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Eugene Weekly : Living Out : 4.22.10




Do-Do the Right Thing

Calling attention to crap should be enough

By Sally Sheklow

I’ve started walking to lower my blood pressure. I needed to get moving because — you might be as surprised to learn as I was — the dash from the couch to the fridge during commercials is not enough.

My daily walk through my neighborhood gives me a free hour to relax my mind while I get my heart pumping, lower my BP and develop an endlessly fascinating array of  blisters. This is my time to turn off my critical brain, work out my bod and observe the wonders of the world around me.

Today I saw a chubby beagle squat on a busy street corner with a woman at the other end of the leash who did not appear at all poised to pick up the poo. Shocked and appalled, I called out to her, “You ARE going to pick that up, aren’t you?” Silly me, still believing that calling attention to someone’s error is all it takes to get them to clean up their act. 

The beagle woman said something I couldn’t hear over the noisy morning traffic, then made palm circles in sort of a smoothing gesture by way of explanation. Like what? Her dog spreads it evenly, so it’s no problem? Or maybe “Hocus pocus, you saw nothing.”

Just then the light changed, and I had to keep walking. 

Not five minutes later some guy taking a big lab on a morning constitutional strolls right past his dog’s steaming pile. Don’t people know that leaving your dog’s doodie along the sidewalk isn’t neighborly? 

It makes me appreciate all the responsible people who bring dog-do bags when they walk their pooches. I always did back when I had a dog. It’s hard to cut people slack once you’ve done your time carrying a loaded turd tote.

Picking up after your dog is the right thing to do. Of course that doesn’t mean everyone’s going to do it. 

Here you have President Obama telling the nation that overturning Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, in no uncertain terms, is the right thing to do. Bigwigs like the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen, Defense Secretary Robert Gates and even General Colin Powell agree.

Despite our top brass confirming that ending DADT is the right thing to do, we still haven’t done it. And now here comes the Party of No defending the policy with all the tired old arguments about the danger of showering with gay people. We’ll send our troops to face roadside bombs, no biggie, but don’t drop that soap! What a load of crap they’re dumping. 

This is not good for my blood pressure. I’m walking to take time out from worrying. I can’t get all stressed out over stuff like this. Obama promised to undo Don’t Ask Don’t Tell this year, and the military will come around because they need us more than they hate us. Dog owners will either scoop or not — I can’t be the poop police. This is my time. I refuse to ruin my BP over BMs.

Sally Sheklow has been a part of the Eugene community since 1972 and is a member of the WYMPROV! comedy troupe. Her column, which began at EW in 1999, also runs in several other newspapers and magazines around the country and Down Under.