Friday, August 20, 2010

A little run-in with the locals...

I had to yell at an apparently intoxicated or otherwise mentally impaired woman today because she had to get in my face and tell me that my sweet Border Lab was actually a Pit Bull and if it got off the leash or bit her or her dog that she would sue me. If she was that concerned, she should have stayed on the other side of the street where she was. Oddly enough, she did not deny that she was intoxicated when I asked her. I guess 12:45 isn't too early to drink on a Friday.

I had just come back from and errand and lunch with #2 Son and Suki the Wonder Dog. There is a woman with a dog in my field of vision, something I am used to looking for with a dog in tow. I see her walking on the sidewalk on the other side of the street as I am getting out of the car. She is shorter than me, but a little taller than my wife. She is normal weight, which is not so normal these days. She is older than me, perhaps she is in her late 40s or early 50s. She has fairish skin with spots - she looks like she has spent her fair share of time outside, but she does not seem to tan. She is wearing a shirt that goes to her elbows, some random or tie-dye pattern, and maybe some sort of dark colored Capri pants or cargo shorts that go to her knees. Her dog is small, black and white. The dog's ears look like the Batman cowl ears from the 70's costume. Perhaps it is a French Bulldog, I cannot be certain until I spend more time with Google Image Search.

Realizing that I had not taken the recycling out, I grab the bins while I still have dog leash in my hand. Suki sniffs around the yard while I take her back and forth from the side of the house to the road. As I get the second bin to the front, I see the woman crossing the road, dog leading. So far, this is normal dog owner behavior, and I expect people to ask me about Suki because she's a little bit small for a Lab, and her face is a slightly different shape.

"What kind of dog is that?"

"A Border Lab."

"A what?"

"A Border Lab." I say it slower because I worry that I'm not enunciating.

"A what?"

"Labrador. A Border..."

"That's a pit bull. You're a liar." Until the moment that she calls me a liar, I was assuming that I was having a normal conversation with a sane person.

The conversation gets complicated at that point, because we're talking over each other a little. She continues to assert that I am a liar, and that if that dog gets off the leash or bites her that she will sue me. I ask her if she is intoxicated, and if I might have to call for a D&D (drunk and disorderly). She suggests to me that she might call her lawyer. Judging from her behavior, it seems plausible that she both has a lawyer and has his number memorized. At some point, her belligerence puts her face in the proximity of mine, and I mentally check the way that she is standing against the way that I am standing. I am worried that she will decide to kick me in the crotch. I am worried that I will not show proper restraint. Since yelling may still be covered by the First Amendment I opt for standing to my full height in front of her and saying:


She complies, punctuated with a disgusted "Fine". She mutters something else about a lawyer, and yells back to me to ask if I thought she was stupid.

"No, I think you're intoxicated."

Before she is out of visual range, but well past earshot, I catch one of the other neighbors out walking his dog, an old retired guy. I ask him if he had seen that woman walking that dog before, and he said that he had not, and he mentioned that she was muttering to herself the whole time about "Doesn't he know that thing is dangerous?"

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