Adopting a dog is proving to be harder than getting pregnant as a 40 year old lesbian. Here in Boston people will cut you down in order to beat you to the small dog that's up for adoption. They'll run you off the road, force your car into a ditch, elbow you in the ribs.
"It's my bichon poodle mix, mine!"
I'm just trying to rescue a damn dog. Trying to avoid a puppy mill. But it's like the vitamin aisle at Whole Foods where a woman once literally shoved me out of the way to get to the wheat-free/soy-free/dairy-free/all vegan multi-vitamins: do-gooders out for bear, or dog, as the case may be.
A friend of mine used the phrase "fascist hippies" to describe a family we knew who lived in this huge rambling Victorian house in a funkadelic part of town. One was an artist, the other some kind of world-saver. Their two kids ran naked around the house, pooped in the back yard, nursed until they were seventeen. But dinners were communal damnit and if you weren't there on time or didn't take your clothes off in the hot tub you were berated.
These are the vegetarians we are up against in this dog rescue mission, well-meaning liberals in tattered old Volvos who opted out of the rat race but are still racing. Granted every day we don't find a dog is one more day without one which is fine by me.
Meanwhile, Bets has been practicing her lines for the kindergarten play which is about the cutest thing in the world. She's as excited by the prospect of being on stage in a costume as she is about walking around the house saying, "I have to practice my lines."
She's invited Faith and I of course and Lucy and Phoebe. We all went to the circus together yesterday. What is more unlikely: a man on stilts being catapulted into the air onto the shoulders of another man, or a woman and her ex-partner, her girlfriend, and all their children sharing cotton candy?
The fascist hippies would have approved. They would have insisted we embrace and then take our clothes off and jump in a hot tub. Damnit.
The dog of my dreams likely lives in Arkansas. There's a freedom train (no offense, no offense) carrying stray dogs from Arkansas to New England. Actually it's a bus. And it's our only hope. You pick a dog online from just a few questions asked of its foster family and then it's put in a crate to journey several days to New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, or New Hampshire. At each stop someone who has been trying to adopt a dog in the northeast but has not been able to because every time they get to the shelter all that's left are ferrets, rats, and pit bulls that bark loudly enough to rattle the fillings in their teeth, stand waiting, groovy leather-free leashes in hand. Dog is released and hopefully not too traumatized by its journey. Family takes dog home. And then everyone takes off their clothes and jumps into a hot tub.
Something about the whole process makes me want to eat red meat, let the water run while I brush, ask for plastic instead of paper or a reusable bag. It makes me want to drop cash at a breeder so I can bring a puppy home for my child already.
Oh but I won't.
I'll adopt a dog for crying out loud. Not because I'm a fascist hippy. But because I need a dog who is housebroken.
But I'll take the kudos. A girl's got to wrap herself in something when she's naked in a hot tub.