Jimmy Bacon Stays Up Past The Tonight Show
Jimmy Bacon ate my toes off last year. First his name was Jimmy, the dog. Then, Jimmy, you want your bacon? Then, as that is what he loved most (or what I thought he loved most), gradually just plain Jimmy Bacon. I found out last year he loved me most.
He didn't intend to eat my toes. Or, he did, but it was not how it sounds. Well, it was how it sounds, but not violent. I was asleep. I can't feel my toes. He was trying to help me.
I had a sore on the big one. Maybe a sore on the one next to it, too. The second one if you're playing little piggy. It's hard to know now as that is well, no more. I had been dressing the wound regularly on the big toe, but Jimmy Bacon apparently thought I had not been up to snuff in my medical tending duties.
I knew he'd sniff and give it the odd lick while I was awake watching tv. Haven't you had a dog do that? They're trying to be nice, like a monkey picking nits (or what they think is nits) out of your hair. They're grooming you. Showing loyalty. They're bonding with you. So that you can all get together and save each other from the lion or whatever goes bump in the night.
Well. Since I live in a home with no lions present, Jimmy Bacon perhaps over groomed me that night as he had no lions to fight off.
You can't see me, or the insulin needles on my kitchen table, so I'll just say it. I have the sugar. It makes my toes and fingers funny and I don't feel in them so good as I used to. That's good, but bad. Well. Maybe good. I don't know.
When I called dispatch for our county, they thought I was drunk. It's true, I've been known to fall down a time or two. But I was wide awake this time. I will say this for the old boy, Jimmy Bacon's medical tending was second to none. You never saw a cleaner wound site. He had stayed up past the Tonight Show and then into the late night hours nibbling and tending and worrying that wound until it was no more.
So, though he was as proud as punch when I woke up, licking my face to come examine his handiwork, the amazing vanishing wound that was no more, well, I vomited right over him. He seemed to take that in the spirit intended and began cleaning that up, too. You've got to admit dogs are loyal.
The sheriff showed up along with the county and led Jimmy Bacon off by the collar. He went tail wagging. Then as they were outside getting in the car I panicked. The older attendant ignored me but the younger one must have had a dog, too, so he went and brought the sheriff back. Jimmy Bacon was secured in the car, I was told and would harm me no more.
But he just had a sweet tooth I told the sheriff, who looked angry. He must have been a cat person. Once i had vomited and had some toast while I was waiting for them to get there, I live kinda far out, I actually felt a bit better. Jimmy Bacon sat right by the foot protecting it from any further germs or bumps or bruises. I felt like the King of Persia. Minus a couple toes.
Once the commotion got here, though, I sort of lost my hope. The sirens were what made it hurt. All the noise and flashing lights. Until then, it was out of this world, like Mary's face in a tortilla only my dog eating my toes off. I wasn't sure it had really happened. By the time I woke up there was no blood. Jimmy Bacon could have gotten a degree from medical school. Well, probably junior college, but you know what I mean. He had done a good job. Unasked, though, that was the problem.
Also unasked, the county was protecting me from him. The sheriff waved something in my face, saying sign it so they could keep him voluntarily to test for rabies or he would just take him period and have him destroyed. Now, Jimmy Bacon didn't have no rabies. We both knew that. He would have eaten me all smack up if he'd had that, right? Maybe a few throw pillows and cushions, too.
But I signed it as thinking of him in the gas chamber was worse. After the quarantine, I was allowed to bring him back. He looked sheepish as if he knew he'd done something wrong to be sent away to the place that smelled like bleach and other dogs and had bars and no sofas to fall sleep on and no Tonight Show theme blaring us awake or or singing us to sleep, depending.
I kept him. I shouldn't of. I know. I do know. But I did. He never ate my toes again. Nor I, his, in the spirit of vengeance. But each morning, I take the first bite of his bacon now to remind him I got teeth, too.
Author: Meriwether O'Connor