Friday, May 06, 2005

The REAL List

Now that my conscience is soothed, having posted my National Pet Week tribute to the dogs in yesterday's sappy-but-heartfelt poem, I can give the real list of how the dogs make a difference. Here it is:

Baxter, Elsie, and Ridge, without you ...
  • we'd have nothing to trip over when cooking dinner
  • no one would slobber over us when we come home
  • our friends could walk in the door without being "sniffed"
  • we'd have the entire sofa to ourselves--we could even stretch out; what a novel idea!
  • we might even reclaim the recliner
  • we'd enjoy a cup of coffee without our arms being nudged and our beverages sloshing
  • we'd read a book without it being bumped from our hands
  • we'd peruse the Sunday paper, arms fully extended, without being startled by a paper-thumping tail
  • we'd have no nose prints to smudge our back door or car windows
  • we'd have no land mine piles dotting the back yard
  • we'd have no toys to clean up before vacuuming, no twigs and stigs and other debris to remove before mowing the lawn, and no dog hair--mountains of dog hair--to decorate our floors
  • we wouldn't invest our life savings in lint rollers
  • we'd awaken to music or the radio or an alarm instead of to a chorus of canines
  • we could sleep in late if we wanted
  • we could go to be early--as early as we'd like
  • Snickers, the cat, could roam freely--without terror--in our home once again
  • we could keep the house clean
  • we could leave food on the counter and have it still be there upon our return
  • we could go away for a weekend without worry
  • we could stay out all day without wondering if we're gone too long
  • we could work all day without interruption
  • we could have a tidy, sterile existance of predictability and routine

But then we'd also have

  • cold feet in winter
  • higher blood pressure
  • no one to nuzzle us when we're sad
  • empty laps when we're relaxing in front of the TV
  • no one to make us giggle or smile
  • no one to stroke and pet to calm ourselves down
  • no one to help us see humor in this world
  • no one to make us pause throughout the day
  • no one to remind us to take pleasure in simple things
  • no one (in this world) who models unconditional love so well
  • no one who wiggles with delight at our return
  • no one to greet us with kangaroo-hops at the gate
  • no one who wiggles all over with excitement and pleasure
  • no one to show us what contentment and satisfaction look like
  • no one to alert us to danger (real or imagined)
  • no one to keep the cat in his place
  • no one to tell us when the postman (or UPS or FedEX...) is here
  • no one to teach us about God's sense of humor
  • no one to follow us around all day
  • no one to pre-wash the dishes in the dishwasher
  • no one to make us feel like we're the center of their worlds
  • no one to force us outside to enjoy the outdoors
  • no one to teach us about life's little pauses
  • no one to model true loyalty and faithfulness
  • no one who will remind us to play
  • no one who will calm our hearts and help us forget the troubles of the day

The list could go on and on...

It's a trade-off, I'll admit, but it's one I'd make again in a heartbeat.

'Til next time,

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