Our current morning routine with me waking up about an hour before Lance. This gives me time aplenty to walk the dog, feed the pets, make myself breakfast and catch up on overnight tweets. When 6:20 rolls around, I head into the bedroom to begin Lance’s De-Slumber Process:
Me: “Honey, it’s 6:20.”
Me: “I’ll come back in 10 minutes?”
Inexplicably, we both think that if we start pulling Lance out of Dreamland 10 minutes before his wake-up time (I should also mention at this juncture that alarm clocks don’t work on Lance), that somehow it will be easier for him to roll out of bed on time at 6:30. Five years in, we have little evidence to support this claim. Usually I have to pester Lance repeatedly, often accompanied by the mother of all stink-eyes, until he stumbles, half-awake, into the bathroom.
Thankfully, the dog has been a godsend to me in this regard, since he loves bounding onto the bed and bestowing Lance with lots and lots of kisses. He’s a good, trained pup, though, and will wait patiently outside the bedroom door until he’s beckoned.
The other day, it’s right around 6:30 and Lance is showing no signs of life. My routine anxiety that we’re not going to get out of the house on time to catch the train starts to simmer.
Me: “Honey, it’s 6:30. Time to wakey wakey, eggs and bacey.”
Ripley then jumps onto the bed, but stays at its foot instead of attacking Lance’s face with kisses. Since he’s not bothering Lance, I leave the room to go put away the ironing board, giving Lance a few more minutes of rest—heck, its Friday, after all.
Me, upon my return: “Alright, honey, it’s about 6:35 now, we really need—Ripley, what are you eating?”
Ripley’s busy munching on something as he’s lying on the bed, and whatever-it-is is getting all over the duvet cover. At first, I think it’s charcoal—for whatever reason, in my mind, it looks like the smudging you get when using charcoal in art class. That couldn’t be it, though, since I haven’t had charcoal in the house in years. Did he grab a clump of dirt from outside and I just didn’t notice until now….?
As all pet parents grow accustomed to, I pry open his furry mouth and plunge right in with my fingers.
Me: “Ugh, Ripley, what is in your mouth?”
I extract the substance, at first a bit mystified as it rests in my hand. This is some squishy dirt—
Me: “It’s poop. It’s poopit’spoopit’spoop.”
Yep, it’s a soggy log of cat poop sprinkled with litter, just sitting there in my hand. Initially, my mind is blank. What the hell am I supposed to do with thing? I hot-potato it for a few seconds as my conscious mind comes back to me, all the while Lance is half-asleep in a poop-covered bed, accompanied by a dog whose snout is crusted with cat litter and feces.
Ripley looks up at me, tongue lolling out of his mouth.
Once it dawns on Lance what’s going on, he snaps awake like that poop was a shot of espresso into his veins. He’s had his own fair share of puppy poop stories, and while sure, poop is universal humor, it’s not quite so funny at 6:30 in the morning.
While it was no fun, and I freaked out about Ripley being okay (kitty poop is not good for pups), it did occur to me later that at least now, if I’m worried about getting to the train on time, I have a deuce up my sleeve if I need to get Lance out of bed in the morning.