Feeding the Dogs

First, allow me to clarify for the metaphorical mind:

  1. I adore it.
  2. Sometimes, metaphors may be misconstrued or imposed where there are none. This is extremely rare in the case of WaughPaper, see #1.
  3. In this case, my use of the word “dog” is in no way meant to be a metaphor for a human being. I will never intentionally demean any human that way, not that dogs are so bad. They do all go to heaven, and in some cultures, they are revered. And the Chinese have an entire year named after them (this year, in fact). But in other cultures, to refer to someone as a dog would be derision, an insult, and it is thus in the Bible. So, I would not do it and am not doing it. In this post, dog means actual Canis lupus familiaris.

That clarification being understood, there is a principle in the following that may indeed become a metaphor for you, although it is just the way it is when I am on route Shade these days. And, henceforth I will use the preposition “in” [the] Shade, because that is also true and makes much more sense grammatically, although “on” shade is a possibility as well.

Here we go:

There are dogs on this route Shade, and they have grown accustomed, because of past practices, to receiving treats. Well, that is fine for them, that they got their goodies for a while. But, it is me now, on this route, not the person who came before me, and I am not going to feed the dogs. I have thought about it and decided today. Besides, no one but you knows I am in the Shade, anyway. They all think I am on 6773, that “damn” route, and it is a long, too long, and difficult and gnarly route.

For the past week or two in the Shade, I have driven around and approached a house, and here comes the dog, expectantly. It looks at me with these sad eyes, longing eyes, hungry eyes, wanting eyes, and I speak kindly to it, but I shall not feed it. Here is why, and bear with me.

Going back to the Bible, it says,  “Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies” (1 Corinthians 6:19-20). That means that your body is a temple and mine is a temple and so on . . . 

If I started feeding the dog, I’d need to feed them all, even the ones who do not approach with sad eyes, but with angry eyes, jumping at the fence as I approach, or pulling at the leash to get to me, trying to get something to which they have grown comfortable in expecting. Totally taken for granted, are all the treats, because they always got them, and yet they are dogs after all. I could feed them. I could buy treats, keep them in my truck, and toss one here and there, and they’d be delighted dogs for a day. But, then what about tomorrow? Ugh, here ya go fido, here is your treat. Oh, I forgot to buy more over the weekend and now I am out of your treats. Sorry. Are you still my friend if you can’t get something from me? Didn’t think so. Well, back to the temple business. If I feed the dogs, I gotta keep doing it to be fair. And, currently, I am not in a position to spend money on that sort of thing. And it’s not anything at all against the dogs, but is instead a reverence for myself, for my own body/temple, and by extension, for your temple, and so on.

If I feed these dogs, I’d ultimately be shooting myself in the foot, and I already stated elsewhere that I am not gonna do that again. I must plan carefully, so I decided to keep the canine cash for other things. And they may be disappointed in a doggish way, but they will get over it. Their memory will eventually fade, and they may greet me with simple kindness, because I am kind to them, or they may just go away. I have no idea. They might try to chew my head off, but I will keep doing my job, delivering in the Shade.

And I will not feed the dogs.

[I swear, just now, in this lobby of the building where I live for a few more days, with its wifi and people around cuz I want to be around actual people even though we are not talking I am typing and they are over there first talking about pot, and then oils, and then the Oregon Beavers winning today, DOGS ARE FIGHTING. It sounds horrible, just horrible, and reminds me why I am more a cat guy than a dog lover].

Okay, that’s all for now.

My temple is getting tired . . . Take care of yours too!


Photograph “Three friendly flowers, sideways connected” © 2018 Timothy Waugh