Princess & the Poo/ Life on Fast Forward/12 year old’s mindset

January 2, 2022


I like walking my dogs. I like getting up in the morning, throw on some comfortable walking clothes and heading out to wherever the whims of our dogs take us. With Matilda joining our circus, the walking time quickly increased as the other two are on the backside of the mountain and prefer a more leisurely life these days. It took me a while to get my stamina up to match Tilly’s exuberance, causing walks to pass the hour mark regularly. One thing on our walk I haven’t quite mastered is her sensitivity to going #2. Maybe sensitivity isn’t the correct word. Maybe it’s her level of alertness during the activity. On each walk she will assume the dance, stance, position five or six times before finally completing the deal. She’s a PT. A Poo Tease. She raises my hopes each time, then a car, a bike, a child, a bird chirp, any presence or noise will derail the whole process. That would be a problem if we lived in a metro area. Yeah, we live in Tokyo, what would be the chance any of that would happen on a regular basis? That’s why we have to reset every 5-7 minutes and pray the kids are off to school, the working class are all on the bus, and the birds are off on some power line about to drop a load on an unsuspecting commuter. The bird’s focus and commitment when evacuating makes me jealous my Matilda isn’t more like them.

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Noticing my Abby’s movements lately has me reflecting more than usual. Doesn’t respond to her name any more. Barks at anything that moves or surprises her, which is everything since she doesn’t hear. She’s kind of an anti- Betty White. She is bitter at all, no preference in her distain.


Her walking distance and time have been drastically reduced. As many have witnessed a stubborn old person you will understand how an old dog will say no more walking. She’s turns around on a dime heading back home like she forgot her purse.


Even her eyesight has me wondering what she is experiencing.

The incessant coughing in the middle of the night from her windpipe weakening.


All of this at once. Like watching a life put on fast forward.


I never had the opportunity to care for my parents when they got older as they never

reached that age or condition. Here, for the first time in my life, I’m the primary caregiver for an elderly being. The fact I’ve watched over her from young lady to maturity to middle-aged to old bitty is a bit unnerving, but it’s something I need to do for her, my companion for eight years, and, honestly, for myself.

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My nieces stopped by for a holiday visit and I don’t think I’ve ever been as proud of a 12-year old.


As soon as she stepped foot into the living room, I saw that look. That same desperate look I had from about 11-18 years of age. She focused right on the tv screen, and ask if we had Netflix. She wanted to, no, she NEEDED to see Squid Game.


When I was that age living in a rural town with no stoplights we had three channels on tv. Then I started to go to the nearby town for middle school. Those people had something called HBO- Home Box Office, a cable movie channel. From the moment I heard about it, I went in search of. Every house in that area was a potential movie theatre and whenever I was told we had to go into town to someone’s house, my first, second and third thoughts involved wondering if they had HBO. If they did, how would I finagle a way to sample that entertainment? It made sleep at night difficult. The imagination is a wonderful thing and without a doubt always outperformed the actual tv schedule of the movie channel. Thus, that look of wonder, curiosity, and desire all wrapped up in a hormone-raged body.


I hadn’t seen that look for years but recognized it in seconds. I’m glad to see that yearning for pay-tv transcends international borders and is present in pre-teens all over the world.


Songs I’m listening to


Billy Preston- Nothing From Nothing

Billy Preston- With You I’m Born Again

The Brothers Johnson- I’ll Be Good To You

Ray Charles- You Don’t Know Me

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