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12:29 p.m. - 2001-09-25

TALKING DOUGHNUTS AND BAD BAD DOGS

I just paid a visit to my old job.

The sales manager from there called me this morning wanting to know if I wanted some backstage passes to this concert that's taking place Friday night here in town.

It's actually a festival with two stages and a bunch of entertainers on each stage. It's basically jazz and blues. It's an annual thing, I've been before but it'd be kinda tough dragging Andy down there.

So I turned her down and she said if I could think of anyone who'd want them to give her a call back.

I then thought of our production manager here...my good buddy Jarrod, the world's whitest rap fan.

Jarrod had never heard of the festival but said he's love to go.

So I went over to the paper to pick up the passes during lunch.

As soon as I walked in the door, they offered me a doughnut from the local bakery.

Uh huh.

Is there STILL any wonder how I got diabetes? I worked at this place for NINE FREAKIN' YEARS! Doughnuts and candy bars were handed out like wafers and grape juice at church.

I turned down the doughnut politely. I didn't even WANT the doughnut. That was a good sign. I looked at the box of doughnuts, they looked nice...chocolate covered creamy pastries...but nowhere in my psyche did a little voice pop up and say "Tempt fate! Tempt fate!"

That was a big hump for me...staring a doughnut in the hole and saying "I do not need you."

...Then again...I had just eaten my lunch of a chicken pita. I wasn't even hungry. So...you know...I'm no hero or anything.

I took aside the secretary Jill there and told her that I had been diagnosed with diabetes. She almost cried. Mainly because she weighs more than I do.

She wanted to know the symptoms and I reeled off some of them.

She had every one of them too.

I told her to go to the doctor. She said she was scared to and I insisted that she go because she should do it for her family. Which...her family are a buncha no-good drug addicted thieves...but still. Do it for yourself then.

So she said she might. I assured her that on this diet, I'm never hungry (I'm really not...every now and then I'm a bit hungry but never starving) and it's actually good food ... once you get past the hurdle that you will NEVER EAT SWEETS AGAAAAAAAAAIN.

I dunno if she's going to go or not. I hope she does.

ANNNNNND...all of you reading this...if you're clearly overweight and haven't been to a doctor recently...I URGE you to go and have yourself checked out. Take it from me...I was one scared mofo to go...but I was scared of cancer or heart disease. As I've stated in the past...I smoked pot for 20 years like a fiend. I smoked so much, Cheech and Chong couldn't hang with me. So it's amazing that I don't have anything worse than diabetes.

...Speaking of which...I will NEVER smoke pot again because of this. If you smoke and have diabetes, you may as well be injecting pure sugar cane into your blood stream.

I haven't smoked in months anyway and had pretty much resigned myself to the fact that I was done with it for good. But I'm just saying...

Anyway...for your old Uncle Bob...get yourself checked out if you know in your heart that you should.

Oh...to finish my story...I'm giving these backstage passes to this guy for Friday night and then I remember...his last day at work is Friday. So on Monday, he won't be in here telling me how great the show was.

That sucks.

I guess.


I did something last night that I'm pretty ashamed of.

First off, I blame it on sugar withdrawals. I've been told by numerous sources, including the doctor, that I could suffer from mood swings, irritability, and swollen breasts while detoxing off of my lifelong sugar buzz.

I lost my temper last night.

Keep in mind...I don't lose my temper ever. I'm a very even keeled guy. My wife would tell you, we have NEVER had a fight that made me yell.

Never.

And keep in mind...I LOVE my family. My wife, my boy...

...And yes...even my dog. Even if she's getting on my every last nerve.

When we put Andy in his high chair and feed him, Maggie the dog stays right there at his side, ready at a moment's notice to catch any food he drops and scarf it down.

She's really bad about it. REALLY bad. It gets to the point where we can't feed Andy because Maggie's tries to intercept the food.

So I decided last night to lock her outside in the back yard until Andy was through eating. Immediately, she comes in through her doggie door, into the utility room and starts scratching at the door that has her locked out.

Susie yells at the dog "QUIT SCRATCHING!"

Unfortunately, the dog's grasp of the English language is fairly limited and she has no earthly idea what this means. So she keeps scratching.

Susie glares at me and says "I DON'T want that door all scratched up."

So what's a guy to do?

I get up, walk to the door and tell Maggie, point blank...if you interfere with Andy's feeding in any way ... I'm beating you.

I let her in the kitchen. She immediately goes to Andy's high chair, sits and stares at his hands, WAITING for him to drop something.

I understand it's a game. But the dog's NOT hungry. She's just a glutton.

At one point, Andy has a small peanut butter sandwich in his hand. He's lazily eating it and ...I'm not sure if all kids do this ... but he's just kinda swinging it around.

His hand goes to the edge of the high chair.

In one gulp, Maggie snatches the sandwich and swallows it.

Alright.

This INFURIATED me.

Andy's bemused. He's just staring at his hand like ...WTF???

I get up out of my chair and try to pull Maggie by the collar outside.

She yelps loudly.

This is a new sound to Andy. He's never heard the dog cry.

This makes Andy cry hysterically. I haven't seen the kid cry like this since he was born.

Maggie's not budging.

So I slap her on the butt and yell at her.

Four times.

Hard.

It left my hand stinging anyway.

She cowered down after the first slap and hit the floor.

That made me madder so I hit her again and again, yelling "BAD DOG!! BAD BAD DOG!!!".

On the fourth slap, she raised up and yelled at me.

There's no other way to put it. She was sitting down, stared straight into her eyes, opened her mouth and issued the dog equivalent of "ENOUGH ALREADY!!"

I felt like shit immediately.

Andy was crying, the dog was in shock, Susie just saw something she hadn't seen out of me in 15 years and I had no explanation for my actions other than "I miss my Nestle's Crunch Bars".

Susie got Andy out of his high chair and rocked him until he stopped crying. Maggie went out to the front room and laid down away from me.

I sat there and just felt. Like. Shit.

Andy looked at me with fear in his eyes and I wanted to assure him that what just happened will most likely never happen again. But how do you tell a 10-month old that just watched his dad beat his best friend up that it was an isolated circumstance?

I called Maggie back to the den and petted her and let her know I was sorry. I think she was still a bit shell shocked...she allowed herself to be petted, but she was a bit on edge, waiting to see if I was going to freak out again.

Once Andy calmed down, I got on the floor and we played a bit and blew on each other's tummies which makes us both laugh.

Susie took it all in stride after it was over. She knew I was tense and that the dog had been getting on both of our nerves.

And please...no emails on this. I know what I did was wrong and I feel bad enough as it is.

So tonight, when it's Andy's time to eat, Maggie's going outside once again.

But this time, for the sake of everyone's sanity...she's STAYING out.

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