Hat. No Cat.

This is Deputy Digby Pancake. Normally, Sheriff Brickle would say he wears the pants in this family. And I have no problem with that.

Everyone always thinks that it is only me who is afraid of stuff. Gunshots. Loud noises. Thunder. Well, news flash…if I watched the news. Sheriff Brickle has his moments. And he had a big one.

There we were. Just relaxing at camp. I was fast asleep. That’s the only thing I do fast. Little did I know that my slumber would be rudely interrupted by Sheriff Brickle jumping up and trying to scare a fellow camper. With a hat on. It was on.

Now. You might think that the Sheriff looks harmless. You might think that he looks so sweet. Actually, no one thinks that. But you can better believe this as much as you can believe there is butter on my biscuits and maple syrup on my pancakes. There doesn’t always have to be a reason for the Sheriff Brickle freakouts. And even if there is a reason, he ain’t sayin. We may never know.

And I suppose maybe we don’t want to know. Because as this fellow camper walked up behind Girl Person who was sitting down on her computer thing, Brickle woke up and ran at the camper with a bark that would scare any camper. But especially one with a scary hat on.

Now. Some campers would be ok with a dog barking. Some campers are not. And this one was not. In fact, he was the opposite of ok. More like not. And as Girl Person apologized and explained that Brickle didn’t like hats, the camper looked at her like she was crazy. And he said under his breath, I don’t have a cat. Girl Person said a little louder…you have a HAT. And he said hat? Not cat? No. No. No. my head hurt.

Neither of those things would have not made Brickle bark. And in fact, I knew this man with a hat and not a cat probably didn’t care for dogs so much. And Brickle didn’t change his mind on that. His mind also was not changed the next time he walked by. Or the time after that.

Although Brickle wasn’t sorry for his feelings, well, neither was camper hat man. And Girl Person thought about it. It was one thing to try to explain his dislike of hats. But it was another for him to misunderstand her explanation. Have you ever tried to explain something and made it worse? Did you ever feel like you weren’t being understood? So you stopped trying to explain? You stopped caring?

No one is perfect. We all have our days and our reasons for feeling the way we do. Sometimes, someone may not understand us. And we get upset, we get mad. But do we try to understand others? It’s a give and take. Showing love and compassion and understanding to strangers may be our biggest test of love.

Brickle will never like hats. And he has his reasons. The camper hat man will never take off his hat. He has his reasons too. But the campground can hold them both. And there’s room for everyone. Hat. Cat. Whoever.

-Deputy Digby Pancake

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