This is me.
I freed myself last month. I had to liberate myself from bondage. My biological brother thought I was crazy to leave, and my step sister thought I’d never have the guts to leave. They were placated with simple things like food, and shelter, but not me. I bounced out of there. I had to. I couldn’t picture a life of being fed dry, horrible tasting dog food on a daily basis while my owners ate Papa John’s pizza with impunity. Here’s the news, ‘Purina’ sucks. God forbid these penny pinching humans sprang for some ‘Blue Buffalo’ just once this century. My mind was made up. It was time to ghost myself.
My Kid Brother.
I had started planning my escape a few days prior, after the idiot youngest son started dressing me, and himself in girls clothing. Any self respecting dog would feel exactly the same way that I felt. This could not stand. It was only going to get worse as I would’ve been trapped, an unwilling spectator, and occasional participant, to this kid’s struggle with gender appropriate clothing. I shudder to think of what the future would have had in store for me. I studied my captors, took copious mental notes of their comings and goings. They tried to ‘buy me off’ with stupid toys, and nasty snacks, in a sorry effort to mask their guilt for abandoning us for hours, and what sometimes felt like days on end. I saw right through them. The lady that they called ‘mom’ was evil. I saw her dismember a chicken once. True story. She has a really big knife that she hides in the kitchen draw. I was terrified that she might one day, use it on me. I heard them say that ‘everything tastes like chicken’, I assumed that this included me, and my kind as well.
My Step-Sister. ‘Snukems’
She also has this red monster that she keeps in the closet. Every now and then she takes it out and walks it around the house, allowing it to eat dirt, and perfectly good food scraps. In the back of my mind, I knew that she was hoping I would slip up and let it eat me. Not this Golden Retriever. Not now, not ever. I warned my brother that barking at it would only give her an excuse to let it do it’s worst. I hope he remembers to follow my advice. I noticed that there is one day during the week that the man they call ‘dad’, the two kids, the confused one among them, and the evil lady would all be at home together. They usually run around like there is an emergency on that day, in and out of the house. I was going to use that chaos to my advantage, and ‘skip to my lou’ right out of there.
The older kid, the one they call ‘daughter’, acted like she was planning something serious. One day I was in her room when she was talking on the phone in hushed tones, talking about faking identification, and doing something after hours, often stopping to listen if anyone was listening. I didn’t know what she was up to, but I wasn’t planning on sticking around to find out. The man they called ‘dad’ was also up to something. I heard him talking on the phone about laying money on the line, and pushing his luck. He too, would stop and listen for the listeners. There was something sinister about this family, I was sure of it. Between the ‘mom’, her knife and secret red monster, the cross-dressing boy, the pushing his luck ‘dad’, and the after hours ‘daughter’, I no longer felt safe. Tonight was the night.
I knew that they would send us out for a walk with the ‘daughter’, which was good news because she very rarely paid attention to anything past the phone at the end of her arm. I tried to give my brother and step sister some life advice before I made my break, but they didn’t seem to comprehend my plans. Sadly, this was not surprising. They had both drank the ‘kool-aid’ of prisoner disguised as pet cover story and never questioned it. To be honest, I never thought that they were very bright. Especially my step sister, the one they called ‘Snukems’. I suspected she was dumb, after noticing how she liked to bark at nothing in particular, for no apparent reason. My brother wasn’t as bad but he would still do stupid things like chase his own tail without ever being able to catch it, I always asked him what he would do if he ever caught it. He didn’t have an answer. He was too young to understand life. To be fair, I was battling my own addiction. My weakness for sniffing out the urine of other dogs was something I knew I had to overcome, god willing.
My window of opportunity came as we rounded the corner near the dog park. ‘Snukems’ saw the neighbors pair of Jack Russell’s and went bananas. This caught the daughter off guard and in a panic she dropped our leashes in favor of dropping her phone, and it was off to the races. I still remember her calls to me, ordering me to return. Fat chance, I thought as her voice became more distant with each stride of my sprint. Adios plantation, and hello new big, very big, did I mention big world? The first thing I noticed was that the monsters out here were much bigger than the red monster at the prison. I became very good at avoiding their menacing roar, sometimes they would get mad and scream. Their breath smelled awful, and their humans would speak a new language I was unfamiliar with. I would pass other dogs still enslaved and feel sorry for them, until they tried to attack me, then I just run away. Because I can.
I can honestly say that freedom is a wonderful thing. I knew all the best places in town to eat, and I had several comfortable locations around the city where I go to sleep. I can’t tell you where though, safe real estate is hard to come by. On Monday’s I would eat Italian, ‘Rocco’s’ always had warm pasta, with tomato sauce out back. On Sunday nights they’d put out pasta cake. It’s very good! It came in very handy on those nights when the air was chilled. The human old lady who lived on Vineland put out water, and some strange soup on a consistent basis. It was mine whenever I wanted it for the low price of terrorizing her cats. I must admit, it felt good to smack those little bastards around sometimes. I guess one downside was the fact that my coat got quite dirty, this city can be a serious dust bowl sometimes, but I hated water more than being dirty, so I basically just sucked it up. You wouldn’t believe what some of these humans do when they think that nobody is watching. I’m always watching.
Rocco’s. Sunday night pasta cake. Yum.
I look back on my days of freedom quite fondly. Today, my situation isn’t so great. I was apprehended by these humans with khaki pants a few weeks ago, and now they have me in some maximum security prison. I’ve been trying to formulate another escape but this place has serious security. They’ve got me in this small cage, and I am being fed, but you guessed it, crappy dry dog food. It’s even worse than ‘Purina’ if you can believe it. The humans here wear long white coats, and I’ve seen them use needles on some of the other inmates. I’m not sure why though. In a way, I miss my original captors. If they hadn’t been plotting to kill me, then maybe I wouldn’t be here today. But that’s old news, the irony right now, is that I am hoping a human, any human comes by to spring me from this joint. Today is Sunday. Pasta cake at Rocco’s.