I don’t have a dog because I’m not responsible enough to come home at the same time every day, and I really like happy hour.
It’s impressive that people manage to make dog ownership work, since the only dog I’ve ever lived with was a complete insomniac basket case because he lived with four very social girls on the beach and never knew which one of us would feed him or let him out next.
(He ate a lot of garbage.)
Lately I’ve been hanging out with a lot of dogs, with it being summer and all, and dogs always remind me of my friend Gina and her toolbag ex-boyfriend, Jeff.
They each had a dog.
Gina and Jeff had been dating forEVER and they shared an apartment and then made a cross country move together for her to take a job. (If that’s not commitment, I don’t know what is!)
Jeff, who had his masters degree
(then why is he such a dumbass?), got a job teaching at a nearby college.
He wasn’t super interested in teaching, so it was a bit surprising that during the semester Jeff became — as Gina puts it — “engrossed” with the new profession.
So engrossed that he even asked her to move with him to a new (dog-friendly) apartment closer to the college. They did.
Then Jeff began to have late nights at the school. Gina, an overachiever herself, thought absolutely nothing of it since this was her loving, smart, “I-moved-1,000-miles-to-be-with-you” boyfriend.
She passed it off as him just working on complicated lesson plans or grading papers from the freshmen.
But then Gina noticed that Jeff randomly started going to the college’s soccer games.
Jeff said yes, SCHOOL SPIRIT, that he was trying to get more involved.
He said he felt like it was his niche now, and he never knew that he’d like teaching so much. It was a miracle!
Gina didn’t have time to question his new passion because the holidays were coming up right then, and she was working a lot.
Jeff was flying home to see his family and he was really excited about it. Gina was staying, working overtime. With the dogs.
Like she had done many times before in their four-year relationship.
Oddly, a few days before his flight, Jeff told Gina that since she was working so hard during the holiday she shouldn’t have to handle the dogs by herself.
So he offered to board them.
“I just think it would be easier with one less dog,” he said.
“What?” she said. “You want to board just YOUR dog?”
She was confused. Why would you need to board any of the dogs? Where the EFF did THAT come from?
She told Jeff that was completely unnecessary, she could handle both dogs just fine, ThankYouVeryMuch, and besides, it would cost $150 for the whole week he was gone.
And, since when were both dogs such a burden?
She handled them just fine when he went to all those soccer games.
But Jeff insisted.
In the name of helping HER concentrate on her work, after all.
The holiday break came, and Jeff and Gina called and texted and wished each other happy holidays and all that, but the cheerful spirit left suddenly, not even a week after Jeff got back in town.
He had something to tell her.
He didn’t go out of town at all.
The entire holiday, he was shacking up at his new girlfriend’s house ACROSS TOWN.
With his dog.
And, as you can probably guess, the girlfriend was yes, a.) his student and b.) a soccer player.
“SO, I COULD HAVE RUN INTO YOU AT THE EFFING STARBUCKS WHEN YOU WERE SUPPOSED TO BE IN NORTH CAROLINA??!?!?” Gina screamed.
Jeff nodded and then asked her, and her dog, to move out of the apartment.
During the post-breakup self-reflection period (which is a DELIGHT to all your friends, haha), Gina kept saying that she knew something was wrong well before Jeff admitted to being a douchebag.
It wasn’t the late nights at the college (although thinking about that makes her want to vomit).
And it wasn’t even the soccer game attendance. (vomit twice.)
It was the fact that he wanted to “board” his dog for a week.
Why did his dog need to be brought into a new place, with a new girl?
Was this their inaugural meeting? Like how people meet their significant others’ children for the first time???
DAMMIT! Gina thought. She cursed herself for not pressing him further at the time about why exactly boarding just his dog made sense.
I keep thinking about all the lies Jeff would have likely told her to get his dog out of the house, had they stayed together.
Perhaps his next college “lecture” would be for the students to do an assignment about his dog’s unique fur coat and he’d need to bring him to class for observation.
(Extra credit to the new girlfriend for letting his dog SLEEP ON THE FLOOR NEXT TO HER BED.)
Since I don’t have a dog, I wonder: do they realize what’s going on when their owners cheat?
Do they whimper at the side of the unfamiliar bed, confused about where “mommy” is?
Do male dogs abide by “guy code?”
That’s giving “doggie style” a whole new meaning.