Take it or Leaf It
By Bubba and Max
Bubba: Hey, squirrel brain, warm up your pipes, Dad got something new we’re not supposed to bark at.
Max: Cool! What? A cat? A possum? Another vacuum cleaner?
Bubba: No, but you’re getting warm. It’s a leaf blower.
Max: A whatcher-whooser?
Bubba: A leaf blower. It’s a machine that blows leaves.
Max: He doesn’t need a machine, the wind does that.
Bubba: Yeah, but—
Max: And they go all into the street and over to the neighbor’s yard and then Mom doesn’t have to rake them.
Bubba: Yeah, but—
Max: And when they’re dry they kind of tumble across the lawn and Titan, that new dinky dog across the street barks at them ’cause he’s kind of dumb and he thinks they’re attacking him.
Bubba: Like you’ve never thought you were being attacked by leaves.
Max: Not this week, I haven’t.
Bubba: (consulting the calendar and placing her paw on a date) So 24 hours ago was last week?
Max: Okay, so maybe I barked at one yesterday. But it was scary. It was big and red.
Max: Well, maybe. It’s fall and it was off the tree, so it musta been red.
Bubba: Or yellow. Or orange. Or brown. But you don’t see colors. You’re a dog.
Max: You sure I’m a dog? Mom says I think I’m the king of the world.
Bubba: (muttering) And one of these days I’m gonna crown you.
Max: Clown? Did you say clown? Want to see me dance in circles? And drool on myself. I’m really good at it.
Bubba: I wish you’d get good at leaving me alone.
Max: Know what else I’m good at?
Bubba: I know it’s not listening or keeping your brain train on the conversational track.
Max: (puts paws over ears while he thinks). Brain. Train. Track. Leaf blower. Yeah! (runs in circles barking) Where is it? Lemmee at it. I’ll bark it right back to the store where they bought it.
Bubba: (waggles paw at him) No, no, no. We’re not supposed to bark at it.
Max: Why not?
Bubba: Dad said so.
Max: Dad? Dad? Dad said so? (falling to the floor in a fit of laughter) He says not to sleep on his feet or on his pillow and I do it all the time. He says to come and I give him that blank stare thing.
Bubba: Something else you're good at.
Max: I practice in the mirror.
Bubba: Why doesn't that surprise me? So you’re gonna bark at the leaf blower?
Max: You bet. Every time Dad turns it on. (he runs in a tight circle and yips) Just leaf the barking to me. Get it? Leaf? Leave?