I've just had one of the weirdest encounters with a neighbor about Bryson, I feel obliged to share.
This neighbor in question lives down the hall (a renter who moved in recently), who told us once to our face "your dog terrifies me".
We totally thought she was joking. I mean, FEROCIOUS Bryson? The Bryson's who's spooked by a falling piece of lettuce, and stays 1000 yards away from the barking chihuahua? Sure, he has his "ferocious" moments with food (just look at that scary, scary picture of him). We really thought she was joking.
Today, being unusually hot, we left our door ajar, and Bryson slipped outside to sit in the hallway where it's cooler. We've always thought that's cool coz all our neighbors adore him and constantly want to pet and hug him...
Well, apparently, all except for one. And today, with the aid of the soaring temperatures, things got to a boiling point...
8 p.m. ("knock knock" on our front door)
Me: Coming! (thinking it was our other neighbor wanting to ask us for opinion on his remodeling job, a common and most welcomed occurence these days)
Terrified neighbor (clutching a shopping bag with white knuckles, shows up outside our door and appearing about to either cry or throw up or both): Excuse me, but I think it's WRONG that your dog is out here by itself when you're not here.
Me: Huh?! Come again? (OK, I didn't say come again even though I wanted to). But he wasn't doing anything! (pointing at Bryson, who's half asleep with one eye open, checking out to see what the commotion was about)
Terrified neighbor: I'm afraid your dog might jump me. You shouldn't leave your dog unsupervised, ever! (inching closer to her unit, still clutching bag with white knuckles)
Me: Er, but I just went in to get a glass of water (untrue, I was kicking my legs up watching "Who's Wedding is it Anyway?" on Tivo).
Terrified neighbor (desperately trying to get to her door while staying at least 15 feet from Bryson, who's lazily scratching his ear, which sends her flinching): No you're not, I've been standing out here for the last 5 minutes.
Me (trying very hard to stifle a giggle): What?.... why have you been standing...? Anyway, I'm sorry you're afraid..... Errr... (the nice part of me wanted to suggest she sees a shrink, while the evil part of me thought perhaps I should toss a treat her way, just to see what happens...)
Terrified neighbor (made a mad dash to her door, threw us one last furtive look and slammed the door shut)
OK, I guess she's not kidding when she said she was terrified of Bryson. And I get it, phobias are hard to overcome, and they're sometimes irrational and out of the person's control (I'm really trying to be kind here).
But all that aggressive energy thrown at us (on a particularly hot day, mind you) for nothing in particular that we have done is just a bit much.
So, when I see her next, should I (a) suggest group counseling with Bryson on her lap? (b) hide a treat in the hem of her pants?