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Tuesday, April 19, 2005

So that’s the kind of mom I’ll be

Seamus and I go for a walk at about the same time every morning. We see the same group of dogs every day. Some of the dogs are Seamus’ friends – McGruff the hound, a really sweet Chesapeake Bay retriever, a lab mix walked by a woman I call bag patrol (she’s completely obsessed with whether or not people are picking up after their dogs). Other dogs, he doesn’t like so much. There’s the little yippy white dog he wants to eat. The Great Dane who Seamus loves, but who doesn’t like him.

And then there’s Jasmine. She’s a black lab mix who hates pretty much every dog she meets, except for Seamus. She just loves Seamus, so her owner always wants to bring her over to say hello. The owner is trying very hard to socialize Jasmine properly and give her positive reinforcement. And Seamus likes her ok, but every once in a while, I get the feeling he’s saying “But she’s dorky. Why do I have to play with her?”

And I just make him say hello anyway, because it is the nice thing to do. I'm sure I'll do the same thing to my kids too, and make them hang out with the misfits and the underdogs. Is that mean? Will it be like Marge making Bart hang out with Raplh Wiggum on the Simpsons? Because I think the misfits and the underdogs are frequently more interesting than everyone else, and I'd like to enoucourage my (I know, currently non-existent ) children to give everyone a chance.