The case of the disappearing dog

Two dogs ran away… and were eaten? 

Huh?

So, now I know why it is a good idea to skip the booze. I ran through my notes from the night before and saw the above title. What did it mean? I couldn’t remember any dogs.

I remember eating hot chips whilst waiting for a taxi.

I remember drinking a litre of beer from a carafe.

I remember an unfortunately deranged man going shop to shop and causing trouble. He came up to me and mumbled something. I have no idea what. He had a guitar and a red hat and a can of rum in his hand. I knew there was something wrong with him mentally, and I presume he wanted money- but I think he wanted something else. Beer, probably.

“No thanks, I’m not interested in whatever you want,” I told him. He stared at me with a face that was quite possibly the most frightening I have ever seen. I stared back, aghast. Thankfully, I was wearing aviator sunglasses so he couldn’t see my eyes. He walked away, into the cafe. They chased him out and I only really became afraid when the waitress took hold of the bucket of knives next to my table. It never even occurred to me that this man could be quite so unhinged as to cause violence.

He moved on…. came back, crossed the street, went into another cafe- came out screaming and ranting and raving. A wounded animal.

I remember that! 

But two dogs? I asked my wife and she gave me a strange look… Then realisation dawned.

She told me how they had a friend that used to have chickens. The chickens ran away. Only, as I’m sure you can figure out, they didn’t run away at all- unless they decided to run straight into the oven.

The poor chickens were eaten.

A few years later their two dogs ran away. Kids being kids, they teased their poor friend that the dogs were eaten, too.

Which is quite cruel, isn’t it? But that’s kids for you, and at least my notes gave me a chance to recollect my thoughts on the strange man that wanted… What, exactly?

I can’t say that I know. Respect, perhaps. A little decency, maybe? As my darling wife pointed out: what aspect of society has a man like that ever found to be positive? No part of his day was a happy one. Everybody he met dealt with him with susipicion- and quite rightly so. His life has become a self-fulfilling prophecy of resentment and distrust.

I don’t have any solutions to the problem- and the problem appears to be growing. One of the downsides of the global village is that begging is an export, and begging techniques are being exported around the globe at an alarming rate. It won’t be long until Melbourne will be consumed with pick-pockets and gangs of women armed with fake babies, but for now we have sad souls walking up and down strips of bars and cafes, and if you’re lucky they’ll only be asking for money.

And if they’re lucky? I don’t know what luck means to them. A meal, a home, a family? 

Or a bucket of knives?

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