Writing 101: Death to Adverbs – Dog Park

Rachel, the Akbash/St. Bernard mix, charged the fence like a steam engine. Watching a dog of such mass run that fast could stop a heart. Her owner sprinted after her and commanded her to sit and look into his eyes for a stare down. After a few minutes, her deep amber eyes rolled to the side in submission. Even a 200 pound dog hunts squirrels.

The clouds crept across the once-blue sky, changing the optimism of the folks at the dog park. The dogs failed to care.

Bean the Rottweiler plopped to the ground and proceeded to paw at the grass and nudge it with her nose. She managed her own personal mud treat and lapped up what she could before her sister dog pounced in front of her in a heavy play bow. The two tumbled all over the well-worn grass and gnawed on each other’s ears like siblings do.

My skinny Iggy Pup bounced around them, egging on the rough-housing. His nose wrinkled and his floppy ears flagged excitement. A mottled pit mix zoomed under Iggy. Her flirtation worked. Iggy bounded to the great wide field and the two chased and danced until they fell to my feet, panting. When tongues hang low from your pup’s mouth, you breathe a sigh of relief. The pit owner obsessed over her iPhone and paid no attention.

Rachel’s dad shook his head and muttered something about what he wished he could do to irresponsible dog owners.

Beans’ mom handed him a bottle of Rolling Rock. They tapped the bottles in a toast.

Iggy lapped up the rest of the slimy drool water from the big blue utility bucket we humans call the water bowl. Before walking away, he lifted his leg and marked the bucket. His fellow dogs sniffed the message he left behind, but to my surprise, refrained from replying in kind.

Despite the new goofy Great Dane puppy prancing into the park and asking for play, Iggy sat in front of me and begged me to go home with his soft brown eyes. He nudged the leash with his long white nose and pawed my shin. The other dog owners pet him goodbye and bid us until tomorrow.

A raindrop fell on my nose. I agreed with Iggy. Dave cooked up pot roast back at the house. It was time to stroll home.

Assignment: Go to a public location and make a detailed report of what you see. The twist of the day? Write the post without adverbs.

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4 thoughts on “Writing 101: Death to Adverbs – Dog Park

  1. I got the scene but had a few moments when I couldn’t decipher between the dogs and the people. I know sometimes in my attempts to escape adverbs I avoid attribution, but that comes with a risk of creating confusion. One recommendation that might help is to decide whether you are going to call the dog owners owners or moms and dads. You flip within the post.

  2. I have to disagree with the first comment. You name the dogs quite clearly and interestingly the dog owners are nameless. Ain’t that always the way? We remember the critter’s name but not the keeper. Cute post. I love the dog park!

    1. Thank you! I agree- it IS the way. I remember “Cheddar”, “Moose”, “Gnash”, and “Dani” but I have no clue what their owners names are. Ha!
      I DO apologize for the “clunkers” I found just now. Fixed! Now off to the dog park!

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