Corporal O’Malley Reporting for duty

DOg Park sign


I hate being unemployed. Can’t bloody stand it. It’s not that I have trouble filling the time. I got that nailed. And maybe if I was an independently wealthy millionaire with nothing but time to go to the gym, conjure up new blog posts, hang out with my sponsor and go to a meeting, well, at least I would have put forth whatever the effort required to become said millionaire. Then those rewards would be hard fought and earned. I would deserve them. But as it stands, I’m just an unemployed (and so far, unemployable) guy with way too much time on my hands.

So I walk in the park.  A lot, these days.  And again, I feel an almost guilty pleasure in strolling through the park at 3 in the afternoon and marveling at the fall colors. It’s like I hear this deafening boom over all creation screaming at me.

“Hey Jackass! Why aren’t you at work? You know there’s far better things for you to be doing than walking through the park at 3 in the afternoon and marveling at the fall colors. Get a job.”

This week I even got a couple audiobooks from the library and put them on my IPod. At least that way I’m doing something useful with that time, right? Wrong. See, I love reading and I especially love reading dog books. And I recently got the audiobook by the guy who played Piederman on Seinfeld (Y,know, Elaine’s boss at the catalog with the awesome voice) and his thoughts on his dogs and life and such. So it’s still escapism. I have started reading my Big Book again and contemplating really getting back into the fellowship of AA. So I’m at least trying to insert tasks into my day that aren’t particularly enjoyable (I am lapsed Catholic, after all).

But today, I decided to go to a different park. The Hanscom Dog Park. And I was really impressed. It looked one of the rock-star dog parks I knew when I lived in Seattle. There’s only two dog parks in Omaha, which I think is simply a travesty. I mean seriously, if there’s one thing we got in Nebraska, it’s a whole lotta land. And we just got the first dog park a few years back. I can’t even really call it a “dog park”.  More like a “dog lot”. Just a big open space at one of the city parks in Omaha. Except when it rains. Then it’s a “dog swamp”. I haven’t actually heard any reports of someone’s Bichon or Maltese actually down into the muck and disappearing. And I don’t know that I ever will. I mean, come on. What would be more embarrassing than bringing a lawsuit against the City of Omaha for your turd dog suffocating in mud on city property? Nothing, I submit.

But the Hanscom Dog Park is pretty cool. Me and my mom and met there today with Seamus O’Malley McGintis McGee Buttercup Riley O’Doul in tow. He did pretty well at the park, I must say, not being totally acclimated to the concept of the dog park. But he started no fights and seemed anxious to explore everything. I told my mom shortly after they got there that I had decided Seamus’s rank should be that of Captain (I give dog’s ranks. Daisy was the L’il Admiral. There was a dog at Petsmart named Sarge and it fit him aptly so I let him keep it. I know I’ve named a dog The General in the past but who that dog was escapes me, so I guess that one is back in the pool.) But honestly, Captain doesn’t fit him. He just doesn’t look like a Captain. He’s more of Corporal. Especially in Mom and Da’s house. I mean, a rank of no real importance or authority (I mean seriously, wasn’t Kilnger’s main role in M*A*S*H like, delivering mail?) But a rank nonetheless. The only other Corporal I can think of was Corporal Hicks from the movie Aliens. And he was the guy in charge of the technically military operation only after all the other officers were dead. You see my point. He’s Corporal Seamus.

Seamus Mom Dog PArk

He got along with all the other dogs at the dog park, though there weren’t many there and the ones who were vacated as soon as it approached Nebraska Husker game time. It’s ridiculous. If you go around the city of Omaha during a Husker game, it looks like a scene from Walking Dead. Just a few people meandering around the city. Seriously, if you’ve got Christmas shopping to do, you could do a lot worse than flying to Omaha and doing it during a game. No lines at all.

Seamus Dog Park

With only a few people there, me and Mom found ourselves talking about her book. I don’t mean the book she wants to write. I mean the book that she has written and already published a copy through Amazon’s publishing entity. She’s spent the last week researching how to get it out through Amazon. I’ve seen a copy and it’s, well, it’s a book! I’m telling you the woman amazes me. It’s about her life raising my sister with autism. My mom is also a former teacher of special ed children and the book is a lot about her struggles in talking to people on the other side of the table trying to explain my sister and what her needs are. As you may know from reading this blog, that would be particularly difficult considering determining my sister’s educational and occupational needs and qualifications would be kind of like determining how to land the Apollo 13 spacecraft using a rudimentary pulley system, a deck of cards and some packing tape.


Mom is going to have a book signing party for the release of the book and it’s been determined that friends and loved ones like me, my brother and sister-in-law would be responsible for keeping Liz focused on doing the actually signing of the books because, I mean this when I say, keeping my sister in check at a book-signing party for her own book (she’s convinced she wrote it which, in a way, I guess she has) will be like trying to contain the Colorado River with a Styrofoam cup. December will be when the book comes out.


So after a little time spent briefing Mom on my job search and other incidentals, I took Seamus home. I can walk around my own park at the 3 in the afternoon and look at the fall colors again tomorrow.



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