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Sunday, March 6, 2011

PooPaws Harlequin, the DirtDog

Harley pooped in my TNA bag and he doesn't seem to be one bit sorry about it. Yes, I'm a tattletale, but let me tell you how it started.

On Wednesday past, we had to go to a convention. And by 'we', I mean us teachers. And by 'us teachers', I mean specifically, us Try-Athletes. Jenny and I were driving down to Edmonton together. I intended to leave Harlequin with a sitter, but those plans fell through, leaving us to take him along for the 'joy'ride.

So off we went, like three musketeers.

First, he is a brat.

Second, he is spoiled rotten.

Third, I don't like traveling with him because he doesn't follow any rules. He just does whatever he wants, the spoiled rotten brat.

We stopped by the side of the road to let him pee. Well, he is not used to peeing outside because it is cold. So he wouldn't do it. He would just stand there in his little sweater and stick his paws in the air because they were cold. So we snuck him inside restrooms and he did it in there on peepads. See? Spoiled.

When we finally got to Edmonton, we got to our room and we were exhausted. We settled everything in, and went to visit some friends. By the time we got back to our room, we were overtired. And so was Harlequin. He was wired. We tried to sleep, but Harley was out of control. Lights Out = Sleep Time for most organisms, but for him, it means Rave Time.

At this point, he decides he wants to tap dance on our beds, and race around the room, and start lugging stuff around the place, namely toys and food. I tell him off a few times, and Jenny ignores him because paying him any attention at this point is just fueling the fire. Eventually I catch him and pin him to the bed. He lets his body go slack, because he knows I am the Boss of the situation.

Whatever! As soon as my body goes slack with anything resembling sleep, Harley is off to the races again. The dog is on crack.

I am so tired at this point, I want to strangle him. And if I could catch him, I might consider it.

In the morning, we get ready to go to convention. We leave Harley set up in his kennel with the TV on for company.

Everything is as his normal situation would be. However, Harlequin the Maniac is unhappy. He starts barking. And doesn't stop for over 25 minutes. We know this because we waited outside our hotel room door to see how long he would take to settle down.

The hotel people told us that fines would be determined by the manager, depending on complaints from other guests. And after that amount of time, it sounded like someone from the room below was banging on their ceiling/our floor. We decided to go in and talk to Harley-Barley.

I picked up Harley's kennel and peered inside. His ghostly white figure with the black eyes peered back out at me. I wanted to shake the living daylights out of him.

"Mama is very mad at you." I tell him this all the time when he is a bad boy but he doesn't care.

I take him out of his kennel / "his house" and put him on the bed. He is trying to get away from me so I put him on his side and talk to him like that. Jenny calls this my Body Slam & Secret Talk move.

"Mama is very mad at you because you are a bad boy and won't stop barking. You have to be a nice boy today!" Harley wouldn't care if I was talking about flying weiners and rolling baloney - all he knows is that Mama let him out of his house.

"We are going to have to take him with us. I don't even have a bag with me." I said to Jenny. "What are we going to take him in??" I looked around, and all I could find was my black and purple TNA bag.

"We are going to have to use that one," she agreed, "we can't take him into the convention in just a purse."

So we got him ready, and settled him into the bag. I noticed that his clothes were in the bottom of the bag - a couple of sweaters, etc., but I didn't think anything of it. They would come in handy in case he got cold.

So off we went to the convention, hiding the dog in a big ole bag. Harley was as happy as a clam. He laid down in the bag - as long as he got to go with Mama & Jenny, he would have hid in a hoodie or rolled up around my neck in a scarf. Harley is not particular about where he rests his bottom, as long as that bottom is somewhere in close proximity to me.

So we went to check out a session and chatted with people, took in the displays and chatted with more people, then we went and had coffee and chatted again, then we had lunch and chatted again, and again, and eventually headed off for another session *ALL THE WHILE, bringing Mr Dog to the bathroom intermittently*. That is an important note to make. He was not deprived of bathroom facilities.

We got to Hall D, exhausted from lack of sleep and lugging around all the paraphernalia associated with a dog and ourselves. Every year, I say I am not going to take anything but the bare necessities and this year I was doing great until the Dog Debacle. So we decided to take a seat near the back, in case I had to leave for the bathroom. Great thinking on our part.

It was a few minutes until the session started but we wanted to be early.

So we sat and got situated. We lamented the exhaustion. We drank our drinks. We took off our jackets. We got comfortable. I unzipped tha bag. We played a bit with Harlequin... Harley the Arse.

We started making plans about what we would do that night. We would take a nap after supper, then maybe go shopping.

Then Harley got antsy. He turned around a couple of times and I remember thinking, "Oh good, he will go to sleep now."

But Harley kept turning. And the turns kept getting faster and faster. Those kinds of turns mean only one thing: Poop.

"What is he doing?" Jenny asked.

"Harley is going to poop!" I said, horrified. I hoped that it would be a normal poop. As disgusting as it would be, normal poop would be the least of all evils. I thought, at the very least, if I could get him to the bathroom, I could scoop out the poop and salvage what was left of the situation.

I tried to get Harley to stop running in mad circles. I tapped his back, "Harley, stop it, stop it, stop it!" I yelled, trying to make him hold it until I could run out of there and get him to the bathroom. My dog does not listen, though, when it comes to his poop time. Harley got into the old familiar squat position, ready to let loose.

I had to zip the bag. Things could have become nastier than they already were.

You see, when we entered the room, there were two small groups of people already sitting down, chatting away gaily to each other. Now, if you know anything about anything, you will know that nothing attracts people more than babies and puppies. Harley is not a puppy but he looks like a cute, fluffy teddy bear. Never mind that he fights like a grizzly bear / piranha fish. If you get too close and wiggle your fingers, out comes the teeth. He has the pride of an eagle with the strength of a little baby wolverine. :)

So when we got there, and we unzipped the bag, little white Harley popped out his head and looked around, so glad to be free. And of course, the accompanying oohs and ahhs strengthened his pride and his wired up nature. He wanted to get out and roam around, and the people around us thought he was cute. They wanted to see more of him.

Well, they wouldn't want to see more of him soon. And they certainly wouldn't want to smell any more of him.


I could hear the sounds of poop flying everywhere inside the bag. This was not a normal poop. My heart sunk and I wanted to cry. Why must my dog be a Drama Dog?

I'm not having kids. I can only imagine what THEY will be like.

When the noises stopped and the bag started moving again, I unzipped the right hand side and looked in, as I thought it would be safe. Harley's little eyes looked out at me and I nearly died with the smell. My eyes watered. I wanted to kill him.

I looked back at Jenny, "Harley pooped." I confirmed.

"AWWWW! The aroma!" said a disgusted Jenny. She sat there, with her arms crossed, the look on her face no doubt mirroring my own... What do we do now?

ZZZIIIIIPPPP! I left an airhole for Harlequin the Sh!thead and said, "We're leaving!" as I got up and held the bag in front of me with two hands. I was absolutely terrified that brown liquid was going to start running out of the bottom of the bag. I had no idea what I would do if that happened. Absolutely no idea. Harley was running around inside the bag again.

I actually forgot my jacket on the chair and about ten steps away had to go back and get it. "Jenny, come on! Grab the drinks!" I yelled. She said there was no way she was arguing with me at that point because I was so desperate to get out of there.

The people around us must have thought I was out of my mind crazy. Now, I am as crazy as a loon, but I don't want people being witness to it. I remember looking around and desperately needing Jenny to be hurrying behind me, then when I saw her rushing behind me, gathering up the drinks and getting the rest of our things, I started laughing, and then she started laughing. And we were rushing out of Hall D, and we couldn't stop laughing. As we hurriedly walked by people, they must have thought we were absolutely disgusting because there was no way they could not smell that bag. we avoided people like the plague, except we were the plague.

We were almost peeing in our pants, laughing. Harley was definitely having the time of his life inside the TNA bag. I was holding that bag in front of me like there was a bomb inside of it. We were trying to get outside, and we had to walk around to the escalators, which in our haste, we could not find. By the time we got there, it was such a shock to find that the escalator was not working and we had to walk up a flight up stairs that we could no longer talk to each other. We were laughing so hard, we actually could not speak for fear that we would pull a Harley and do bathroom duty in our pants.

We made it upstairs and I was so mad with Harley. I could not believe that he did that. I know he didn't do it on purpose but I still can't believe it happened. We were trying to get outside and people kept getting in the way and we were terrified someone would find out what we had in the bag.

We got outside and we had to get a cab, and thankfully there was one right outside. We went to get in but this driver said he wasn't actually a cab. Apparently he was just some random guy with a car that looked like a cab - a driver of some sort. If he only knew how much money we were willing to pay for a 4 minute drive right then, he might have been willing to pretend to be a cab at that point in his life.

Harley the Brown & White Zebra was freezing and so were we. We eventually got a cab, and sitting in the back, Harley did his business again, which made us sick with the smell and desperate with quiet laughter. We were praying that the cab driver didn't notice. He seemingly didn't, or maybe he just thought we were the most digusting women he ever met. Harley tried to get out of the bag and when I would only let his nose and eyes out, he was not happy. He was so full of poop, there was no way I could let him out in public. He needed a bath.

We go to the hotel, and just about ran to the elevator. The laughing was near unbearable at this point, and we couldn't look at each other. I was absolutely terrified that the liquid poop was going to run out of the corner of the bag. I have to say, those bags can hold quite a bit of stuff. They are good bags.

The hotel personnel smiled to say hi but to me, they seemed to smile knowingly. I felt like the narrator in Poe'sThe Tell-Tale Heart, where I was trying to get away with something but would break down and tell on myself. I just had to get upstairs without anyone smelling that bag. I'm sure people do this with kids all the time but Harley is not a kid - he is a bear / piranha / zebra / eagle / dirtbag. :)

We got to the room, and Harlequin the DirtDog went straight into the tub. I unzipped that once beautiful black and purple TNA bag and out came a brown and white mini zebra that had big sad eyes and immediately tried to walk over to me for a snuggle. He also tried to escape the confines of the bathtub.

I was in no mood for snuggles, especially when I saw brown poopy paw prints all over the pink tub, and when I say poopy paw prints, I mean there was enough poop on those paws to make prints from one end of the tub to the other, repeatedly. It was like Harley was the interior decorator for Paws, Ink. with the brilliant new idea of using poop as a stamp pad.

I checked through the bag to see if Harley's vet papers were in there or if anything was salvageable. There were a bunch of cute clothes in there, including his fleece-lined leather jacket. All were finished.

Jenny said this was where the Clean Up Mission became like a surgery.

"There is no way to fix this. I would rather just buy a new one."

"You may as well just throw the whole thing away!" she exclaimed.

"Harley, you have made Mama so very, very mad at you. What kind of dog poops in their house? You are lucky you are not a dead dog." I started to speak to Harley at this point.

"Get rid of this." I handed the bag off to Jenny. She left the room and returned a few minutes later. In the meantime, I had started the water to give PooPaws a bath.

"Is the water too cold, Harley? Well do you know what, Harley? It'll get warm soon, Harley. Did you plan on taking a bath in Edmonton, Harley? Because I didn't plan on giving you one!" I was so mad with him.

"Shampoo." I said.

"Shampoo." Jenny replied, handing it to me.



I lathered and rinsed.

"Do you need me any more?" Jenny asked.

"No, I'm ok. Thanks. Go take a nap and we'll figure out what to do for later after this here Dirt Dog gets straightened away." I said, nearly emotionally defeated by Harlequin the Drowned Rat. "I need to have a nap, too!"

I held Harley under the running water to get all the soap and conditioner out and he was not pleased with me. I wrapped him in two fluffy towels and he snuggled in there deeply, shivering. I sat on the bed, doing emails while he snuggled and slept. I noticed that there was no poop happening now.

When he was nearly dry, he got up, stretched, and went for a little race around the room. I captured him and took him into the bathroom for a little dryer action so he wouldn't get too cold when we went out later. Then he was stuffed into a sweater that was the only one free from the sin he earlier commited. It was also a hand-me-down from my cousin's late dog.

See what happens when you sh!t all over your own stuff? You have to wear hand-me-downs from dead dogs.

I called my mom and told her what happened. She told me *I was a spoiled brat* for being mean to Harley. She said Harley's poop was a force of nature that he could not control and that if I could not treat him better than that, then I should board him on a plane and send him home to his Grandmother.

Well, then.

She also said that I better straighten out if I ever have kids because poop is not that big a deal. I said that my kids better not go around pooping in bags. She said I better not put my kids in bags in the first place.

Things could have been worse. I could have lost him. That would have been way, way worse.

I do love him. I hate his poop.

He is curled up at my feet right now. He is not so spoiled right now - he is naked because he now has a serious deficit in clothes.

A bag of poop. In a meeting. At convention.

If you ever get bored, come on a trip with me. You will be glad to have your normal life back.
* Jenny - thank you for putting up with me and Harley-Barley. He owes you flowers :)


  1. I laughed SO hard when I read this, tears were coming in my eyes. Some how I just pictured everything and it couldn't have been funnier.

  2. Oh, Harley, Harley, Harley. He just does whatever he wants: poop in bags, escape from the park, not take baths. You name it.


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