After I received a new Kong Roller and a Big Mean Kitty as gifts for my birthday, something had to give. My attention to specific old toys normally wanes when new ones arrive, but with the recent gifts joining two Wiffies (the traditional white Wiffie and the newer, multi-holed yellow Wiffie, which is actually a pickleball that I found one day in the park) plus the two small orange rubber balls, I suddenly had too many choices. Sometimes I played with two or more simultaneously, inevitably leaving them strewn all over the first floor in places where foot-dropped, careless Mike could easily trip over them. When he inadvertently stepped on one of the small orange balls, lurched forward and strained his already injured shoulder, Heather had seen enough.
While all the tug toys and squeaky toys and fetch toys come and go, chasing balls, inside as well as outside, has never wavered as my favorite sport. Therefore Heather couldn’t jut take away my balls, never to be seen again. The spirited game of throw nd fetch that she and I play every morning bas become one of the highlights of our day. I especially like the part when I push the ball under a chair or cabinet and bark at it.
Instead of hiding them, Heather rounded up all the balls and herded them into a small area at the foot of the fireplace (which never gets used) and behind the couch (which rarely gets sat on). This was a stroke of absolute genius! The balls were at once accessible and yet relatively hidden away. Once the Wiffie Corral was officially designated, any errant balls I might leave behind were re-routed back to their barn. Within a day or two, I understood where to find them, and soon enough Mike and Heather were adequately trained to look for balls anywhere on the floor and put them there. And this is how it should be! As ol’ Ben Franklin said, “A place for everything, everything in its place.”
With the Wiffie Corral firmly established, my morning romp with Heather continued unabated.
Unfortunately, Heather and Mike still get aggravated whenever I push a ball under a chair or other piece of furniture and bark at it until someone gets on hands and knees to reach underneath and retrieve it for me. It is what it is. As Einstein said, “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.”