Day 12: Favorite Quote


There are two quotes that have been rattling around in my head since the first time I heard them.

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” – Margaret Meade. This is actually on my fridge. It’s so easy to become overwhelmed and feel like you’re the only one who cares when you’re really passionate about something that really only a small percentage of the world’s population care about. Being a runner, being agnostic, a vegan, an animal lover, a supporter of equal rights – all of these things are such important parts of my life and it sometimes feels as if they’re not important to anyone else. There are days when I think it would be so much easier to go back to the days when I didn’t think about all these things and just mindlessly plod along as so many people do. Then I remember Meade’s wise words and they give me the hope I need.

“What is a soul? It’s like electricity – we don’t really know what it is, but it’s a force that can light a room.” – Ray Charles. I’ve heard this attributed to a couple different people but I like to think Ray Charles is responsible for it. I just like it, pure and simple.
This morning, the little guy pictured here followed me and Theta along on our run and wound up coming home with us. We have feelers out to see where his home is, but judging from his condition I’m concerned that he was dumped. A lot of people will tell you that animals don’t have souls. That they’re somehow lower life forms than we. I concede that they are different. They have different priorities and a different understanding of how the world works and their place in it than do humans. But there is no doubt in my mind that this sweet boy has a soul, feels very similar emotions to those that we experience, and that he is capable of love. Or at least something dogs feel that aligns with our definition of love. How anyone could abandon another living soul is beyond me. As the “smarter” and “better” species, it is our responsibility to at the very least do no harm.
We’ll take this guy to our vet in the morning and get his nails clipped and have him checked for a chip. If we find his owners we’ll let him go home, and if no one claims him we will take care of him. It’s the least we can do.

Day 2: Looking at a Picture


Today was dark, rainy and cold in Tulsa. This time of year is typically very slow around my office, and today was a prime example. I normally work until 6, but since we had everything done early I left at about 4:30. Sadly, it was already pretty dark even that early in the day.

At home, instead of the usual happy lab dance, I was greeted by a forlorn Theta who refused to leave the couch. He was sad because his playmate (we kept a friend’s dog for about a week) had gone home and he’d had to spend all day alone. That and he’s surprisingly fastidious when it comes to keeping his paws dry, so he was bummed about the weather too.

There’s rain, and there’s rain. Here in Oklahoma, we tend to have weather in extremes. Wind forms tornadoes, rain forms floods and storms, we don’t really get snow so much as ice, and if it gets hot in the summer the temperatures will break into the triple digits for weeks on end. It’s rare that we enjoy a mild spring or a gentle, refreshing rain.

Days like this make me think of the Pacific northwest. I’ve only visited once, and we have another trip on the books for later this year, but it’s always pulled me. The rain there is like something I spent many years reading about, but didn’t fully understand until I visited. It’s this gentle, intermittent force that makes everything so green and lush as to look fake. Flowers bloom in an astonishing array of colors, and hold up to the water just fine. It’s not ever a pounding, relentless deluge but just a fine mist of rejuvenation. I grew up in the mountains of the southwest, where a good rain was only good if it stopped before it became a force of destruction. It was appreciated while it lessened the dust and quenched the fields, but soon it would wash loose rocks and boulders and cause more damage than relief. To see the beauty of a real, life giving and sustaining rain in the Pacific northwest is something I feel privileged to experience, and that I long to see again.

Needless to say, the weather was not conducive to outside activity so some extra time spent writing and planning had to suffice. Tomorrow there will be no excuse for missing spin class and yoga at the gym, and a good muddy hour or two at the dog park for Theta, who will gladly put up with muddy paws if he gets to play with the big dogs.