Monday, September 2, 2019


Jake has a job. Well, let's call it something grander. He has a mission in life. He's a smile-maker. He's very good at it, a natural. Out for a walk in town for an hour he can make 20 or 30 of them, no sweat. He will probably make a good few just looking at his picture.

And don't laugh. It's an important job. We need as much simple joy as we can get in this life. Particularly right now. Dogs humanize us in a way we seem to have forgotten how. They equalize us. Forget all pride and dignity, he or she who is constrained to stoop in the middle of a crowded sidewalk to remove the steaming gift left by your pooch.

There's more. People with dogs talk to other people with dogs. Hell, even people without dogs stop to talk to people with dogs. Jake introduces us to people of all kinds, rich or poor, snooty or gregarious, black, white, brown or purple, "liberal" or "conservative." We stop and talk. We talk about dogs, we talk about the weather. We might even get to agree about global warming.

So Jake--and others like him--do us all a service. Things are bad enough as it is. Imagine what it would be like without them.

He takes a well-earned rest after a hard day's work...

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