The other night while my son and I were reading a Clifford The Big Red Dog book that he'd picked up at the school library, I had a strange thought.
And it only took me about 35 years to come up with it, too.
You see, when I was young, I was a big fan of Clifford. The first Clifford book I remember reading was Clifford's Halloween. Yes, like my son, I'd always liked Halloween, so despite his many different adventures, I'll always think of Clifford as this gigantic dog dressed up in a giant sheet as a ghost for my favourite holiday.
Alexander loves tales of Clifford as a big red dog but also the stories of him as a small puppy. As an adult, I find the small red puppy tales more interesting and amusing.
But the other night, while we were reading Clifford Gets A Job, a book in which there's a bit of reality introduced into the imaginative concept of the oversized dog -- the fact that it takes an incredible amount of food to keep this dog properly fed -- I wondered about another thing I'd never thought of before.
So where the heck does this big red dog go poo?
And what the heck kind of horrible job would it be picking up after THAT?
Where would the family put it? And even if Clifford buried it, there'd be these piles larger than their house. Imagine the smell. Imagine the complaints the neighbours would make. They're in their backyard, entertaining the in-laws, having a wonderful BBQ and then Clifford goes into the backyard next door to relieve himself and that's the end of the tranquil happy family BBQ.
I started picturing people out on walks with their dogs carrying around a small plastic bag to pick up after them. Taking Clifford for a walk, you'd need a dump truck to follow along to clean up after him.
I know, it's a series of low-brow thoughts, but something I'd never thought of until the other night.
And my wife would be so proud of me. It was a rare occasion where I had a perplexing thought like this and I did NOT share it with my son. Yes, for a change, I kept the bizarre thoughts inside.
But it's been two days now and the thought hasn't escaped my mind. So I had to get it out and write about it here.
Perhaps I take children's stories just a little too seriously sometimes . . .