“Come Together Right Now, Over Me”
by Laura Cafiso
A King Charles Spaniel is marching royally down the middle of Osborn Road (a busy Phoenix street), just west of 7th Avenue. What the hell? Dog literally looks like he’s leading a parade. Cars are following him because no one wants to hit him. I pull over and jump out to start chasing him, because he’s about to enter the middle of the intersection.
A lady in a red Honda Civic yells at me, “Are you trying to catch that dog?”
“Yes!” I yell back.
Car does a U-ie and turns east on Osborn to follow this dog. I run east across 7th Avenue, and a guy pulling out of the Mi Patio restaurant parking lot asks me if I want a ride the catch that dog.
“Yes!” I shout and jump in his car.
We realize the dog has turned down a side street. We turn and see the red Honda lady from the passenger side and a high school aged boy trying to corner this very fast, determined, and still-running dog. I jump out of the car and yell “Thanks!” to random guy. He leaves.
I run toward the dog, and we think we have him cornered, but he runs between us all. He gets back on Osborn, heading east IN THE MIDDLE OF THE STREET. I am running behind him in the middle of the street, Red Honda Civic Lady on one side of street and High School Dude on the other side.
A lady on a balcony with her own dog yells down, “Do you want some dog treats?”
“Yes!” I yell back.
I stop and she throws them down from her fourth-story balcony. I gather them up and go back to the middle of the street where a lady almost hits me with her car. All these other cars have slowed down, respecting the fact that three different people are trying to catch this pup. I am able to get ahead of the dog, and so are Red Honda Civic Lady and High School Dude.
So now the dog turns around and runs back the way we came, heading west on Osborn. Crosses the street and heads down another side street. Dog barely ever stops, like he’s on meth or steroids or something.
I am yelling, “What the hell? I am so fucking tired.”
A lady I do not know is running with me; she yells back, “I know,” laughing.
High School Dude is determined and barely takes a break before he resumes the chase. We corner this dog again on the street, and he stops to pee in a yard. This time I start calling for him and throwing treats at him. He ignores the treats and turns off the street. I go down the longest alley ever, behind this street. When I exit the other side of the alley, I’m panting. I turn back on the street hoping to bump into our friend, this invincible dog.
A white SUV slows down to talk to me, “Are you after that dog?”
“Yes,” I admit.
“They caught him and got him in the red Civic.”
I catch up to High School Dude, who is now with a middle schooler and an older man in flip flops.
“Well damn… are you a long-distance runner?” I ask him.
“No. Soccer player.”
“You’re awesome.” Fist bump.
“That little guy would not stop.”
This older man and young girl nod in agreement. I’m mystified. Who are they?
“Wait, are you with him?” I ask.
High School Dude says, “This is my dad and sister.” Oh!
“How did you catch him?” I’m dying to know because this was the most stubborn animal I’ve ever seen. Or chased for that matter.
High School Dude says, “I was running alongside of him and the Honda was driving alongside of him and I managed to pick him up and throw him in the Civic.”
“Damn! Did he try to bite you?”
“No, he was fine.”
“He looks like he’s well taken care of. Did he have a collar on him?” I ask.
“We can take him to Alta Vista pet clinic and see if he has a chip.”
“Yeah that’s what they said, too.”
“Dang, that woman almost hit you,” the middle schooler said. “Couldn’t she tell all the cars were going slow?”
“I KNOW!” I said.
We cross over to the Safeway parking lot where this little varmint is now sitting in the lap of Honda Civic Lady, just as calm as can be. His white fur is very clean and his nails are short. He is definitely someone’s prince (or princess?). We agree how cool it was to see everyone work together like that. We all thank each other and go our separate ways.
All these random people – various ages, ethnicities, genders, classes – just spent 45 minutes making sure this dog didn’t get mowed down in traffic. Hopefully the intrepid pup is safely back home by now. But for a short time, he managed to rally the most diverse group of people to come together. Ain’t that something!
As a girl, Laura Cafiso carried tall stacks of books out of the library, reading voraciouslywith the goal of becoming a writer. Her professional career has included stints as a public school teacher, television writer/producer, and nonprofit event planner/fundraiser. In 2009 Laura was nominated for a Rocky Mountain Emmy Award for her writing/production. In 2016, she launched her own professional writing services business. She has been published as a freelance writer for local papers, ghostwrites blog posts, and writes business communication for her real estate clients. Her first book is still in the brainstorming phase. Learn more at her website.