How. Are. You. Really.

This is Sheriff Peanut Butter Brickle. Sit back. Relax. Make yourself at home. That means sitting in dog hair and listening to Deputy Digby howl. I need to have a talk with you. After I finish my breakfast at noon.

For most of my life, I’ve heard the persons ask each other, “how are you?” And I’ve always just heard persons answer with “Good. How about you?” But it seems to me that no one ever really answers the question at all. It’s like they’ve been programmed to say the same thing over and over.

But lately, I’ve heard some new answers. I’ve heard people tell each other that they are as good as anyone else. I’ve heard them say they are well so far. I’ve heard them say nothing at all in response. And I thought about it. What if everyone just took a day to say how they were really feeling? What would happen? What can happen?

So let me ask you, since you are sitting down. How. Are. You. Really. I want to know. We are family.

Maybe one minute you are worried. The next scared. The next minute, maybe you feel strong. Yes. You can sit here awhile until we run thru all those emotions. I’m here. Like I know you are there for me.

Since every psychologist charges by the hour, I do have to explain those fees up front. But I can promise it will be well worth it. Because we all want to be heard.

And once we give voice and acknowledgement to those feelings we are all having, we can figure out a way to not ignore them, but at the same time, not affect every minute of our lives.

Just like we have to clean our homes, we have to clean our minds with the good things. The positive things. Wash away the negative.

And even though I can’t guarantee when this Virus Monster will leave us all, I can guarantee that compassion and kindness should stay far longer. So ask someone how they are today. How they really are today. And be prepared to listen.

Sheriff Peanut Butter Brickle

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Rules For Staying Home With Your Dog

This is Sheriff Peanut Butter Brickle. I’ve had many jobs over the years.

I’ve been the bark of homeless animals everywhere. I’ve traveled around the country and visited 48 animal rescues and shelters.

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Yes. I’ve even embraced my not so dramatic roles of being the keeper of peace at many dog parks and keeping Deputy Digby Pancake from clearing out supplies from every pancake establishment. It’s a hard job to be law enforcement.

But this week, and maybe for many weeks to come, I’ve also been tasked with an assignment.

I’ve been asked to create some rules for persons staying home with their dogs. And our family has a lot of practice with this.

Even though our house is on wheels, we are still together most every day and hour of every day as we move places.

It’s come to my attention that some are not experienced in staying home full-time with their dogs.

And because of that reason, I have taken the task of creating some rules for you. It’s only to help you persons, however. Us dogs have been training for this scenario for our whole lives.

Rule #1

Stock up on treats.

We see you’ve been stocking up on toilet paper when you should have been buying treats. Since you will be home more, we will require additional sustenance to keep our energy up. It’s going to take a lot more treats than usual to cheer you up. We are willing to do the work for the right amount of pay.

Rule #2

Include us on your video conference calls.

We all know who is wearing pajamas or no pants from the waist down. I would suggest giving us some camera time to divert the attention away from your wardrobe choices.

Rule #3

Realize that nothing you have to do for work is more needed than taking us for a mid day walkies.

You need the break. We need the break. It’s part of our job to get you more active. Do you really sit at your desk that long all day? We have to change this.

Rule #4

Barking at random when you are on important business meetings will happen. Learn how to use the mute button.

We are not used to the critiquing of our daily habits. We keep your house safe and sound while you are gone. Let us continue to do our job. You may also bark with us if you so choose.

Rule #5

Do not interrupt our naps.

Naps are important for everyone. Take our lead. And don’t wake us up!

Rule #6

Don’t be sad. Don’t be negative.

Make us feel like we are doing a good job. Looking at the news every few minutes cuts down on petting us and giving us treats. Limit the amount of time you spend learning about bad news. Just see enough to keep safe. And to keep us safe.

Change is hard for anyone. And you may think that staying home is an inconvenience. But you will soon realize how much time that you really do stay away from us. Perhaps setting new priorities will be part of this learning experience for everyone.

Sheriff Peanut Butter Brickle

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