In full-throated summer, colorful, chaotic farmers markets offer a hot weather oasis where you can shop for locally produced, organically grown corn while your dog is torn apart by vicious, unsupervised hellhounds.
While such incidents are common, no one is to blame except municipal leaders, irresponsible pet owners, the National Farm Community, the National Farm Hired Hand Community, and whoever was assigned to refresh the public water bowl.
To be fair, farmers market organizers try to protect dogs and their Giants by establishing a list of rules of pet behavior, then posting them on event signs and websites. Often these guidelines feature humorous titles like, “Doggie DoDo’s and Don’ts,” sport cartoonish canine images, and are loosely based on the American Articles of Confederation ratified in 1781 by 13 states, but only three dogs.
Hoping to appeal to the broadest swath of market attendees, these rules walk a fine line between threatening and dangerous, often leading with such thoughtful headlines as, “Don’t make us shoot your dog!” or “Hey! I got yer’ retractable leash, right HERE!”
Best to avoid those farmers markets. And towns.
On entering the market after proving to security that your empty tote bag is, indeed, empty, your dog is an American citizen, and you are not assigned to refresh the public water bowl, prepare yourself to experience a festival that is equal parts Mardi Gras and the Running of the Bulls. Unfortunately on the same street.
GIANT 1: “Wow! Check out those melons!”
GIANT 2: “My God, Dave, she’s young enough to be your daughter!”
GIANT 1: “The watermelons! Look at the watermelons!”
GIANT 2: “Ohhhh… Yeah, let’s get a couple.”
BUDLEIGH: “Can we live here?”
BRISBY: “I wanna live over there! By that big table where they’re dropping stuff.”
BUDLEIGH: “I can make any table drop stuff.”
GIANT 2: “Damnit, Budleigh. Heel! HEEL! Dave, grab my melons!”
GIANT 1: “Hahahahaha!”
GIANT 2: “Great! Well, now we have to get more melons. Preferable from the other side of the market.”
BUDLEIGH: “Yummy melon!”
BRISBY: “Yes, tastes very local. And organically grown.”
STRAY PIT BULL/ROTTWEILER/DOBERMANN MIX: “Hi, guys!”
STRAY PB/R/B MIX: “I’m gonna kill you!”
BRISBY: “But there’s all this melon!”
STRAY PB/R/B MIX: “Kidding! Hey, see that guy over there? He’s handing out cheese.”
BRISBY: “Is…is he God?”
STRAY PB/R/B MIX: “Don’t know. But if we trip him with your leashes, he’ll spill his cheese. Then I can kill him!”
STRAY PB/R/B MIX: “Sorry! Reflex. I meant eat his cheese.”
BRISBY: “Worth a try.”
GIANT 1: “Budleigh! Brisby! Get away from that dog!”
GIANT 2: “Come back here! Heel! HEEL!”
STRAY’S OWNER: “Hey! What’re ya’ doin’ to Kong?”
GIANT: 1: “Listen, buddy. Your…Kong’s running loose. He should be leashed.”
STRAY’S OWNER: “Yeah? Well, I got yer’ leash, right HERE!”
BUDLEIGH: “Seriously? He calls you Kong?”
STRAY PB/R/B MIX: “Yeah. It’s a Giant thing.”
Read more Sleeping between Giants. Laugh, share, repeat.