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3:31 p.m. - 2012-07-29
Dog Bites Boy. Mother Bites Ex-husband.

You know what I hate? Busting into a room and going, "BWA NAH! NOBODY expects the Spanish Inquisition!" and getting nothing but a blank stare.

Who? Who on Earth doesn't know this bit yet? Even if you're not a Python fan the Spanish Inquisition thing is simply out there. It's part of the pop culture lexicon like "Wassup" and pretty much every line of dialog from 'The Princess Bride'.

Unlike Monty Python gags, some things don't go on forever. I was speaking with Mick earlier about how the stores and TV commercials are all about Back To School already. He was in Target the other day and said they had a huge wall of pencils and backpacks right inside the door and it was depressing as all get out. I agreed it seemed to be rushing things a bit and told him how when I was a kid I knew summer was almost over when this little gem popped up in rotation during Saturday morning cartoons.

When the Levis guy showed up school wasn't far behind.

He might not know who the hell the Levis guy is, but Wolf's summer o' fun was rudely interrupted anyhow. Friday night he was bitten by a dog. At the county fair, no less.

On Friday the useless ex had taken Wolf off to the fair. The very least he could do after standing the kid up twice already when they'd made plans to go to Six Flags. Mick and I had hit a bit of a rough patch earlier in the week and by Friday evening had gotten to a slightly better place. At least one where the yelling had stopped and I'd been allowed to escape to the peace and privacy of my office. I was holed up in here with the a/c on high and the volume in my headphones turned even higher. I'd assumed Wolf was safe enough with his asshole father. The county fairgrounds are 20 minutes away and the fair itself a known entity- games, rides, junk food. What could go wrong? I allowed myself to relax into the cinematic comfort of a Barbra Streisand movie. Wolf had said he'd be home around 11:00. The movie ended at 11:15 and still no Wolf. I got up and went out to check that the front porch lights were on and the door was unlocked. The answering machine on the console in the front hall was blinking like mad. Messages from Wolf, each more frantic than the last. He'd been bitten by a dog and where WAS I? Shit. The time stamp on the last message was from 40 minutes earlier. I called Wolf but his phone went straight to voicemail. Ditto the ex's phone. I hurriedly pulled up the hospital's webpage and found the number for their ER. Yes, Wolf had been admitted. Yes, she'd transfer me to ambulatory surgery where they'd taken Wolf. Eventually I got to speak to my kid. The bite wasn't too bad. No, he hadn't been taken care of yet. Okay, sweetie, I'll be there soon, let me talk to Dad.

My useless, useless, infuriating ex-husband offered ZERO useable information, just his mumbling observations about how that type of dog shouldn't be allowed to run around loose. Christ. God, shut up, you idiotic git. I told the ex that even if Wolf was treated immediately he should STAY THERE. I was on my way and didn't want him leaving with Wolf while I was in transit to the hospital. Could he manage that much? Yes? Fine. I'd be there in 20 minutes.

I poked Mick awake and explained the situation. Fight or no fight Mick insisted on driving me to the hospital. Which he did, bless him. A careening headlong race that blew through stop signs and red lights and got me to the door of the ER in 9 minutes.

I was buzzed through the doors to ambulatory surgery and there was Wolf sitting up on a gurney straight back from the ward's door. When he saw me his face lit up like the sun. I hugged and kissed him and apologized for not getting his messages right away and promised that from now on when he was out of the house for any reason that I would take the handset of the phone with me into the office so I'd always hear it ring. I hugged him again, asked if he was okay, inspected his wounds which, thankfully, were minimal, his jeans had taken the brunt of it. Only after making sure my kid was reasonably okay and not too distressed did I acknowledge his dimwit father. I dragged him out of Wolf's hearing and asked for details. Had he spoken with the police? The fair's administrators? Had they found the dog? Had he done anything useful? Bluster, bullshit and meandering mumblings from the ex. Finally he coughed up the information that the dog belonged to one of the animal acts at the fair and that he'd gotten the phone number for the state police who'd handled the incident at the fairgrounds. That was it. Not the owner's name. Not the fair management. Not the EMTs who'd treated Wolf on the scene. Basically he'd ignored every single pertinent detail and made no contacts which would give me any help in who was ultimately responsible for the animal and the hospital treatment.

God. Could he have been any less irresponsible? Any less help? Could he have done any worse by his son?

No. Not really.

He did, however, make Wolf feel even lousier by making jokes about how the dog which had bitten him was infected with vampirism and werewolf disease. Slayed himself with that bon mot he did.

It was only that Wolf would see me do it and that my chances of a clean getaway were nil prevented me from beating the living shit out of my moronic ex-husband right there. Instead I took several deep cleansing breaths and then gave my son another hug. I assured him I'd take care of everything and all would be well.

The doctor, seeing an actual adult and responsible parent had arrived, came in and began doing for Wolf. She put a dressing soaked in a counteragent to dog saliva on Wolf's bite. She took Wolf's temperature and BP and then inspected his wounds. The bite marks were small. Two punctures and only one had done more than barely break the skin. Talking with me about what to expect and look for she quickly cleaned up Wolf's leg and sent in a nurse to administer an antibiotic and dress Wolf's bite mark. The nurse was good too. He gave me a handful of antibiotic gel packets and some clean gauze dressings. The doc came back with a sheaf of paperwork about treating dog bites and a prescription for Augmentin and dosing instructions. Wolf was released. I took my boy home. After a long hot shower and feeding him a fried egg sandwich I sent him to bed with the cheery assurances all would be fine and that he should get a good night's sleep.

Then I came in here and cried and shook until 3:30 in the morning.

Next day Mick took me to Malltown where I filled Wolf's antibiotic prescription and then went to the fairgrounds. I spoke to a fair administrator, who then tracked down the dog's owner, who came to meet with me and provide the dog's bona fides and her vet's name and phone number. The fairgrounds lady said she'd make sure the insurance paperwork would be submitted through their insurer and gave me her name and phone number too. The dog's owner, a nice young woman from South Carolina, apologized a bazillion times and asked if Wolf was really okay. The fair lady apologized too and offered the fairground's owner's info, saying he would be the one to speak to if anything else came up later on. Satisfied I'd done what I could, I thanked them both and left.

Wolf is fine. His ouchies are just wee bitty holes near his knee. His jeans are toast but he's taking his antibiotics and so far hasn't sprung a fever or started foaming at the mouth.

And his father? Mike hasn't stopped by or even called to find out how Wolf is doing.

Typical.


Thinking things too profane to commit to print, ~LA


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