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by Ken Keckler DVM

Many moons ago, before our boys were born, my wife Stephanie would occasionally go on calls with me. With my crazy schedule, she might show up during the races at Northfield Park, or hop in the truck to go on an emergency run. This gave us the chance to actually SEE each other, and possibly have a conversation. Yesterday, Independence Day, I needed an extra set of hands on a case and asked her to ride along to help me.

As we were getting ready to leave, I noted a small mat of hairs on our dog’s hip. Stephanie promptly grabbed Brisby (our miniature Australian Shepherd) and a comb, intending to get some grooming time in on our excursion.

It was a beautiful day, cool and sunshiny. We drove into downtown Chagrin Falls, windows open, wind through our hair, dog head hanging out the passenger window, and saw there was a car show happening. Sharp, chromed fins from sleek, shiny ‘50’s models. Bulbous polished fenders and smooth round edges from earlier years. All with hoods and trunks yawning toward the passersby, beckoning them to come, view their innermost secrets. Flashy automobiles and the call of the open road. On July 4th , what could represent America and freedom more?

Leaving the triangular center of Chagrin, we jostled up the cobbled roads, Stephanie pulling more and more hair from Brisby’s thick coat. She would peel it off the comb, and release it out the window, leaving the fiber outside in nature, where it was intended to be. I could see the tufts in my rearview mirror, tumbling along behind us in the turbulence. A wisp tickled past my nose, and I assumed that Steph was not getting all of the fur out of the truck. I made this observation as I gathered a small clump and let the wind rip it from my fingertips out my window. She looked at me funny. (I am used to that.) “The back windows!” Stephanie said. “They’re open. The hair is being sucked right back into the rear windows!”

It sure was. A portion of every thatch flipped around and landed in the back seat, where it was forming a hair eddy, swirling about and rising into the front seat. It was clinging to the upholstery, the ceiling, and me, when it had the chance.

I quickly closed the rear windows, stopping the influx of fuzz, and that’s when I noticed it in my rearview.

“I’ll bet the guy behind us in the convertible isn’t too happy either…”

I hope he wasn’t wearing a hairpiece…


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