A Survival Story

The Suburban Survivalist

There are days when I should cover myself in bubble wrap and sit in the corner.

image from molly via flickr creative commons

image from molly via flickr creative commons

My morning routine is just that, routine. I wake without the aid of an alarm clock because I have something more efficient than any flashy LED box. I have an Alarm Corgi.

At daybreak, the Alarm Corgi wakes and jumps on my chest, providing chest compressions to assist my heart in starting for the day. Granted, Emma the Alarm Corgi is only twenty pounds and the compressions are startling, but not of rib cracking intensity.

I will pretend that I did not feel the Alarm Corgi CPR and keep my eyes shut. After a few more chest compressions, the Alarm Corgi sets its “snooze” and lays on my chest staring at me, daring me to open my eyes.

When you crack an eyelid you see a Corgi nose – game over.

Emma the Alarm Corgi

Emma the Alarm Corgi

So, the Alarm Corgi wakes me. I stumble out of bed and throw on some clothes, because the reason the Alarm Corgi goes off is not to shower me with puppy love. No, she has to go outside and pee. Now.

Wifey is sleeping the “Sleep of the Innocent” and is unaware of the Corgi Alarm. Tanner the Sleepy Corgi is not amused at the younger Alarm Corgi’s “Buttcrack of Dawn” approach. Nonetheless, Tanner joins in the morning pee procession downstairs, through the kitchen and out the back door.

It’s cold, grey and foggy. That misty soup of a fog that sticks to your skin, you know the kind, that fog every B-Grade horror flick includes as set dressing. I’m in a tee shirt, jeans and I’m cold. I shift from foot to foot, silently urging the Corgis to do the pee thing so I can go in and start some coffee.

(I do not do well without my morning coffee. That may be a bit of an overstatement. I do not function without coffee. Do not approach me, before I’ve been caffeinated. But, I digress…)

The morning routine demands that the Corgis go in for breakfast kibble. They return from sniffing, peeing and peeing some more to line up at the door for feeding time. Then. It. Happens.

what the back door seemed like image from frank rani via flickr reactive commons

what the back door seemed like
image from frank rani via flickr reactive commons

I’ve locked myself outside. How in the ever-loving Hell did I manage that piece of witchcraft? I’m locked out, in the cold, without coffee, with two hungry Corgis. The dogs look up at me and they give me that “Stupid Human” look they have practiced more times that I can count. But, now I’m standing between them and food and the sweet little puppies are transforming into Were-Corgis.

In a state of coffee-less panic, all the options run through my brain. Break a window? Front door left unlocked? Deflate myself like a New England Patriot football and squeeze in through a crack under a door?  No, no, and no. Now, I have to pee and living in a suburban puritanical environment, the neighbors frown on public urination.

I can’t go to one of the neighbors and pick up a key (or use their bathroom) because I have two dogs with me. (And I’m that grumpy guy in the neighborhood – the “Get off my lawn” guy.)

I’m at my last resort, hungry dogs circling me, a full bladder and coffee withdrawal. I have to wake “She Who Must Not Be Awoken.” If I were to attempt to toss a pebble against the windowpane, I would likely break the window and shower Wifey with glass shards. She would not look kindly on my request for assistance.

Part of my blind morning ritual includes grabbing my cell phone and shoving it in my jeans pocket. I make the call feeling like a drunk from jail, soliciting a bail bondsman.

The phone rings…once…twice…three times. Christ, she’s screening her calls. Then she picks up. “Why are you calling me?”

“Um…I locked myself outside.”

I can’t begin to describe the laughter from her side of the phone. After she caught her breath, she said, “I’ll be right there.”

A few seconds later, the kitchen door unlocks and Wifey is standing there to rescue me. The Corgis burst in to await feeding, but not before they cast me a damning glance that said, “So much for all that opposable thumbs superiority crap.”

Stupid Human

Stupid Human

I survived, this time. Like Bear Grylls, I could have eaten fish from the pond, trapped birds and built a shelter out of tree branches. I could have. The rest of the day I sat in the corner, with coffee, and stayed out of trouble. Bubblewrap is staring to look like a viable option.

writer in the corner

writer in the corner



  1. stephanie710 · · Reply

    LOL…Oh dear. I felt your pain through the entire post (we’re totally separated at birth) but I’m still on the fence as to what was worse: no coffee or full bladder. Whew. That is a bad, evil combo. I would have gone pee in the bushes—screw my neighbors—they hate me anyway. Then, I would have busted the window to get to my French press. I do suspect I would have broken window remorse but not until after I had the required amount of caffeine in my blood to clear the fog from my brain. Glad you had your phone *passes a roll of bubble wrap* Paws up for Team Corgi!! 🙂

    1. Morning autopilot is not always a good thing. I’m happy that wifey was willing to accept the call. A few cups of coffee and my exile was a distant nightmare.

  2. I’m guessing Alarm Corgi has no snooze button

    1. If there is a snooze button, I have yet to find one.

  3. My morning routine as well, less the dog alarm. They wait until I place one foot on the floor and then bark. I have learned however that an extra key outside is handy.

    1. The outside key – what a concept! I am looking for a proper hidey-hole (one I can remember) for the next exile.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: