So I was walking across the Cambie bridge after the Whitecaps lacklustre defeat to the Portland Timbers on Sunday evening when one of those adorable Pacific Assistance Dogs Society Golden Labradors appeared in front of me.
What a treat after such a terrible game!
But as I continued to watch her/him (Let’s just call the dog “Padsy” to save me any more gender confusion and also to protect his/her identity) anyway, as I continued to watch Padsy I became increasingly disillusioned with the behaviour displayed.
At first Padsy was distracted by simply seeing the water in False Creek, then some popcorn appeared by the railing and Padsy responded with almost uncontrollable excitement, then another dog sent Padsy into a fit of delight so unseemly that even Caleb Porter would feel embarrassed at the excess.
“Tut, tut Padsy” I thought to myself as I observed these demonstrations of both ill discipline and pointless expectation.
Padsy didn’t seem to realize that trying the same thing over and over again without success was the errand of a fool and I genuinely began to wonder if Padsy had ever even heard of Einstein’s famous maxim.
But then my thoughts turned to the person walking Padsy (Let’s call them “Walky” to save me any gender confusion and also to protect his/her identity) because Walky just didn’t seem interested in improving Padsy’s behaviour at all.
At the very moment when Padsy needed somebody to calmly explain that what they were doing wasn’t really working out Walky seemed oblivious to the issue.
When Walky was presented with a terrific opportunity to make Padsy a better dog simply by employing the right mix of punishment and praise Walky opted out and let things carry on as they were even though they clearly weren’t working.
How could I blame Padsy for being oblivious to the aphorisms of Einstein if Walky was equally bereft of such knowledge?
In the end we went our separate ways with Padsy and Walky as happy as two clams at a wedding reception with an open bar and me desperately trying to think of a good metaphor for all that is wrong with the Whitecaps.