Keep the Bag
Mark Sanders

About a year ago my wife and I were enjoying an impromptu picnic of deli sandwiches while watching the evening walkers stroll by in Central Park. Nothing particularly spectacular passed by our bench as we quietly consumed our dinner and enjoyed the mild weather. Every so often a dog would give us a curious glance to see if there was any chance of getting a treat. As veterans of urban picnicking we knew this was all part of the ritual. That is until a canine, of a breed I don't remember, took a dump one foot from my shoe.

In horror the owner tried to drag the dog away mid-poop (which only made matters worse). After a good minute of work on the dog's part, an awkward silence held the air. I guess during that time the owner had a similar swell of thoughts as I did about how to get expediently away from this spot. But one look at our plastic shopping bag gave her an idea.

She requested and we graciously gave her the sack. With her pooch anxious to move on she tried to orchestrate a classic dog waste encapsulation and removal. I'm not sure if it was her hurry or nerves that fouled her technique, but she ended up smearing as much turd on the pavement as she picked up. More anxiety and ultimately a hearty apology followed as well as her exit.

With 18 inches of ground in poop next to my shoe, we decided to eat the rest of our sandwiches at a different park bench.