Magic Dog Poop Trick

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I have this pretty fancy trick up my sleeve or at the bottom of my pant leg. I think it could totally become a dog walking trend. I walk my boys and dog to school most days. I get pretty crotchety old-man irritated by dog poop on the sidewalk or right next to the sidewalk because that’s also a danger zone for three running boys. Or me. I typically try to carry a plastic bag for my dog’s poop. Because, inevitably, if I don’t have a bag, he will poop… two times. If you’re like me, you may not have the best memory. Or you may get easily distracted when you enter your house to grab a poop bag and accidentally may never return to find your dog’s poop. You had the best intentions, right?
Here’s a simple way that you can prevent this poop faux-pas from never happening again. Never. I guarantee it. Drum roll.
May I introduce the idea of taking off your shoe as a poop marker? Say what? That’s absurd. Yeah. Yeah. It’s a bit awkward walking the rest of the way home with one shoe on. And your neighbors or spouse may think or say, “where’s your other shoe?” But, you will not forget where your dog pooped. You will be able to walk back with a plastic poop bag, pick up your dog’s poop and then put your shoe back on.
Ba-da-bing. Ba-da-boom.
“But how did you think of this? This is amazing,” you may be thinking.
One day, my pre-coffee morning brain came up with this “poop shoe” idea when I had taken my dog for a long walk. Basically, I was in my head feeling like I needed to contribute to society more. So I decided to start picking up some of the trash everywhere.  I let my dog off of his leash to run around. I never seem to be able to go to those “clean up the creek” days so I thought I would just use a previously found mulch bag and start filling it with trash. I seized the moment. I cleaned up the creek. Well, not all the way. It was too easy to fill up the mulch bag with empty cigarette packs, 40’s, snack wrappers, etc. Littering. Ugh. Another thing that gets me ready to take my shoes off. I don’t even know what that means but it did sound serious. Don’t litter. End of story.
After I filled my trash-mulch bag, I realized I had lost my dog’s leash. Somewhere in the woods. Dang-it. Well, good thing I had my handy dandy plastic bag. I went all boy-scoutsy and tied the plastic bag to my dog’s collar and used it as a very short leash on our walk home. You’ll never guess what my dog did about five houses away from home?
He pooped.
Crap. Literally.
I couldn’t use the plastic bag that was now being used as a leash. I decided to take my shoe off to mark the poop. A committed move. I was dedicated to the cause of picking up my dog’s poop. I one-shoed my way home, took my dog off of his plastic bag leash and went back to reclaim my shoe and clean up the dog poop like a good citizen who detests stepping in dog poop.
You will most likely be surprised to learn that there was not a choir of angels in my driveway upon returning home. However, in my head, there were a lot of crotchety old folks giving me high-fives.
I’ve used the poop shoe trick several times since this first “losing the leash” occurrence. I’ve tried to persuade my husband but he would rather use those gas flags or other random items. I know he put a gas flag next to a dog poop the other day. You will have to ask him if he remembered to go back and pick up said poop. If it’s not your shoe and you’re easily distracted, chances are, that poop is going to end up making someone say, “SHIT!”
Poop Shoe Disclaimers:
*I can’t be held responsible if you have a funny neighbor that goes and gets your shoe out of their yard while you head home for a plastic bag. I do love that neighbor, though, so send them my way.
*It stinks if the ground is wet. Wet socks are the worst. One wet sock is pretty annoying. NO, actually, leaving your dog’s poop in somebody else’s yard is the worst and the most annoying.
*Why don’t you just take two plastic bags? Oh, stop, with your simple-mindedness.
*Dog diarrhea….this is a difficult subject matter. I’m not ready to talk about this yet. Please wait for a future blog post addressing this challenging situation.

Accidental Litter

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I accidentally littered. It’s embarrassing. Humiliating. It’s not what I stand for. I hate littering. I will routinely, yet awkwardly, chase trash down that I’ve dropped. Or that one of my kids has dropped. Tiny Smartie or gum wrappers. Or other absurd pieces of trash. And for the record, I classify used gum as trash. It goes in the trash can. Not on the bottom of a shoe. Or in a curious or hungry kid’s mouth. Yep. That’s happened. One of the things that irritates me the most is when I see a car driving and trash starts flying out the window. What?!!! Un-freakin’-believable. Oh. Was that Taco Bell cup junking up your car? The audacity. Who do you think is going to pick that up? I want to pull up next to them and come up with something really clever and powerful to say. But I don’t want to get road raged. So I just make a really mean face as I nod my head back and forth with a “you oughta be ashamed of yourself” kind of disappointed face. And I vent in my car. “We don’t litter….” And so on. The nerve of some people.

When I’m on a walk or bike ride and I see trash all in the banks of the creek, I get pissed for the ducks. Or turtles or frogs. Or trees or grass or anything living. Like they want to swim around in your trash. I think I’m going to get one of those trash pick-up sticks and get to work around the Indian Creek.

But I have a confession.

Yesterday, I unintentionally joined the club. My van door opened up and two precious papers flew out. Like a prison break escape kind-of-flying out. Maybe they didn’t like the less than desirable living conditions of my van. Maybe they deserved a museum type of environment. A fancy frame, a wall, and some peace and quiet. Anyhow, the Kansas winds blew those water color paintings clear across the parking lot in less than two seconds. I was faced with a bit of a dilemma as I watched the painted rainbow pictures bounce across the pavement. Should I leave my child (in front of the preschool administration) and chase after the “accidental litter” or watch as those caffeinated winds carried the two pieces of artwork north of the river. Or maybe to the Nelson? Only a slight exaggeration. I’m sure someone has found them and put them where they rightfully belong: on a refrigerator. Hopefully, it’s a nice grandma of sorts type of person and not a creeper.

Since my house is totally under control, I’m going to head out to pick up some trash. I feel like I owe it to the environment. Maybe I will try and keep my van a bit cleaner too, so it will pose less of a risk of accidentally littering. See that. I blamed my poor van. I feel like such a jerk, but I’m gonna use all my feels to save the earth or at least the Indian trails.

Where do I get one of those trash pick-up sticks? I should probably wear an orange vest too. When we drove by a federal prison last week, my seven year son casually and confidentially said, “you’ve been there before, right?” Nope. I’m pretty sure I’ve never been to federal prison, son. Let’s not go spreading that rumor to your first grade class, ok? However, if your classmates do see me picking up trash on the side of the road, you can tell them it’s an “Accidental Littering voluntary mother’s guilty conscious program” that I started. If there are any other parents who have unexpectedly lost trash due to the unfortunate combination of children opening car doors and the Midwest winds, feel free to join my non-profit organization. I’ll meet you at the creek. I’ve got garbage bags galore.  Bring a trash pick up stick. Or maybe just borrow one from the creek. It won’t mind since its for a good cause.