On a bench at Alki Beach in West Seattle, there daily sits a blind man with his blind dog. The blind man let Life in the Boomer Lane into his life, and told her that his dog loved people and loved to be petted. LBL obliged, and the dog responded, much the same as people do who have compensated for the loss of sight with a heightened awareness of their other senses.
LBL didn’t ask the blind man how he was able to care for a blind dog (or vice versa), since they both seemed perfectly fine. In fact, they were more than fine. LBL left their space feeling buoyant, grateful for them having shared their joy with her.
LBL could write a post, based on the blind man and his blind dog being a metaphor for the blind electorate who are now blindly following a certain unnamed politician. But she believes that the blind man and his blind dog probably know very well why they are following each other. Their relationship, unlike the politician and his followers, is based on substance, rather than style. There’s a track record there, and each knows that he has the loyalty of the other based on that record.
LBL could also write a post, based on the blind man and his blind dog being a metaphor for her spending two weeks in Seattle, essentially blind to the record-breaking fire raging throughout much of the state, a fire that blinded out the sky for several days and caused people in Seattle, although hundreds of miles from the inferno, to experience headaches, dizzy spells, and allergies. But the blind man and his blind dog, although not sighted, have an awareness that LBL didn’t have. Spending one’s days with a two-year-old can do that to you, and LBL hopes that the universe forgives her for being blind to the suffering of others, while she was changing diapers, making and feeding oatmeal, blowing bubbles, reading stories, and singing songs so many times that they play in her head at all hours of the day and night.
LBL could write a post, based on the blind man and his blind dog being a metaphor for the recent scandal involving Jared Fogle, who assumed that the world would turn a blind eye toward his odious behaviors. Plucked from obscurity by his major weight loss, thanks to consuming a daily Subway sandwich, he scored a lucrative position as spokesperson for the Subway sub chain. It turned out that sandwiches weren’t actually his consumption of choice. After starting a bogus foundation to deal with childhood obesity, he fed his own habit of having sex with under-age girls. The blind man and his blind dog will never be famous, and it’s unlikely that either will ever have a weight problem. And, unlike Jared, they are who they seem to be, utterly real, with no hidden agenda.
LBL is saving Josh Duggar for last, who, wrapped since birth in the holy cloth of evangelical Christianity, had the temerity to blame his two monumental falls from grace (molesting his sisters, followed by cheating on his wife) on the presence of the Devil in his life. LBL could write a post, based on the blind man and his blind dog being a metaphor for Josh’s life, since, in the absence of objective sight, both man and dog have created their own reality, based on what can’t be seen or verified.
But the blind man and his blind dog don’t blame their blindness on God, the devil, or on anything else other than a neutral universe that deals cards to everyone. They have chosen to play their cards in a way that stays true to a reality that enhances other’s lives, rather than takes advantage of them. Their blindness welcomes others, rather than focuses them on themselves.
And so, LBL thanks you, blind man and blind dog, for reminding her that amidst the endless barrage of shouting and visual bombardment that we have created for our world, it sometimes takes a quiet, unsighted moment to allow us to see.