Cucumber Proportion & Walking For Jesus Man

no not the wine No, I’m not drinking before blogging–though that holds a certain charm, really–the bottle is for proportion and perspective. I feel inordinately proud that I’ve grown a cubit-long cucumber. (And now all I can think of is Bill Cosby going “Riiiiiiight.”) Technically I didn’t do anything but plant, water, and weed, but I still feel ridiculously proud.

Saturday I finished the revisions for the first Gallow book. It’s clocking in at around 74-75k now, and several new scenes have been added. Now I sit and bite my nails and hope it doesn’t suck.

I took yesterday off to recover a bit, and managed to bomb over the river to Powell’s and Everyday Music with my writing partner. Then someone else made me dinner (let’s call him Tarzan, shall we?) and I was able to stumble off to bed and collapse.

The most exotic part of yesterday was my morning run, and not for the usual reasons. I’ve rehabilitated my ankle, so now I’m working back up to regular mileage. Yesterday was a “long” run, and of course Miss B thought she was in charge of two-thirds of it. What I’m going to do when that dog is too old to run is beyond me, I’ll probably look like a drunken sailor because I keep expecting an invisible dog to try and HEEEEERD me. But that’s not what made it…interesting.

I was on a long straight shot down a local road, running under trees and savouring the shade, when I saw a man waving frantically about two blocks ahead of me. Of course I slowed, and began scanning for the problem–car accident? Altercation? Did he have cohorts? I grabbed for the hand-loop on Miss B’s leash so she didn’t lunge until I was ready for her to, slowed further, and popped my earbud out. “Are you okay?” He really did look distressed.

He was a bit unshaven, gold-rimmed spectacles, wrinkled chinos, a polo shirt that was just a little past “not so fresh.” But this is Vancouver, we’re spitting distance from the rumpled-hipster parade of Portland, so he wasn’t really outre, just a little…crumpled. No blood or damage I could see, but he was sweating an awful lot–it was a warm morning, though. I couldn’t see a car accident, I couldn’t see if he had any confederates, and there was a fence instead of houses to my left, so he hadn’t run out of a house to seek some sort of aid.


I actually stopped, staring at him. Miss B made a low noise in her chest, the sort of do not come near my human, I mean business I rarely hear from her. I replayed what he said inside my head, and decided he had indeed told me he was walking for Jesus and asked for spare change.

My mouth opened, and what fell out was, “I am running, and I do not have time for bullshit.” I hopped off the sidewalk and gained speed, Miss B still making her grinding noise. When she does that, it’s best to listen.

I suppose he wasn’t ready for such a prompt response. I had almost gotten my earbud back in when I heard his final shot.


I wanted to round on him and tell him that I’d already survived childhood, hell holds no goddamn fear for me, and anyway, I don’t run with my pockets full of quarters to give out to shady fucks my dog doesn’t like. But why bother? Also, just getting away from the crazy and keeping my heartrate up and my stride long was probably the best response, since getting in an altercation would mean that I’d have to call the cops after I put him down and really, I did not have time for that bullshit.

It was only later I started trying to figure out what the hell had actually happened. Was he homeless, high, just desperate, figuring that saying “Jesus” would make a scam go easier, or what? Of all the times I’ve been accosted while running, this is one of the more puzzling.

Anyway, I turned in six and a half kilometers at a good steady 7:21 per, so I’m well on my way to getting back to regular running. What Walking For Jesus Man wanted or actually meant is beyond me, and is probably going to stay that way.

I can’t say I mind.

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Vickie Remo
Vickie Remo

Sorry he interrupted your run- I always hate when the panhandlers walk up behind me in a parking lot as I am getting into my car. Talk about pushing buttons! Someone I would have helped out normally just gets yelled at because they just scared the crap out of me. The Jesus thing is just weird.

Vincent Morrison
Vincent Morrison

I imagine Walking For Jesus was just his shtick. Some people respond positively when you mention Christianity. Or else is guilt-trips them into giving. I love how you handled it, though. I think I would’ve had to flip the guy a backwards word after the Satan comment, though.

Vincent Morrison
Vincent Morrison

I can always tell when I’m tired. I switch words or just leave words out entirely. Oy.

Christine Hansen
Christine Hansen

Oh, how I do love it when my dog earns his kibble by scaring the bejesus out of the religious folk who come to my door to save my soul. (Honestly people, if I want to attend your church, I will come and find you.) Very glad to know you’ve got such an awesome sauce running partner.

p.s. congrats on the epic cuke *and* on finishing the revisions for the Gallow book. You’ve been a busy camper lately, haven’t you?!???

Always listen to your pets. they love you and know you better than anyone else, and they can smell predators. Good dog!


I always trust my dogs’ opinions regarding strangers.
Even my goofball eternal puppy Meshika knew weird when she saw it.


Good dog, Miss B!
I think violetmythos summed up the probable cause of the incident nicely, I will only add that people like that often also dislike uppity women who refuse to be manipulated or intimidated.
That cucumber is pretty awesome.
For the second summer in a row i’ve manage to discourage tomato plants, so you can claim a little more credit. Ive resolved to start a compost heap and build a raised bed for next summer.

Prisoner of Loo Seat Zenda Trundles

[…] lot of you commented on Miss B’s “I Mean Business” noise during the whole WalkingForJesus Man thing. She doesn’t often make that sound. Of course, most people she’s pretty neutral on; she […]

Elizabeth L
Elizabeth L

Sometimes I wish my pit bull was a little more suspicious. Even after her previous owner used her as a bait dog in fights, she has nothing but adoration for every human being she meets, and all of us simply must be here for loving and snuggling and kissing and providing treats and snuggling and then more snuggling.