Walking Miss Daisy

June 28, 2004

Last night, while I was walking Daisy, my Ipod ran out of juice. It was a little different with just the sounds of the night rather than the soundtrack that Ipod chooses for me.

Daisy and I usually walk at 9:00. I sometimes get asked why we walk at such an odd hour. Well, here are the reasons:

  1. Usually, the after work walkers have to suffer through weather that is hotter than tarnations. Later is cooler.
  2. You wouldn't know it looking at me, but once in a while, I work out after work. Factor in a workout, or catching up at work, or a stop at the grocery store, or something like that, fix dinner, eat, clean the kitchen, etc. Now, it's already nine, without having had to try to delay.
  3. The other foot traffic is really light that time of the night. This means that there is that much less of the dog-tug-of-war, where two dogs pull towards each other (and the center of the street), while their humans pull and try to keep them away. I don't care for the dog-tug-of-war. That's just me.
  4. I admit it: since there are fewer people, I don't scoop the poop. I know, I'm a crappy neighbor (pun unintentional). But hey, I don't like picking up dog shit. And hell (addressing my irate neighbors now), at least dog shit is good for your grass. Justify the cigarette butts and potato chip wrappers you throw out your windows into my yard.
  5. You know those magazine and TV advertisements where the people dance to their own sounds while listening to their Ipod? Imagine how dumb they would look doing that in real life. I do this. It's fun. And, it's best that I not be seen by a lot of others.
A rather Gothic looking dog walk start and destination, as seen at 9:00 in the summertime.

Anyway, when the music died last night, I was struck by the sounds. The oddest one was the distant blare of a television. I've seen movies -- usually set in the 1950s -- where people have their windows open on summer nights, and you catch faint strains of their television or radio through their screen windows. Last night was the first time that I really heard this in real life. I don't even remember hearing it when I was a kid. Rain had cooled it down some, but it is still the end of June in Louisiana. Were the people inside that cheap, or was their air conditioner broken? I'm betting on cheap, although we may never know for sure.

The other sounds were the frogs. There were a zillion frogs out enjoying the muddy post-rain. The noise was loud, jumbled, crazy, from the ground, from the trees, from the whole 360 degree circle around us. The ones from the trees sounded like two creaky chirps back to back -- like two blasts of a ray gun, or maybe like a rocking chair that squeaks at the top of the rock back.

One type of frog sounded like a high-pitched machine gun. Those frogs never needed to take a breath. Their noise just played steadily. How could they do this?

Anyway, I would have never noticed any of this noise had the music kept playing. It took an unusual act of battery negligence to get to that point, so it may be months or years before I hear what I dry night sounds like.