense of community, finds joy in a sort of camaraderie (dare I say it.., even a level of goodwill) She’s never experienced in any office She has ever worked in; Goodwill that is freely expressed and that with no strings. It not contingent upon regular attendance. There is no tithing. There’s nothing to join, no contract to sign, no public baptisms, no oaths, no conditions. You go to the dog park and you– just be.

People describe the love of a dog or any pet they have as “unconditional.” I don’t wake up with the consciousness That tomorrow I will die. I’m not conscious of Her anxieties or worries or concerns. I don’t see “young,” or wrinkles. Her breath doesn’t have to be minty fresh. Who am I gonna denigrate Her to if She’s a hotel housekeeper?  Who am I gonna brag about Her to if She’s King of the World in her hometown, successful and  famous or CEO of something? All I wanna do is eat and have a place to sleep and wake up every day and BE secure.  Oh. And have some fun.

Whether it’s the back seat of a Honda Civic or a luxurious Bentley, if they’re both headed to the community dog park or dog beach or PetSmart or Safeway, won’t we all still get to where we intend to go anyway?

I only wanna be with Her–  just the way She is. Your bulldogs and all dogs feel the same way about you.

That’s how it is at the dog park. The only thing you have to do is be yourself.  We love you just the way you are.  Canvass chair optional.

Goodwill energies I direct
Toward each and every one of you
Each and every day

“And there came to be evening and there came to be morning…”

That’s Life today.

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