About You and Your Dog

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Mr. Cranky has really stepped in it this time. Not bike lanes or old buildings or racial politics. I am talking about dog shit, and I don't mean s***, doo-doo, poop, excrement, or mess. The right word matters sometimes.

The scene of the crime was the Overton Park playing field, which has over the years become an unofficial dog park. I was walking toward Rainbow Lake when I got distracted by — what else? — a dog running toward me, stepped carelessly, and, bingo.

This is not the crime of the century. That would be when your dog shits in my yard and you don't clean it up. And I admit I once owned large dogs that ran free when they escaped or I let them off the leash.

But times change. We used to have unprotected sex with strangers, smoke unfiltered Camels in indoor public places, drive without seatbelts, and double-size our fries.

WE ARE LIVING IN A CIVILIZATION HERE PEOPLE!!!!!!

Dog parks like the ones at Shelby Farms and behind the board of education are wonderful things. So are bags and the stations that provide them in places like the Bluffwalk and Greenbelt Park, although plastic bags do present another set of problems. Otherwise public playing fields like the one at Overton Park become practically useless for Ultimate, catch, flag football, or walking unless you don't mind close encounters with dog shit.

So clean up. Don't shout "it's ok, he's friendly" or "Gee, he's never been a fighter/biter before" or pretend you didn't see it. Walk over and bag it. Or go to a dog park. Which the Overton Park Conservancy should put on its "to do" list.

I feel better now, and am going to clean my shoe.

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