Tuesday, July 27, 2010

She Can't Hardly Contain Herself

Every afternoon, I take Muzzy for a short walk around the block before I feed her some dinner. It's usually pretty hot outside and there's nobody around, so I often let her walk off-leash. Lately, one of our neighbors has been out in her yard at the same time. Each time Muzzy sees this neighbor, she gallops up her, her tail spinning, as if this woman were her long-lost mama.  Muzzy soaks up some goo-goo talk then dashes back to the sidewalk, races past me, and, a few yards down, takes an enormous dump.

The first time this happened, the neighbor was amazed. She had gotten into her car and was driving past just as Muzzy was getting to work. The woman rolled down her window and said, "I didn't know I had that effect on her." Apparently it was quite a stimulating effect. I laughed it off at first. But this greet-n-poop dynamic has occurred twice in the past week. I'm getting kind of embarrassed about it. When I told the woman's daughter this story, she said, "That's okay. My mother has that effect on me, too."

The idea that certain people make other people want to poop is an old joke. In fact, I came across this anecdote in Lincoln, a biography of the U.S. President written by David Herbert Donald (Simon & Schuster, 1995). According to Donald, Lincoln liked to tell this story when there were no ladies in the room.

[Lincoln] recounted an anecdote he attributed to Colonel Ethan Allen, famed for his role in the American Revolution. Allegedly making a visit to England after the war, Allen found his hosts took great pleasure in ridiculing Americans, and George Washington in particular, and, to irritate their guest, hung a picture of the first President in the toilet. (In telling the story, Lincoln called it 'the Back House.') Allen announced that they had found a very appropriate place for the picture, because 'there is nothing that will Make an Englishman Shit so quick as the sight of Genl Washington.'"
It makes me smile to think that our sixteenth President liked to tell a story like that one, but Muzzy and I are definitely taking a new route on our afternoon walk for a while.

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