Home > Out and About, Social Networking > The Road to World Conquest: Dog crap

The Road to World Conquest: Dog crap

“You’re supposed to clean that up.”

Less than a year ago, I was still in Cary, living in an apartment complex with a small scattering of dog poop receptacles/bag dispensers. I would walk Huck primarily down the grassy hillside that ran between my side of the complex and the main office/clubhouse. Most of the time, the poop stations were well-stocked with bags so that I could easily clean up after the dog. Sometimes, though, they ran empty and didn’t get refilled quickly enough.

That was the case this particular morning, when a man on the porch of his apartment watched Huck conclude his business, saw that I wasn’t cleaning up the deposit. So, he reminded me of my obligation.

“I know,” I said, gesturing at the poop station. “No bags. Sorry.”

That didn’t satisfy him: “You’re supposed to clean it up.”

“Yes,” I said, “we’ve established that.” I walked away, embarrassed, but determined not to let it happen again.

So, for future walks, I made sure to bring a spare plastic grocery bag along just in case the poop stations ran empty. No one ever had reason to call me out for letting the dog’s crap stay in their de facto back yard again.

Fast forward to last week, when I returned from a trip to see Catherine in Durham. I arrived at the new apartment in Huntsville to find a folded note stuck in my door, printed on plain white paper:

Dear Resident,

You have been reported at the office for not picking up after your pet. Numerous pet stations are located around the property to make it more convenient for our pet owners to pick up after their pets. This is a warning and if you are turned in to the office again for not picking up after your pet, you will be fined $50 per occurrence. We try very hard to keep our community clean and clutter free. Thank you in advance for your prompt cooperation.

Your Springs Team

Something I’ve bragged on about The Springs at Huntsville since I arrived here last month is the abundance of dog poop stations. So far, they are always stocked properly with bags. I have brought spare bags along, just in case, but I’ve never required them. I’ve also never failed to clean up after Huck since I got here. I do see lots of little (and some not so little) piles of crap in the grass when I walk him, but I’ve never had occasion to spot someone in the act of not doing their part to keep the parking area free of poop and none of those piles left for days are my dog’s.

I immediately called the apartment office, asking to talk to the author of the “citation.” For some reason, I found it galling that they didn’t bother to put it on official apartment stationery. As it was, it seemed to be a document that any resident with Notepad and a printer could generate. More irritating, though, was the assumption of guilt and the assurance of a “fine” if someone so much as accused me one more time.

The woman who answered the phone explained that the manager who wrote the memo had left on vacation for two weeks.

“Two weeks?” I laughed. “So, between now and the time she gets back, someone might lodge another phony complaint against me and I’ll end up fined?”

No, the woman said. Nothing further would be addressed until the manager’s return.

I can’t seem to shake this urge to start saving all the bags, labeling them with the date as I collect them, so I can deliver them as proof that I’m regularly cleaning up after my dog.

Think that’d go over well?

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  1. Anonymous
    February 15, 2011 at 8:23 am

    Hell, I would. Gift wrap them and offer them as evidence.

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