There's a puppy at my house who has decided that every hour of the night is the best possible time to scratch at any closed door, bark, and demand to be allowed to go outside.

THIS puppy.

I've been doing this thing where I try to reason with him and help him understand what night time is and what it means to have to get up early and go to a job and how I'm not as young as I used to be and how money doesn't grow on trees OMG I AM MY FATHER.

But he doesn't listen.

Last night he especially didn't listen.

It started at midnight. And happened again at 1:00. Then again at 2:00. Then at 3:15.

He jumped off of the bed and scratched at the door. I said many words at him. Some of them weren't nice. But then I decided that it would be easier to let him out to go potty OMG HOW MUCH PISS CAN THIS DOG HAVE than lie in bed not sleeping while he makes a ruckus.

But then. The 3:15 field trip.

This animal no longer wanted to go potty. He now wanted to engage in one of his favorite games. One which I like to call "sprint away from daddy while he screams obscenities in his underwear."

I could not get the beast to come inside.

I had had it.

So I decided that Mr. Duncan Doodle was going to find out what it meant to be an outside dog.

I yelled at him, "fine! You can just live out here now!" And I said it the same way Regina George was like, "you can walk home, bitches."

Not that Duncan is a female dog.

The moment I shut the gate he ran to it and put his little nose between the chain links, looking at me like "I thought we were a family" and normally this works and I'm willing to put myself through an insane amount of discomfort to wipe that look off his little puppy face but last night I was so tired and angry and angry at myself for being angry because OMG ELI THIS IS A 7-MONTH-OLD PUPPY WHO LOVES YOU AND JUST DOESN'T UNDERSTAND YET STOP TRYING TO REASON WITH HIM USING COMPLEX SENTENCES.

So I didn't let him manipulate me. And I walked inside.

I don't know what he did over the next hour-plus, but sometime around 4:30 he began howling so loudly that in my half stupor I legit thought he was turning into a werewolf. A moment later I came to my senses and realized that Mr. Demon Doodle had probably just woken up all of The Perfects (assuming they sleep) so I bolted out of bed, ran outside, screaming obscenities in my underwear all along the way, and retrieved the animal.

I lectured him on the way in about how back in my day all dogs were outside dogs.

When we got inside he was clearly pissed at me.

He climbed back onto the bed and lay there, growling with every. single. exhalation for the next twenty minutes. I occasionally sat up, grabbed him, and muttered an exhausted and intense Nancy Kerrigan level "WHHHHYYYYYY" into his face.

Eventually we both fell asleep. The alarm went off 12 minutes later.

I got up to go for a run because I'm doing that lately because I swear to you there is only one pair of pants in my entire home that I can currently wear with the top button done up and I've been wearing t-shirts to work for five straight months because I don't like how you can see my body between every button when I wear dress shirts now.

When I got back from my run, Duncan was sitting on the couch. Normally he flies into action when I enter the house, greeting me like I'm the Beatles and he's an angsty teen from 1963. But not this morning. He sat, staring at me. I stared right back at him. We both looked angry.

The staring went on for a fully eternity.

Then, finally, the silence was broken.

He was the first to speak.


So, yeah. I have a puppy for sale.

And now, please enjoy this week's Strangerville Short, an old story from It Just Gets Stranger:

~It Just Gets Stranger