Achieving Balance and Harmony

DOG TRAINING

Guide Dog School 6: The Blue, and the White... and the Brown

By Brian Fischler

“I am a nightmare walking psychopath talking, king of my jungle, just a gangster stalking.” You have got to love that Ice-T song from the movie “Colors.” So you ask what made me think about that song and movie from 1988? I found out tonight that every guide dog school has their own colors. Guiding Eyes for the Blind’s colors are blue and white, and the colors are on Nash’s harness and the school’s logo (which is embroidered on the harness, not the dog.)

Of course I was the one who had to ask the trainer, “What if we live in a bad neighborhood with a gang whose colors are blue and white?” Or even worse, what happens if I am giving Nash his signs and I happen to flash a rival gang’s signs? Hey, I live in New York City, these things happen!

We had two more walks on the same route today. For our afternoon walk we were just with our dogs and partner, as the trainers hung back a block, giving us our most independence to date. Nash was pretty good for the most part as he hit eight of nine street crossings real good.

He did slow down a bit during one intersection, and kept looking back as the woman who trained him was around somewhere. That did not thrill me, as in New York City you have to get across the street as quickly as possible, but I’m sure as Nash and I grow accustomed to each other these things won’t happen.

What are you to do when the thing you have dreaded the most finally arrives? Tonight’s lecture was the poop pick up talk. Yes, blind people have to pick up their dog’s poop, and yes, I said poop. I can’t believe how many times I have used the word poop since I have been here.

This Saturday is the day we will have to begin picking up our dog’s poop. Up to now, our trainers have cleaned up after our dogs. Ugh, this could be the first weekend in the history of weekends that I am not looking forward to. I basically only have three more days of enjoyment left in my life.

I am kidding, but I am really not looking forward to having to constantly pick up dog poop. This is the biggest reason that I have not gotten a guide dog before now. During the poop pick up lecture, one of my classmates asked, “Will we have time to shop for clothes pins before Saturday?” That had everybody in hysterics. Since everyone always stares at the blind guy, I guess putting a clothes pin on my nose while picking up after Nash really wouldn’t draw any extra attention.

Part One | Part Five


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