Last night I spent 4 hours at the park between Mr. T's soccer game (tied) and Mr. G's coach pitch game (tied). (Poor Mr. B had to hitch a ride to his scrimmage in another town since Mr. D was coaching. He's still making me feel guilty about that.) The winds were gusting at a balmy 37 MPH and I tethered myself to the turf to watch the excitement. Fortunately I wasn't blinking the sand from the baseball infield out of my eyes the entire night, just for half of it.
At the soccer game the one lady brought her extremely hostile dog like she always does. What's with the little dogs being so obnoxiously loud and aggressive? It's like the canine version of Short Man's Disease--they're always jonesing for a fight, talking big and getting in your face. Our 60-pound mutt, on the other hand, barks once approximately every 85 days. He's passive and only lunges towards food or cars. Anyway, I clung to my lawn chair while Yippy growled and complained a few feet to my right, lunging towards the field, tenuously held back by a leash. Why do people insist on bringing animals like that out in public? This dog's been on the sidelines for years, so it's obvious that this method of socialization isn't getting anywhere. (Yes, I confess to indulging in a few fantasies, like Jax eating Yippy in one bite, or a bald eagle swooping down to eat Yippy in one bite. Or me stepping on Yippy, silencing him forever. Shut up. Even the most devout dog lover would agree that this beast has no redeeming quality. I speculate this dog's half AM talk radio host and half demon.)
I digress. Yippy annoyed me but the barn swallows were pure entertainment. Like Blue Angels, they swooped and divebombed the turf, eating bugs and demonstrating how aerodynamic they could be in 37 MPH winds. I envied them while I spat strands of hair out of my mouth.
Then I noticed a couple of girls approaching the game to my left. One cradled something in her arms--a baby? I wondered... But it looked pretty small to be a baby. And no one in their right mind would bring a 5 pound preemie out in this wind without a blanket.
Two of the skinniest legs and feet stuck straight up and then I wondered if the girl wasn't carrying one of those practice babies they give you in school to scare kids straight about using birth control and abstinence. But no, the legs seemed to move. Or get tossed around by the wind. A couple of other people approached to look at what the girl cradled in her arms--their response assured me that whatever it was, it was alive. No one would spend that much time admiring a baby doll.
Wait a minute! It occurred to me that this girl might have a pet monkey. That would explain the size and the freakishly thin legs and long toes. A pet monkey--that would be something to see!
I was too far away to get a clear view from my spot where I'd staked myself in the grass, so I leaned back and pretended to stretch. Still couldn't see it very well so I uprooted myself and took a few casual paces around my lawn chair (which blew over the second I stood up).
I shit you not, I nearly fell over when I realized what the girl had brought to the soccer game (and not because a gust of 47 MPH directed it's full impact at me). She set it down on the ground and sat next to it, petting it's back.
Just when I thought I'd seen it all. That girl had brought a pet chicken to the soccer game.
Thank goodness she was sitting upwind of Yippy. I know how Jax would've behaved, catching a whiff of a chicken dinner. I think he'd even bark to say, "Pass the mashed potatoes."
You bet I gave Jax an extra scoop of kibble when I came home after last night's games--just to our good dog some extra appreciation.