Negotiating with Cookies – Fleegle’s Gods

I’m standing in the kitchen, contemplating which chores to do first, dishes or mopping the floor, when Fleegle pops through the dog door, his fur dripping from the rain, his paws black with mud.

Out of the blue, he asks, “How many gods do you believe in?”

“Me personally or humankind?”

“You. I don’t know this humankind guy.”

“Do you even know what God is?”

“Of course I do. He spells his name the same as dog, which we both know is no coincidence. For instance, how many guys have you known named Dick who turned out to be just that?”

“Or dogs nicknamed Stinky Butt who turn out to be stinky?”

“Hey, that’s not nice.”

“Tell that to Dick.”

“I’m just saying that there’s a good likelihood that your People God is a dog.” He paws at the ever present tennis ball on the floor next to him. “Do you believe in the Ball God?”

“Would that be as in the Stick God?”

“I think they’re brothers.”

“Does that make a game of stick ball a sort of family feud?”

“I see you don’t take me seriously and need proof of these gods. Okay, do you believe in the Mud God?”

“Oh yes, that one I do. I see proof of that god everywhere,” I say, giving Fleegle’s dirty paws a long look. “Let me ask you, do you believe in the Cat God?”

“The what? Cat and tack are spelled the same. When was the last time you sat on a tack?”

“Maybe third grade.”

“That’s because I keep the yard clear of cats.”

“So there’s no Cat God?”

“No. A minor deity at best.”

“What about a Poop God?”

Fleegle laughs. “Oh yes, he’s a fairly major god in the pantheon of dog deities. We make offerings to him every day, oftentimes several times a day, but humankind must worship him even more because you follow us around and steal our offerings and claim them as your own by wrapping them up in pretty little blue bags. But you can’t fool the Poop God. He knows from whom the offerings come.” Fleegle sits and drags his butt on the ground a couple feet.

“What are you doing?”

“Making a point.”

“Do you believe in the Mop God?”

“Ha. Not a lot of followers of him around here. I think the Mud God converted all of them.”

“What about the Stink God?”

“No such thing. You must mean the Scent God. Nothing truly stinks. The scent of a rose to one might be the scent of a–”

“Poop to another.”

“Yes, you got it. Personally, I find poop much more interesting smelling than a rose, unless the rose has been peed on.”

I get up to leave, now know what chores I need to do first.

“Where are you going?” he asks.

“To the shrine closet of the Mop God.”

“The Mud God isn’t going to like that.”


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