I plop on the living room couch and I’m happily melding with it after a long day on my feet, when Fleegle walks in the room dragging my leash.
“Come on, Raud, I’m taking you for a walk before you get immersed in that talking head show on television.”
“You mean the news.”
“News, schmooze, I’ve seen better improv at the dog park.”
“They’re not making it up.”
“They tell you something bad everyday and nothing ever gets better, how can they not be making that up? They’re reading something someone else wrote. It’s second hand. If they’re not making it up, they’re playing that operator game you and your friends play at parties where the first friend says to the second friend, ‘I’m a lazy sod who’s too stupid to work,’ and by the time it gets to the last friend it’s, ‘I’m a big cod hovering the poop.’” He drops the leash in my lap. “Get up. Let’s go walk.”
“In a minute. Let me rest my bones first.”
“What bones? Where?”
“No bones, just a figure of speech,” I say and close my eyes.
“Like your talking heads,” Fleegle says as the clicking of his nails recedes from the room, but moments later a curious goobering sound in the other room triggers that sixth sense I’ve developed living with a Labrador that alerts me to something being goobered that shouldn’t be. I get up to find Fleegle’s mouth busy with my cell phone. It beeps away as he dials with his teeth.
“What are you doing?”
“Calling my back up walker.”
“And who might that be?”
“My girlfriend. Could you put Brooke’s number on speed dial? Your phone will last longer if you do.”
“Give me that,” I say and take the phone out of his mouth. Amazingly, it’s ringing. I hang up and slip it in my pocket. “All right, let’s go for a walk.”
Moments later my phone rings. It’s Brooke. I answer, “Hi.”
“Hi, did you just call me?”
I look at Fleegle. “Actually, my ass dialed you.”
Fleegle glares at me. “Hey, I’m not your donkey. And tell Brooke that if she brings pot-stickers, I’ll wait and walk the both of you.”