(Friday, November 11, 2016, by J Kirk Richards)
Whilst traipsing downtown near sunrise I see near Maggy Avvy (Magnolia Avenue to everyone but me) about 9th or 10th Streets between Maggy and Palmetto, in downtown Sanford’s Historic District – hysteric if you ask and thank you for asking – a guy with a typically large cream-colored who bends over said dog’s rearmost quarters and with a baggie on his hand picks up the dog’s doo.
I said: “I wish some of the walk-doggers in my neck o’ Snaffurd were as courtenous as you two.” He laughed, dutifully I thought, and they both smiled and walked on. I turned down Palmetto Avenue: what is it with large white or cream-colored dogs these days? The cats, carefully ensconced on their several front porches quietly observed the parades, none of them looking the least leash-worn. I had to stop each of five such encounters with walked dogs – each on a leash: how sad! – for hand-sniffs and in one case paws-on-my-shoulders with full-face licks added for seasoning.
“Hey,” I said to the mortified young lady behind her massive friendly pooch, “he was just reading the the comics with me.
“He’ll soon be back to reading the daily news posted on fenceposts, lampposts and fire hydrants and perhaps add a few lines of his own to each letter he gets. Rarely do we get such information impartially from not just our friends, family and acquaintances but enemies too and all without a lie to soften the speech.”
And then as I passed onto lower downtown Palmetto I came upon a destroyed front yard bearing all the marks of a three- or four-year-old behind a so-expected short white picket fence. A pastic trike of that age’s size, parked off walkway but with its rear wheels half-on and half-off, toys all a-scatter up and down the walk and speckled in the yard like silent Spring daisies uncropped by a mower’s measure. I had to smile: a child in full play at home, especially outside in a protective environment can and often does learn more in mere moments than in any sterile pre-k or preschool concentration camp’s daylong struggle with schedule.
My opinion. Feel free to disagree.
But what spread my modest enjoy-this grin to full width and high-beam glow revealed itself in multi-hued chalk-borne fashion on each of each of the three steps leading from the detritus-filled front yard up the concrete walkway of this quaint little frame bungalow were the words: