On my way to the Metro the other morning I saw, through the rusted gate of my neighbor’s chain link fence, a German shepherd resting on the stoop. It caught my eye because it was so large, its body spilling off the sides, legs stretched across the top two steps.
I stood there watching it, when I was suddenly overcome with the urge to say hello. I felt that since we were both incapable of communicating with our surroundings we would be able to understand each other.
But when I introduced myself, and squeezed my arm through the gate so it might come and shake my hand, the dog scarcely perked its ears, and when it saw I held no treat it did not give me a second glance. It dropped its head into its paws and yawned, revealing rows of yellowed teeth, the black spots on its tongue.