Listen to me read this post with bonus content on The Thought and Other Absurdities Podcast below and most places you find podcasts. Please take a moment to follow, like, or subscribe wherever you listen.
In this life, there exist moments so filled with kismet and wonder that the cynicism life has inflicted upon us is completely forgotten. Precious, brief, fleeting moments that allow you, even if only for a passing glimpse, to believe in the divine magic of the universe or some significance in planetary alignment. Perfect, unexpected moments that are perfectly outside of your control, perfectly unattainable by any means other than fate, luck, or happy coincidence. Moments when the Earth and all of its inhabitants settle away from their own orbits and turn to spin steadily around only you at the center of all of the universe.
I believed I happened upon a prelude to one of these moments today. In my soul, I felt that what I saw was so brilliantly comedic, poetic, and juxtapositioned that it could only be begging for its majesty to be shared with my family to complete the masterpiece with mutual, utter appreciation amongst myself and my closest loved ones. I knew, deep in my being, that the act of bestowing my fortunate finding would lead to one of these magical, communal moments, such as I’ve described here to such great lengths.
When I picked up the dog excrement and saw a solitary googly eye that had been passed with it by our 5-year-old precocious Coonhound, Cooper, I felt the surge of merriment that demanded to be shared. It was a certainty that Cooper’s turd, which now resembled a very unattractive, one-eyed children’s toy, would be a beacon of hilarity for each member of my small and easily-amused-by-potty-humor family.
I ran to the sliding glass door on our back patio, full of glee for my discovered treasure. I rapped my gloved knuckles against the pane for their attention, the excitement building in my chest for what was clearly going to be grounds for belly laughs and floor-rolling, side-clenching guffawary.
I waited for what seemed like centuries for them to come close enough to admire this phenomenal fortune of funny. Their eyes inspected the contents of my pink, rubberized gardening glove. Then their attention panned away from the sun-hardened piece of googly-eyed poop to meet my eyes. Their faces, perfectly opposite mine in spatial relation and mood, spun my understanding of the universe back to its original downward-sloping track. They had no merriment, no glee. In fact, the overriding emoted experience they were sharing could only be described as anger and disgust. These weren’t the faces of the people I knew would just simply die having seen such a sight. No, these were the faces of humans considering the disowning of their own flesh and blood.
How could this be, I thought. This is humorous! I understand comedy, irony, fun… don’t I?
“Yeah,” the mother of our only child snorted, “I told you, he ate her pipe cleaner spider that we made the other day. That’s one of its eyes!”
Devastation takes many forms. This day, it was a middle-aged, obliviously monstrous man holding a googly-eyed doggy doo-doo with his pink-gloved hand and standing on a back patio, begging his family to chuckle.
Our three-year-old shot a dirty look through the glass and walked away in a huff, leaving me with only the poo and my damning thoughts.
Poop jokes are almost always funny, I thought to myself, but jokes about dog-devoured, holiday craft projects made by a three-year-old are always off-limits.
Some things you just don’t joke about.
. . .
Coop “The Poop” Newcomer
AKA Puffball and Pipe Cleaner Spider Eater
With his best bud, Ariella.
I think she’ll forgive us both.