Patti Soldavini

Scat On a Hot Shingled Roof

In weimaraners on 02/23/2011 at 7:07 pm

I told this story to friends over the Summer and I’m not sure how I neglected to re-tell it here, but it bears repeating. This is actually a postscript of sorts to my “Kryptonite” post. Once a week, I’d take an environmentally unfriendly plastic grocery bag and march out into the backyard with a scowl on my face and a garden shovel in my hand. Time to scoop up and dispose of the fecal land mines all over the yard. By the time I’m done, the bag feels as heavy as if there’s a bowling ball the size of Minnesota in it. Mind you, I perform this unsightly chore in full view of all the cars that pass by on this busy county road. I know if I drove by and saw someone doing this, I’d laugh my ass off. And then I’d probably lean out the window and yell something like “HEY, DON’T FORGET TO PICK UP YOUR OWN WHEN YOU’RE DONE PICKING UP THE DOG’S!” Olive waits inside the kitchen, quietly tearing everything off the refrigerator door, even messily devouring the cute miniature paper doll chain that my friend’s 6-year old made for me. I think I’m done. Usually, I walk three-quarters of the way around the property to dispose of this transitory septic farm in the trash can. Today however, I’m lazy. I’ll just go to the back of the house, tie up the bag and heave it down below near the garbage can. Then, when I go out later, I’ll pick it up and dispose of it properly. I walk over to the top of the rotting railroad tie retaining wall (which to replace is going to cost me what it would cost to purchase a small country), tie a knot in the bag, swing it backward, then forward, releasing it as though I were in the national finals of a slow pitch softball tournament. Wow. It feels great as it leaves my hand. This baby is going up, and up and up…OH SHIT. IT’S GOING TO LAND ON THE ROOF. Yes, the bag of Olive’s lawn cigars and moon pies (complete with intestinal parasites) lands on the corner of the roof. The only saving grace is that it barely misses landing on the vent pipe that prevents radon fumes from building up in the house (a common geologic occurrence in New Jersey.) WELL, THIS IS GREAT. IT’S ONLY JULY AND I DON’T NORMALLY CALL THE GUTTER GUY UNTIL THE FALL. For a brief second, I think of getting the ladder out to retrieve it. I quickly realize the ladder will fall short by about 15 feet. Then a newspaper headline flashes before my eyes: LOCAL WOMAN KILLED IN FALL FROM LADDER. BAG OF DOGSHIT FOUND AT SCENE. I shake my head and walk away. Maybe it will decompose and blow away before then. As annoyed as I am with my laziness, I am even more annoyed by my “shitty pitch.” But by the time I walk inside the kitchen, even I’m laughing. It’s a great story. I look at Olive and with a straight face and ask her, “OLIVE DID YOU SHIT ON THE ROOF?” She just looks at me all happy, with her tail wagging furiously. Without Olive, it would be just another boring day.

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  1. I had a similar experience flipping poop over our fence with a shovel when I was a kid. My brother & I didn’t want to clean up the backyard after our dog until one day a dog turd accidentally stuck to an old shed behind our fence. After that, we made a game of it and competed to see who could get one to stick the best-you had to put some muscle into it. We were real little, mind you.

    My mom was not happy.

  2. soooooo….that was during the summer! Is it still sitting on your roof now????

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