When the average person reaches into his or her pocket, out comes a mitten, or some loose change, or maybe a set of keys that was assumed lost forever. I, however, am not your average person. I’m not sure whether that means I am below average, or above average, of course. But if what one finds in their jacket pocket is any measure of one’s normalcy, I’m way, way, way off the charts.
Because I found poop in my pocket.
It happened when my husband and I were taking our dog for a walk two nights ago. I love walking. I could probably walk across the country, if it weren’t for the fact it would mean me missing a full season of The Real Housewives of… whatever. Walking is a cure-all for me, a way of shutting off the parts of my mind that are bugging me and get back down to the basics. I will walk in rain, I will walk in snow. I will walk in the scorching heat. For there is nothing more glorious to me that the feel of my feet against pavement.
So, it was with great pleasure that we slipped on our jackets, snapped on the dog’s leash, and set out into the moonlit night of the Florida community in which we are vacationing right now while my home town of New York shudders under the frosty chill of an arctic storm front. It was a perfect night. We were talking about deep things, enjoying the twinkling stars dangling above our heads, and watching our puppy, an endearingly curious, happy-go-lucky rescue, romp around the street exploring everything with his nose. A whispering tropical breeze sifted through the palm trees along the streets, making the most awesome rustling sound. Sigh. I was in heaven.
Until I reached into my pocket and pulled out poop.
To be clear, what my hand was suddenly clutching wasn’t poop in standard poop form. It was poop in a baggie. One of those fold-down sandwich baggies you can buy a box of 500 for at Walmart for a $1. The kind of baggie lots of responsible dog owners use to pick up after their dogs because they are small, compact, and do the job.
“There’s poop in my pocket!” I exclaimed to Tommy, who was just as confused as I was by the discovery.
I held out the baggie in the palm of my hand as evidence. The poop tucked inside it was room temperature: not too cold, not too hot. And oddly, scentless.
“Why the hell do you have poop in your pocket?” was his rather predictable response.
Well, I couldn’t for the life of me think of an explanation. And yet, when one finds a bag of poop in one’s pocket, an explanation is rather mandatory.
“Is it Sumter’s?” Tommy asked, nodding to the bag of poop and then to the puppy.
Well, I wasn’t going to run a DNA test or anything, but yes, based on the recognizable baggie, and the general size and texture of the poop, it seemed possible that the poop was from our dog.
“Why did you put it in there then?” Tommy asked with a shrug, as if this was the eightieth time I’d found poop in my pocket.
But I didn’t. Why in hell would I put poop, my dog’s, or any other dog’s for that matter, in my pocket? What did I possibly have to gain from doing such a thing?
“Maybe you put it in there so you wouldn’t have to carry it…” Tommy offered up distractedly just as Sumter took a squat and pooped in the street.
No, I positively did NOT put the poop in my pocket. Granted, had I done so, it would have been excusable. Unlike in Manhattan, where one need walk no more than one block in either direction to find a trash receptacle, out here in the suburbs you sort of have to hustle for a while to find a public trash can. Still though, I’ve been picking up dog poop for nearly all my life now. I know how to carry a baggie, even if it’s for miles. And I sure as hell know not to put poop in my pocket.
So why the hell was there poop in my pocket?!?!?
I pulled out a clean baggie from the baggie holder attached to Sumter’s leash and picked up Sumter’s poop. Great. Now I was holding TWO bags of poop. It took more than a few glares from me for Tommy to figure out the obvious. Eventually he got around to offering to hold the new bag of poop. Which left me still dealing with the mystery of the poop.
Whether the poop belonged to my next of kin or not, the question remained: how did it get in my pocket? Had a stranger slipped the poop inside my pocket when I wasn’t looking? Was there a politically motivated poop pocketing cabal forming in my midst? I tried not to panic, but the varying unknowns of my situation was disturbing to say the least. For the remainder of our walk I tried to talk about non-related poop things. History. Literature. The series finale of “The Sons of Anarchy.” No matter what I did, though, poop kept permeating my thoughts.Eventually, I had to do what any smart woman who finds poop in her pocket does. I took a lesson from the poop. Yes, yes, there was most certainly a message in this cosmic poop delivery.
There are many mysteries in the world. Who built Stone Henge? Where is the Loch Ness Monster? Why can’t a human being swallow a gallon of milk in one sitting? We may never know the answers to such important questions. Just as I may never know how the poop in my pocket came to be. The question is, does it matter?
© Copyright 2015 Alison, All rights Reserved. Written For: Alison Grambs