Last night, around 9:30, I took Jackson out for his late walk. He started in the bushes alongside our front steps, sniffing around for a few seconds. While he was sniffing, I heard a couple of guys and a dog coming down the sidewalk towards us. I couldn't see them, but the dog's tags were shaking very quickly, too quickly for the usual walking pace. I thought maybe the dog was off leash.
Sure enough, as soon as I could see them and yell, "Leash it!" the off-leash dog saw Jackson and came running. It was a young dog, and it wasn't attacking. But it ran right through my "No!" up onto our steps, and stopped right next to Jackson. By that time, the two guys had appeared. The owner said "Sorry" and got his dog down off the steps. He didn't leash it, though, and it went running off.
"Leash laws, please," I said. "Sure, man," the owner said as he walked away. He said it in that hipster/punk dialect where "sure" is a synonym for "fuck you," and he did nothing to leash his dog.
I snapped. I started walking towards him. In my finest Brooklyn gutturals, I said, "Hey, asshole, I'm talking to you." He immediately called his dog to him, leashed it, and crossed the street. (In my defense, I had been watching Sons of Anarchy before the walk. It gets me all revved up.)
Back home, around midnight, upstairs in my office, I heard a sound - something coming through our front-door mail slot. I went downstairs. There on the floor were four Pringles-style potato chips. It could be a coincidence, but Occam's Razor says reprisal. Or a peace offering for Jackson? Dogshit would have been a clear message, as would a dog biscuit. But four potato chips? The semiotics elude me.