Well it’s the big game day at the Marlins’ stadium. ‘Bark at the Park’ is an event that the Marlins co-sponsor with the humane societies of Miami Dade and Broward. You can bring your dog and sit in a special section of the stadium. This year, in the new stadium, it’s an afternoon game. They are ready for the crowds of people with their dogs that arrive with leashes, caps, tee shirts. You can take a picture with your best friend at the entrance, and head up the ramp to the Vista level. No complaints here, although it’s the highest level, it has a great view of the field. There are amenities for the dogs such as water bowls at each level of the ascending ramp, a walking area covered with faux grass, and giveaways such as bag clips and water bottles.
Of course there are the obvious comparisons of dogs with masters. The tiny little dog who fits in a purse with a very feminine young women, or the dyed in the wool baseball fan with a miniature bulldog. But there are also those anomalies, like small dogs with very manly looking men, and a waif-like female with an Irish setter. The dogs seemed happy to be included in the fun, there were a few near-conflicts, such as two beagles interacting with a dachshund, but all was settled quickly. Many of the owners took advantage of the day to outfit their pets in team clothing, logos and all. Most sported either a neckerchief or a cap-when they stayed on their heads. The atmosphere in the Vista section was fairly upbeat, and the game did not disappoint. Justin Ruggiano won the game with a single, bringing the score to 5-4 over the San Diego Padres. http://miami.marlins.mlb.com/mlb/gameday/index.jsp?gid=2012_07_29_sdnmlb_miamlb_1&mode=recap&c_id=mia
If you are a pet owner, there’s something special about bringing your pet to an event. Normally you’re leaving them home; here they are with you enjoying the moment. It’s a chance to define you, who you really are. We are probably ourselves most truly and authentically when we are with our pets. We are that part of us that no one sees. How we behave with our pets and even how we decide to dress them is a reflection of how we perceive the world around us. We are interacting with this dependent creature and celebrating them. When we do this, we are also saying who we are. This activity also engages others. The people around you acknowledge you, your pet, and your point of view. They are reflecting their own selves with their pets and communicating that to you. It’s an exchange that seems to define all of us, we are there to enjoy a game and the presence of this member of the family. It amazes me that on these occasions everyone seems to get along. The crowd seems mellow, subdued yet joyous. Could it be at that moment we’ve all become part of one big pack, dog and human? If we are expressing our inner nature then I think our nature is a peaceful one. It’s a being that just wants to get along and enjoy the triumphs as they come while sharing in the setbacks. I encourage you to allow your inner domestic animal define you; you might just discover your most genuine personal brand.