You know how sometimes, you are just having the very worst day?
That's what I was having on Friday. Just an all-around terrible, no-good day.
And to cap off this day, after work I was on the phone with my plumber (remember that basement tale of woe?) while I was walking Spencer. My mind was a little less on Spencer and a little more on my financial situation as my plumber told me __________________________ (censored to ensure limited whining on the internet).
I hung up the phone and started to trudge back up the street when a man ran out of his house, across the street, with a plastic bag in hand and yelled at me, "Hey, do you need a bag to clean up your dog's shit?"*
At this point, I was just confused. "No thanks," I said. "I have a bag." I held it up as proof.
"So aren't you going to clean up your dog's shit?"
I started getting angry. "He hasn't gone yet," I replied waspishly.
"I just watched him, it's right over there," he said, pointing to a little spot on the grass strip next to the sidewalk.
"Oh," I said, feeling a bit stupid. So I cleaned up Spencer's poop while the Poop Warden glowered at me.
Now here's the thing. I'm not going to make any excuses -- I should have been paying more attention to my dog, given he was bound to go at some point on our walk.
But folks, let's all take a lesson from the Parable of The Poop Warden. When you notice someone doing something dumb, perhaps a gentle prompting is all they need. "Excuse me, miss, but I notice your dog left you a little gift over there while you were on the phone, and I think you missed it" goes a long way in not having a flaming bag of refuse left on your porch one unsuspecting evening.**
* I told this story to Diego later, all in a huff, and ended with, "And doesn't he know I'm a damn lady? He doesn't get to use that sort of opprobrious language with me like I'm some kind of construction worker."
Diego was amused, and said the bigger issue is that good-mannered people aren't vulgar toward strangers, which I suppose is also a valid opinion.
** That probably won't happen.
But I hope the Poop Warden sleeps with one eye open all the same.