Our 14-year-old puppy, Laci, loves table food and I love sharing it with her. She loves bits of medium-rare steak as much as she loves the last corner of the tortilla chip or the last bit of a chocolate-chip cookie with no chocolate chip. She sits quietly, patiently waiting for me to finish my yogurt, hopping down from her couch-back perch when she sees me licking the spoon. She loudly laps at the bottom of the cup while I hold it for her.
She crunches a chip forever but swallows meat without a blink. Did you even taste that fajita, Laci? She replies with the same resting-bitch-face she gives for a warm bowl of sticky rice. Why should I give her steak if she has the same reaction to the last grain of rice.
This morning, Jemma made me three hearty chorizo, potato and egg tacos. I even got the extra she makes even though the girls have been at college for months now. I was full after the second taco, but plowed through the third. Why stop now? While I was eating, I gave Laci some bits of potato, some bits of chorizo, and then the last pinch of tortilla with nothing between it. All the while, she's content to sit by the table looking up to me. Waiting. She’s too cute.
She's been deaf for a few years now and I'm always happy to share the last bit, then show her my open hands to signal "All Gone." She then knows she can go back to laying on her couch-top like Snoopy on his house, as long as my hands are empty. She looks back one last time making sure I'm not holding out.
If I'm eating grapes or chocolate, she sits there with the same face not knowing she's going away empty-pawed. She never knows if she's getting chicken breast or pizza crust from my plate. She cannot see what's on my plate, and she's happy to get anything I give her. Besides, I can't give her too much or she'll get sick, and I don't want to have to clean-up that mess. I really do know what’s good for her and what’s not. She gets good scraps.
I ponder this as I laboriously finish the last bit of breakfast. I’m stuffed and I deem she's had enough, too. It's either finish it myself or throw it away.
These are the only times I know what it feels like to be a 'haves' to her 'have-nots'. Now I understand how the ruling class of our country truly feel. It's for our own good, and since we're not getting a seat at their table, nor will we ever get first dibs, we'll just have to jump on the table if we wanna see what's for lunch.