Monday, October 14, 2013


There was a day in the not-too-distant past when a watching a scary movie before bedtime would mean a long, sleepless night with me jumping at every creak (farm houses are notoriously creaky at night, especially after a spooky movie!). I'd be too terrified to look out the window or to run to the bathroom.

Last night was different. Yes, after a scary movie - not a good way to calm the mind before bedtime! - I had a long, sleepless night. But I was not afraid. Not spooked. I was just awake...thinking.

I find it fascinating that we humans ask questions like "What happens to us after we die?" I don't think any dog or cat ever lay awake at night, looking up at the stars and wondering, "I wonder what comes next? What life is like 'on the other side'?" They certainly never made a movie about their musings.

We humans, we recognize that there is evil in the world, and we seem to intuitively understand that evil is wrong and that things need to be made right. That wickedness needs to be atoned for. That death should not be, as some have said, a fact of life. We have a very real sense that "All is not right in the world!" I just don't believe that the cow in the back pasture, whose calf was torn apart by coyotes a month ago, ever imagines the ghost of her dead offspring popping up out of grass to bleat, "Avenge my death!"

And, while it is true that our dog Jessie once went ballistic at a canine barking from the TV screen, I haven't ever seen a dog or cat or pet chinchilla pee the floor because Bruce Willis's young psychiatric patient saw a dead person under the bed.

I saw a bumper sticker once that said, "Dogs are people, too." Not only is that unbiblical, it's just plain stupid. Putting a pink tutu on Tiny does not make her a human. I understand the emotional attachment we develop for our animals, but, no, they are most definitely not people.

Just ask my cat. Even after watching a scary movie with the family last night, Kitty slept like a rock on the end of my bed and was bright-eyed and ready to terrorize chipmunks at first light this morning.

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