The other day, a friend of mine came over for a brief visit and he remarked how sweet and calm my dog seemed (which was nicer than saying, “I think your dog is in a coma.” He’s the laziest dog in history. He’s literally snoring in the corner as I write this). I answered him honestly. “I don’t know what I would’ve done, losing my job and everything, without this dog around.”
I try not to talk about Charlie Bagel too much because all too often I have this nightmare of turning into That Single Woman, the one in her forties who dresses her pomeranians in T-shirts and carries them with her everywhere, shoving pictures of them in her wallet and talking to them in baby voices in public. It keeps me up at night, it really does. The other morning I walked CB and caught a glimpse of myself in the reflective glass of a bar window- sweatpants, snow boots, sweatshirt and overcoat coat, giant dog loping next to me. I immediately marched home and put on my fanciest dress, a floor length number with a ruffled train. I took a few deep breaths and vowed not to look or speak to Charlie for at least an hour. Desperate action had to be taken.
Because he’s the reason I don’t wake up at noon.
He gets me out, in the air and the sun, for at least two hours every day, even in Chicago’s sadistic version of spring.
He’s on a schedule, so I’m on a schedule.
He’s who I take my cue from him in the morning, when he bounds out of his crate and spins in circles and his big bushy tail goes crazy, he’s beyond thrilled that a new day has started (I usually ignore him or swear at him and crawl back into bed for an hour but it’s the thought that counts).
He’s ok so I have to believe that I must be ok too. And that’s all I’m going to say about that.