My dog finds no end of mysteries and distractions on our morning walks around the parking lot while I’m usually lost in thought. But given our impending and welcome exodus from downtown, I’ve been a little more aware of my surroundings lately. Well, a little (lot) more irritated by them is more accurate to say, but last Sunday morning, the dog’s fascination with the mundane infected me as well. Here’s what we saw.
The west side, between my building and the bushes that border the parking lot.
Beer bottles, not broken for a change, just beer bottles in the gutter. Not a beer worth mentioning.
Somebody’s abandoned parking ticket, first the yellow envelope and then the ticket eight feet away. Usually, the parking tickets issued in the wee hours of Friday and Saturday morning are torn up because drunkards have a magical power that makes parking tickets vanish from the DMV database when they tear them up. But this one seemed to have just floated off someone’s car.
A bro heading from his one-night-lady-friend’s ritzy loft to his beater car. I’d say he was doing the walk of shame, but since the bro uniform is a collared shirt, jeans, and sneakers no matter the occasion, men searching for their cars after a night of drunken sex with a stranger aren’t subject to the same stigma that women in their slinky dresses, stilettoes, and raccoon eyes are.
Walking in the opposite direction, another young man in office attire, carrying a brief case and a coffee, like he woke up confused and hadn’t yet realized it wasn’t Monday.
The north side, the pedestrian mall leading to Coors Field where the Colorado Rockies play
A few members of the Geriatric Asian Walking Club (so dubbed by me), but not the usual five or six. Those who did show were as dedicated as ever to walking their laps, undeterred by pooping dogs, erratic cyclists, or Rockies fans.
Rockies fans in the mandatory purple t-shirts, early arrivals for a 2:10 game. Undoubtedly holding tickets for reserved seats, but nonetheless fearful of the tragedy that would befall them if they don’t arrive five hours early.
The man from BCycle, collecting bikes to move from one station to another. I don’t know how they determine how many bikes need to go where and when and how often, but they do a damn fine job. I’ve never been left wanting wheels or a docking station.
A lone flyer from Howl at the Moon. None from Beta.
A new sight – a Bible verse written in chalk on the sidewalk. And then more. And then more. Messages of hope and inspiration and the love of a mythical man. This is a first. I almost want to stop and read them. The dog respects them enough not to pee on them.
The east side, where brush and a fence stop you from falling several feet onto 20th Street below
The usual – an assortment of cardboard boxes for lying on or lying under. No visible sleeping homeless, but the brush is dense. Sometimes you can glimpse feet, but that’s all. Which makes me glad because the opacity of the brush makes me think it’s an ideal place for the homeless to squat and do their business, an activity I would most definitely prefer not to see.
A United Club pass. Yes, despite my belief that some of the city’s residents probably defecate on the ground a mere two feet from where I was standing, I picked up the pass to check the expiration date. If you drink a lot in airports, a United Club pass is highly valuable. Expired three months ago.
South side, across from a sprawling sports bar that prioritizes basketball games over hockey
One homeless man sleeping, not defecating, on the other side of the street.
One middle-aged man, not homeless, in jeans running down the solid yellow line. No one chasing him.
The little white man at the crosswalk, signaling safe passage to no one.
My dog, sensing that our walk was drawing to a close, finally doing his business. And I, in my heightened state of awareness on this particular walk and feeling a little rebellious in the unusually silent morning, did not pick it up. That’s right, I, the woman who orders poop bags by the hundreds and hands them out to unknown fellow dog owners who “forgot” theirs, simply did not pick it up this time. But I have every time since.