Sunday, December 13, 2009

In which our neighborhood says, "Oh, go on with you. Get out of here."

Bob walked up to the corner store this afternoon and 10 minutes later came back in calling for me. A black lab-type dog that had been trotting down the street when he walked up the block was now lying in the road having fits.

Another neighbor came out and together we made the gesture of trying to give the dog the universally accepted home remedy for poisoned pets, which is milk and lemon juice, but the poor thing was way beyond actually ingesting anything, and only lasted another minute or two. We pulled it onto the sidewalk, but didn't really know what else to do.

The first thing I did was to go check on my friend's dogs, since I'm house/dog sitting for them this weekend. They were freaked out, having seen everything that had just happened, but they clearly hadn't been fed anything themselves. I checked the yard carefully for any tossed-in food, but didn't find any.

I suspect the classic milk & lemon juice antidote has some basis in reality for some poisons, but I seriously doubt it would have any effect against a substance that can kill a dog in five minutes flat. Nevertheless, in the name of doing something, I went ahead and squeezed a lemon into the dogs' dishes and poured in some milk, just in case whoever it was came along and tossed some more bait over the wall. I also explained to them that they should not eat anything unusual they might find lying around.

Another neighbor came out and asked what had happened, which I explained. She called the police or the municipality or whoever you're meant to call, but today is Sunday and I don't know how responsive they would be even during regular business hours. The dog is still lying there.

And THEN we were back in here, making Moravian stars and watching each other play the Harry Potter game, when Robin said she smelled something. I didn't notice it at first, and then it hit me. A burning insulation/plastic/electrical kind of smell. We checked everything in the house and didn't find anything.

The smell was stronger out in the garage, but fainter outside in the street. Eventually we concluded that the wind must have gusted the smell in, and the garage walls were keeping it from dissipating.

So we all went back to our various occupations for six minutes, until a pipe burst on the hot water tank in the utility space off the garage.

We got the water turned off out at the street, texted the landlady, and filled Bob's water bottle and...well, that's all really.

See, this could never happen at the new place, because it doesn't have hot water.


9:35 p.m. -- Bob and I are talking about plumbing and insulation and building codes and what kinds of fixing up the new place might require, when we hear a muffled crash from outside.

9:40 p.m. -- I'm on a kitchen stool, pulling down the still-drooping bits of plaster that didn't just fall off the porch ceiling.

Dear Universe:
We get it, we get it. We're going. How about you leave the place in decent enough shape that L. can re-rent it without feeling she needs to withhold part of our deposit, eh?


Bob December 13, 2009 10:18 PM  

By the way, I Googled that "milk as antidote" thing and found that it is indeed a stopgap when one has ingested some sort of heavy metal poison (such as mercury). Those poisons apparently work by attacking proteins in the body, and the milk protiens suck up all the bad... and then one induces vomiting to get rid of the "humours".

I don't know how one would get an animal to vomit, though... maybe that's what the lemon is for.

Lisa December 14, 2009 12:03 PM  

Please for all your sakes - run, don't walk - RUN!

Steve December 14, 2009 8:07 PM  

wow sorry about everything but the new place will be better.
hang in there!

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