The Tourists

Traveling for work means dealing with tourists on the road. Sooooo many tourists. Young and old, every time of day or night, every day of the week. It’s as if no one goes to school, has a job, a life. Or everyone I come across is super rich and has no need for any of that.

I end up traveling down a lot of 2-lane roads when I drive. Lots of curves, no room to pass, low speed limits, and tourists. There is no frustration greater than being stuck behind a tourist going 5 or 10 miles under the speed limit when you can’t pass them. The reason they drive so slow seems to be so they can look out every window except the windshield to take in the scenery, completely unaware of anyone around them. Or they don’t care.

This is something that happens several times a day. This is something that happens regardless of location. This is something that happens no matter what time it is. This is something that happens even if I beg God to run either me or the tourists off the road.

These same tourists don’t appear to have ever eaten in any restaurant anywhere, ever. They don’t understand pictures, lines, how to order food, how to be polite to those in front of or behind them, or that they are the only ones who are not under a time-constraint.

My favorite tourists are the ones who stop in doorways to chat to the other tourists whether they know them or not. These same tourists also don’t know how to park, but I don’t have to patience to get into that right this second.

I love traveling and looking at the scenery of new places I’ve never explored. I do the speed limit, or more, I use the mirrors in the vehicle, I pull over safely to allow others to pass me so I can stop and look around. I order quickly when in a line and I don’t stand in doorways to talk about the fucking roadrunner I saw run across the road last week. We get it. It was a roadrunner. It ran. It ran across the road. Get out of my way, Dr. Seuss, I have things to do.

If you’re reading this and you are not a tourist, I’m sure you know exactly what I’m talking about. If you’re reading this and you ARE a tourist, I absolutely mean no disrespect. But that means you should be respectful as well. Be mindful of those around you on the road, in restaurants, in doorways, and in parking lots instead of parking so close to my vehicle that you don’t know how to get out of your car so you stare at me until I move because you screwed up and don’t understand how to back up and park again without taking 20 minutes to get the car in gear.

Stay classy, and I’ll see you at the next stop.

The Stray

I’m currently in the Rio Grande Valley for work. It’s an interesting community and culture with a lot to offer, and a lot to stay away from. While I was on a site, I saw a medium-sized dog lapping up water from a muddy puddle.

I’ve mentioned before that I love dogs. I’ve also mentioned recently, yesterday, that I’m dying, from the plague, which is actually just the flu, and I’m a baby. So with the combination of my love for canines and my weakened state from my illness, you can imagine how I felt for this dog. I had a break while my tests were running, so I called the poor little guy over. Of course, he came right over, anything for the hope of a scrap of food. As he sauntered closer I noticed his ribs were showing and he had no collar. He was covered in fleas, extremely malnourished, and mastered the whole sad puppy eyes thing.

While I’m contemplated how I’m going to sneak this dog in and out of a hotel every night and take him with me on the road every day and love him and protect him and care for him forever, he caught a whiff of something and wandered off to another place. Clearly a one-sided relationship. It was never going to work between us anyway.

Now for the serious part of this. How the hell do people do this to dogs? Or animals in general? If you’re going to neglect your pet, then you don’t get to have a pet. If you can’t handle a pet in your life, then you don’t get to have a pet. If you have a pet and I see it on the side of the road with no collar drinking water out of a muddy puddle and his ribs are showing, then you’re a piece of shit and I’m going to call you out.

Take care of your animals. Do your research before bringing one into your life. You should know ahead of time if you have the time and resources for a pet. Animals deserve better and you don’t want the trouble that animal neglect can bring you. Also, how hard is it to just be a decent human being? Have some damned compassion. I can’t look at other people’s pets without making super annoying baby sounds in my head that I’m sure the animal would love. So have a heart. Animals need all the love they can get and they need it from us. If I can figure that out while my insides are leaking out of my nose because of this stupid flu, then you can figure it out on a good day.

Stay classy, and I’ll see you at the next stop.

The Fluffball

Dogs are incredible creatures. They have a great sense of smell, are intelligent (mostly), beautiful, fast, fun, adorable, and our best friends. When I say dogs, I mean dogs. not your little Chihuahua or Pomeranian rat-dog. I’m talking about medium to large sized dogs, that can actually do something. If you have to carry your dog around then it’s not a dog.

Anyway, our family has always had at least one dog in the household. Even now a large German Shepherd is at my feet gnawing on some kind of rawhide toy. I can’t begin to explain how great it feels to have a dog at my feet, doing dog things, while I write this post. She’s a great dog. She barks when there’s danger, and squirrels, and cars, and flies, and really just any change in atmospheric pressure. And I love every bit of it. She eats like a horse, drools everywhere, loves belly rubs, and is my biggest fan (definitely not because I give her table scraps during dinner).

I even love watching her. She might be staring outside at some unseen thing making a sound that can’t be heard by human ears. Maybe she’s passed out moving her legs as if she’s dreaming about chasing this unseen and soundless thing. Perhaps she doesn’t care at all because she’s too busy licking herself, loudly, to be concerned with something so trivial. Just the way she sits and looks up at me with her big brown eyes puts a smile on my face.

It doesn’t hurt that she’s well-trained, does what she’s told, and is loyal to a fault. Or that she’ll eat your tiny rat-dog for a snack. Or that she’s a giant ball of fluff that breaks any cuteness scale out there.

Since my laptop is now dead and charging, I’m having to continue this post on my phone. This means you don’t have to read anymore and I don’t have to write anymore. I’m just going to sit here and listen to this dog choke on whatever piece of rawhide she just chewed off.

Stay classy, and I’ll see you the next stop.

The Birds

In my first post I mentioned that I will have a few short and sweet posts in the blog. This will be short. Maybe not so sweet.

Birds are everywhere this time of year. Spring has sprung and all that. The birds I’m talking about are annoying, loud, come in massive flocks, and line up side-by-side on power lines. All they ever do is beg for food, caw nonstop, and shit all over everything.

With all of the air space in the world that these birds are completely free to occupy without authorization from control towers, one would think they wouldn’t have to line up next to each other and bug the crap out of me and whoever else they seem to be following around.

Of course, they tend do this around restaurants and gas stations. Obviously, they are looking for food, they’re scavengers. Who can blame them. But this is a rant and they are killing me. I could sit outside with a BB gun and have a blast all night. Shortly afterwards I’d be able to write a nice long article about how annoying PETA is.

Anyway, these pests have got to go. They are annoying, I hate them, and they distract me to no end.

Rant over. I’ll apologize now for a fairly boring post, but I had to get it off my chest. I promise to make up for it tomorrow.

Stay classy, and I’ll see you at the next stop.