When I Yell At My Dog

“The average dog is a nicer person than the average person.” —Andy Rooney

Do you ever have one of those days when, instead of being humbled by your relative good fortune, part of your brain hyperventilates about all those things you were going to do but haven’t yet and your hair’s thinning and which camera should you buy and what does it matter anyway, and then to top it off you yell at a perfectly innocent dog? Like she asked to go outside and squat in the rain?

When I lose my temper like that there’s usually something bothering me that’s just out of sight in the back of my mind.

I know it isn’t politics that’s aggravated me—I’ve given up on seeing true partisanship in my lifetime and am at peace with that notion. It could be spiritual in nature, but I’ve only recently thought seriously about those matters (at least consciously: it’s impossible to know what’s been brewing inside all these years).

What about things, then? Do I have enough of them? All of my cameras are old, and will be obsolete but usable soon (one is already). Why does grass look greener across the fence-line? But I’m sure that isn’t it, either: my lens selection is well-thought-out, and I have outlets for my photos when I take them. Scratch that off the list.

Could it simply be that I’m vexing myself by wasting time over things I can’t change?

Whatever causes these periodic lapses isn’t the dog’s fault, that much is clear.

And, since she is a dog, she’s gratefully accepted my apology.


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