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My name is Liz. I need direction. I overuse commas. My house is a mess, my hair needs a trim and I have no marketable skills: It’s fun here, you’ll see!

Got a question, comment, proposal of marriage? Great! Email me at liz@theproductivecough.com

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Got a question, comment, proposal of marriage? Great! Email me at liz@theproductivecough.com

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April 7th, 2015

The Dog Park

Now that I have Ira, I spend a great deal of time trying to make him tired. Because he is a puppy, which means that most of the time, he is flying around the room with his mouth open, destroying my furniture, my peace of mind and my relationships.

Thank god for the dog park.

There, I can let Ira off his leash and he can run, wrestle and frolic to his heart’s content. And also hump everyone. Because my dog is basically a sex offender. But, it’s dogs, so who cares, right? I mean, what goes around comes around. One minute Ira is going to town on a pitbull puppy, the next minute that same puppy has my dog pinned down and is humping his face. Isn’t that fun?

I’m the kind of person that sees that happening and just goes, “Yup.” Because, my dog doesn’t have any testicles and he isn’t hurting anyone. And the dog park is essentially just ancient Rome for our pets, so let ’em get their energy out. Better the dogs hump each other than your boss’ wife when she comes over for pot roast and Yahtzee, right?

Well, not everyone feels that way. Younger, sorority-type women in particular are very distressed by this behavior, I have noticed. Mostly, they are ashamed if their dog is the one unabashedly humping all other parties. They must believe that, somehow, their dogs are a direct reflection of themselves. Which is fun, because, once Karen is satisfied that Sprinkles will now refrain from humping that corgi, Sprinkles squats over a patch of clover and takes a steaming dump. Sigma Kappa represent!

But Uptight Sorority Girl is just one of the many people you’ll find at the dog park. There is also Texting Guy, who lets his girlfriend’s dog off the leash and just texts the receptionist from his office for an hour, not paying attention to the fact that his dog is stealing and destroying other dog’s toys and is actually urinating on people’s shoes.

Another common visitor is Chatty Older Couple. I find them pleasant in short bursts. They want to know EVERY SINGLE THING about your dog, and then will tell you EVERY SINGLE THING about their dog… and then MORE THINGS about their dog. More things than you could possibly imagine there would be. Like what kind of flea medication caused the worse skin reaction and where he likes to sit on the couch. Plus then they’ll start spoiling the end of this season of House of Cards, somehow.

A personal favorite of mine is the Guy Who Doesn’t Really Own That Dog. He is there to meet girls. And by “meet girls,” I mean “dismantle them in his windowless motorhome.” He is easily recognized by the fact that he is holding a white, fluffy dog over whom he has ZERO control. He isn’t even sure of the dog’s name (P.S., it’s Princess), and at a certain point gives up calling for it and just chases it around like it has his wallet. Once he has successfully corralled the dog he “borrowed” from his sister, he finds a spot on the centermost bench and holds onto it for dear life. There, he strokes the squirming dog and leers at every female in the park from behind his large, outdated sunglasses that he bought from the gas station. If you walk past him, he will almost always say, in a low voice, “What’s up.” Perhaps I am the only one who feels this way, but, when I am covered in dog slobber and mud and holding a bag full of poop, I am not super inclined to be very receptive to flirtatious attention. Especially from someone who looks like a police sketch.

And yet, for all the deeply strange people at the dog park, there are also a bunch of really great ones, so I’ve been finding myself going there more and more, not just for Ira’s wellbeing, but for mine. There is something sort of zen about standing in a field, watching Ira tear ass after a poodle for an hour. Plus– and this is the entire point of the excursion– it makes him tired enough to sleep. For just about the entire car ride home. After which he becomes an absolute toothy nightmare again.
Ira is a ToothBeast

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