I’m warning you right now that this whole post is going to sound made up. But let me tell you something: the truth really is stranger than fiction.
Okay, Glasgow, 2010. It was a weekend and I had some errands to run in city centre. I decided to text my BFF Margaret to see if she wanted to come along, since we basically did everything together.
A: Hey! Heading into town in a bit. Wanna come with?
M: Aww, I’d love to, but I’m just on my way home and a Skype date with my mom soon.
A: Okay, no worries! Have fun! Say hi from me!
Then I continued to get ready. A few minutes later, I received another text.
And I was super confused. “Poop” isn’t a word Margaret just throws out there frequently. I stared at my phone. Was she saying, “Poop,” as in, “Oh, shucks – wish I could come along”? I decided to go with that interpretation. I typed a reply.
A: I know, it sucks you can’t come, but let’s go for chai tomorrow!
And her reply was:
M: Sorry! I just ran into my neighbour and Jack and he must have texted you!
Margaret had a downstairs neighbour – a lovely old man – with an adorable dog named Jack. (Unless the neighbour’s name was Jack. I can’t remember now. But it doesn’t really matter.)
I stared at my phone again. What the fuck? Who was this old man? Either he was crazy or he had a twisted sense of humour. But wait, why was he holding Margaret’s phone to begin with?
A: Why would your neighbour have your phone? And why did he text me the word “poop”?!
M: What?! No, I was petting Jack and he texted you!
WAIT A SECOND.
A DOG texted me the word “POOP”?!
My brain basically exploded. I couldn’t decide what was weirder: her old man neighbour texting me “poop,” or his dog doing it. Alone in my flat, I literally fell onto the ground laughing.
So naturally, I texted this:
A: AAAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! How on EARTH did Jack text me “Poop”?! AHAHAHAHAHAHAH!
(Sometimes I’m a very obnoxious caps-lock texter. Deal with it.)
And then Margaret must have really looked down to see the text she sent me.
M: WTF?! I don’t know?! He was sniffing my phone! That’s SO WEIRD!
And we laughed and laughed and laughed and laughed. And even when I think about it now, like two and a half years later, I still laugh.
BUT WAIT. THERE’S MORE.
Oscar and Lucy, being the fur-children of a writer, are obviously very used to being around my laptop. Sometimes they see me open my laptop and they go, “Oh, sweet, time to sleep next to mom like perfect puppies!” Sometimes they give me dirty looks when I’m on my laptop and they’d rather I be cuddling them. And sometimes they decide they’re going to actively pretend that my laptop doesn’t exist. That’s when they sit on it, jump over it, and/or walk across it in an effort to get my attention.
One day, when Oscar was still pretty little – probably not even a year old – he decided to stand on my keyboard. I was mid-editing a document for a freelance job, so my first thought was OH MY GOD DON’T ERASE MY WORK. Once I wrestled him off the computer, I looked up to make sure my Word document was still intact.
And there it was, on my screen: “poop.”
A few months later, he would also nose-text the word “poo.”
Look, I’m not saying dogs are gonna take over the world, but dogs might take over the world.
Also, they’re clearly as obsessed with poop as we humans think they are.