But whose counting? You walk in a dog park there’s going to be poop. There are two kinds of people in a dog park: those who pick it up and those who don’t. I’m of the former set and my husband of the latter. Tonight, in exasperation, I actually said, it’s a waste of brain power to remember where the poop was in order to avoid it when you walk around again in the coming darkness when you could just pick it up when you see it the first time. So I get the just desserts of those who speak their conscience but don’t act on it. Gulliver decides to roll in the grass, on purpose, exactly in the place where a nice bit of warm, soft poop was left behind. Only I didn’t discover this till he runs over to us for a quick how-do before taking off for an old acquaintance. I rub the soft hair at the back of his neck just ahead of his harness and, oops, there it is! I was smeared. I raise the offending fingers to my husband and say, THAT’s why we pick up the poop when we see it! He doesn’t seem to make the connection. So I repeat myself, bringing the hand closer to his face. He asks if it smells bad. Now, on a good day, I’m not the finger sniffing type. At dusk, in the dog park, even less. Of course it smells bad, I shriek, it’s POOP! I can laugh at myself now, after Gulliver’s had a bath. After the power struggle to see who’d end up the wettest is over. After I force his bum down over the drain in the kitchen sink for the umtieth time, yelling, SIT! as close to his muzzle as possible without getting a mouthful of dog hair. After his near instant licking forgiveness threatens to bring me to tears. After I scrub him dry, at first roughly, with the hand towel my husband drapes over a chair in the dining room when I ask for the BIG BLACK TOWEL. After I cocoon our four-legged son in the big towel I have retrieved from the linen closet and, more gently now, clean his ears, dry his tail and toes. After I imagine I would sit there rocking a damp dog on my lap forever or at least until one of us had to pee. But then and there, in the dog park, when I had opportunity to enjoy confirmation of having been right, again, and couldn’t, I was far from being in a laughing mood.