I’ll take potpourri for $400, alex…

A: The only tree planted between the sidewalk and the curb in my neighborhood.

Q: What is where I can’t let Miller pee anymore?

So picture, if you will, it’s roughly 6am on a brisk Wednesday morning in late April. I’m walking Miller, as I do every morning, fully enjoying the crisp, cool air and the fact that we’ve finally reached the point where it’s daylight when I’m walking the dog. . .it’s my favorite time of day, one of the few moments I really feel like I have to myself, for myself (well, and for the dog). Miller’s taking care of business, relieving himself on a tree, as is common for male dogs. . .out pops this woman from her front door, in a long nightgown and robe and she says to me “You can’t let your dog pee there”. I’m kind of in my early morning fog, peacefully walking along and I don’t hear her at first. “What?” I say to her. “You can’t let your dog pee there. Other dogs pee there now.” To which I reply “My dog didn’t start this trend.” At this point, I’m so befuddled by the fact that she’s really having this conversation with me at 6 in the morning, I walk off, continuing to rationalize out loud why, exactly, I can’t let my dog pee on a tree.

So apparently Miller is solely responsible for the demise of this tree, for causing this one tree, the only item in my neighborhood planted between the sidewalk and the curb, to become a canine urinal. This tree has been there for a few years now, it’s pretty well established and appears to be doing just fine for itself. In my honest and humble dog walking opinion, if you plant something, sit something, leave something on the curb, in that roughly two-foot wide grassy area between the sidewalk and the street, you’re asking for a dog to pee on it. I don’t let Miller pee on the motorcycle under cover on the next street up because, well, it’s a motorcycle cover. .. not a tree. dogs pee on trees. and hydrants. and couches left curbside. I consider myself a considerate dog owner. I always pick up after my dog, I don’t let him go into people’s yards and pee on flowers and shrubbery if I can help it. I don’t let him jump on people, except for those with whom he’s really familiar. And now, I’m apparently going to have to make sure he doesn’t pee on this one tree. The lunacy of this entire situation is overwhelming to me right now. This crazy woman messed with the sanctuary of my morning stroll, causing me mental anguish and making me want to go leave a bag of dog poop on her doorstep (which I would never do). The tree isn’t even hers. It’s her neighbors’.

Small stuff people. Don’t sweat it. Seriously.



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