Jewish World Review August 11, 2004 / 24 Menachem-Av, 5764
A place to roll on the floor
Laura said, "Let's go play with puppies."
If you're a city resident,
there is no place you can really go to play with puppies or kittens, or baby
rabbits or chickens, for that matter. We have two black cats, one very old and
one very funny, but I could understand Laura's yen. She wanted to get down on
the floor and play with puppies, an immensely therapeutic and entertaining
I suggested that we might go to the zoo, and we did, but it wasn't the
same. The animals were hot and bored and a lioness came pretty close and rubbed
herself against the bars just like a kitty and it would have been nice to
scratch her behind the ears and roll around on the floor.
Some people in
the city have puppies and even lions, but we don't know any of them and,
besides, you can't just call up anybody and say you're coming over because you want
to play with their pets.
That's when it occurred to me that somebody could
make a mint (I'm ever practical in the doldrums of summer) by opening a pet
center where people in need of instant puppy therapy could go. This center would
have baby animals of all kinds, from lambs to chicks, and you could go for a 1/2
hour ($35) or a full hour ($50).
The therapeutic benefits of playing with
animals have been well documented. There is a successful program to pair
prisoners with puppies. City people in the summer are very much like prisoners. This
pet center, called, by the way, PETRUSHKA, where being in the doghouse can
feel like being in a cathouse" (or something like that), could do a bang-up
business 24/7, and the franchise opportunities are unlimited. Failing that, people
with puppies and kittens should put up a sign in their windows, "play with
pets," and passersby could just drop in.
I thought about putting an ad in the
paper, looking for "people with pets who don't mind strangers coming by to
play," but I thought better of it. Such ads can easily be misread. Years ago, my
friend Hunce, who had a bull in need of company (he was living in the country),
placed an ad that said, "Boy cow looks for same." Hunce was gay and he wanted
his pet bull, Ocean Peace, to find a companion of the same sex, but people
misinterpreted the ad and all kinds of people called looking for kinks. There is
so little innocence left!
There are also some kinds of pets, like snakes
and tigers, that are better off left alone. Look what happened to Bobo, the
tiger a cop shot in Florida! Bobo just wanted to play, but the cop didn't.
any case, Laura's sudden wish of child-like tenderness went unfulfilled, and
until my brilliant idea is realized by a smart entrepreneur, we'll have to do
with our ancient felines who'd rather sleep than play, and hope that someone
answers this ad.
Enjoy this writer's work? Why not sign-up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.
JWR contributor Andrei Codrescu is a poet, commentator and author, most recently, of "Wakefield". (Click HERE to purchase. Sales help fund JWR.) Comment by clicking here.
07/22/04: The reading catastrophe
03/17/03: The talking carp
01/24/03: Old commies and bohemians never say die
01/02/03: Larry's dream
12/10/02: Notes on the mustache
09/11/02: 9/11 for Allen Ginsberg
06/20/02: Giving insurance to a young life
04/18/02: Advertisers and poets exchange places
03/21/02: Sacred ritual
02/22/02: Invasion of the Nanny-seekers
02/11/02: EMMA GOLDMAN, COME HOME!
02/08/02: The body of liberty
© 2004, Andrei Codrescu.