Crackers, Rainy Days, And Finger Painting

I love the rain and always have. There’s something inherently soothing about listening to rain and going out for a walk when it’s coming down, as long as it’s not pouring so hard you’ll get drenched in a couple minutes. When I was a much younger girl (about 7-8 from my vague recollection), I loved walking around the yard barefoot when it was raining and the water levels began to build up. It was so cold and wet and the ground was so soft and muddy: walking around in the puddles barefoot made me feel alive at a time when I was sadly programmed not to desire such “sinful” things as feeling alive or loving life in general. I know, it’s incredibly fucked up to indoctrinate a child with the belief that they shouldn’t enjoy life, probably a huge contributing factor to my present atheism. Some of my happiest childhood memories (AKA the ones I haven’t blocked out) involved rain, and I still like rainy days in my blissful adulthood.

My little rat terrier mix, Crackers, does NOT share my affinity for the rain. He loves going for walks, but not when it has rained recently and the grass is wet. I call him Mr. Prissy Pants whenever my husband and I are attempting to walk the dogs together but he absolutely refuses to go on the wet grass, as if he just can’t stand to get his paws wet. It’s pretty funny actually. We’ll approach the grass on the sidewalk and the moment he realizes the grass is wet, he plants himself and refuses to move. From his reaction, you’d think I was trying to drag him into a fiery death pit, not onto a slightly damp lawn.

As much as I like the rain, I can’t help but relate to little Crackers. Another vague childhood memory for me is kindergarten and finger painting, which was something I did NOT enjoy. When I was a kid, I hated getting my hands dirty, and finger painting sounded horrible to me. I thought nobody in their right mind would want to put their hands in paint. I was very upset and I screamed and cried until they didn’t make me put my fingers in the paint. Is there something so wrong about using a paintbrush? So I kinda get where Crackers is coming from with his “no rainwater on my precious paws” policy. It’s his preference, and I won’t force it on him because I certainly would’ve been traumatized if the school had forced me to finger paint. I guess we’re all prissy in our own way.

You’re alright, Crackers. Just keep doing you and I’ll be here to support you and simultaneously make fun of you. I love you, my prissy little puppy dog, even if you don’t want to go on rainy walks with me.

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