Apartment Pool a Redneck Haven
The apartment complex we live at has turned out to be a fairly pleasant surprise. It’s cool, quiet, convenient, and reasonably priced. But when the sun comes out, the community shows its true colors at the pool.

I have often walked by our apartment pool while out with the dog, and there are some seedy characters who basically live there during the summer. There’s a petite neighbor woman named Kimmy who’s always very drunk, and she seems to have several non-resident guests with her who are also very drunk and recently released from jail. “Oh it’s Baaaaaaxter, hey come here Baaaaaxter! I’m going to be getting my own beagle soon!” she always says. There is this 13-year-old boy who thinks he’s the king of the pool, calling me “man” all the time. “Hey man, what’s up man? My dad’s friend used to live here, so it’s all good man.” Clearly he doesn’t live here and is receiving minimal parenting.

There is inevitably a group of glistening bros who go to great lengths to hook up their stereo by unplugging a nearby pop machine and running a 50-foot extension cord through the pool area, then play some summer techno mixes as they think about getting in the water but never really go through with it. They are always just sticking their toes in and kicking around to test the temp. They are always bronzed and slicked up with suntan lotion, and really like Bud Light and shaving their chests and arms.

There is also typically a big Spanish-speaking birthday party going on with lots of kids screaming. During the weekends there is a non-stop thumping of bass and an occasional accordion-sounding instrument coming from their parties. Someone else is usually grilling way more meat than their group can possibly consume, complete with an overpowering stench of charcoal saturated in lighter fluid. They have gone to great lengths to purchase four buns for every piece of meat, 90% of which never get opened, and every condiment known to man in bulk sizes.

Last week someone set up a couple of canopy tents, threw down some patches of astroturf, and brought an additional grill for the party of the century. The mega-party consisted of five people, one being a baby. And they left everything behind… it’s still sitting there four days later!

During the off-hours, or between 6 and 8am, there is usually an older resident trying to get in a morning swim and complains to me about the lack of attention to the pool. “This water shouldn’t be so green, should it? Those damn maintenance workers, I’ve never seen them over here once!”

It’s pretty nice that there’s no supervision. The couple times we’ve gone down there everyone has been very cool with us bringing banned items like dogs, glass, and alcohol. In fact it seems to be encouraged.

Yes, the High Oaks community pool is the place to be this summer, for residents, non-residents, unsupervised children, underage drinkers, and beagles alike.

Josie the Neighbor Dog and Her Kid Owner
Every time I have ever seen this one particular girl, probably 8 to 10 years old, at our apartment complex, it is under the exact same circumstances, and I find it terribly annoying. This chubby little girl is always seen opening the door to her apartment, and out full-speed runs this small wiener-type dog, yipping as it bolts across the parking lot. The girl then waddles after it with her arms reached straight out, screaming “Josie, nooooooooooooooooo!!!!!!!!” to little avail. I’m usually walking Baxter when this happens and Baxter and this dog start playing. Who knows how far Josie would run otherwise. I have never figured out if this dog is just escaping every time the door opens, or if she’s letting it off without a leash in hopes she’ll stay nearby, but either way it isn’t working out for her.

“Hmm… I’m fricking dying out here in the heat, but if I go in I may not be let back out for a while… better give it a couple more minutes.”

Baxter’s Wart Lands Him at Work
Baxter has had himself quite the week. First, he was diagnosed with some sort of canine papilloma wart on his lip by the daycare staff and was isolated from the other pups on Tuesday. I was told not to allow him to return until the wart had been cleared up. So, Lauren decided to take him to work the rest of the week to keep him from further destroying our apartment.

He is also really struggling with coming when called. Every morning when I wake up and try to take him out, he wants to go, but cautiously resists. I’ll stand by the door calling his name, and he’ll peek out the bedroom door at me, tail wagging, but refuses to come any closer! I’ll pick up his leash and wave it at him, continuing to call, and he still just cocks his head back and forth. “Whatever are you trying to tell me, papa?” he asks. I wind up going over and attaching his leash and dragging his ass out the door every time. The same thing happens when he’s out on the balcony in the scorching sun. He’ll stand by the door panting, clearly overheated and wanting back inside, but when I open the door he’ll just stand and stare at me. I’ll close the door and let him bake for another minute and try again… still won’t come in. What is his deal?