Death may take any form. She may be obvious, like a weapon, or obscure, like a chicken bone. And sometimes, she may be a puppy.

The retractable leash is great for walks and bathroom trips, but not all that helpful when playing outside. I bought 100 feet of rope and attached it to a metal hook via a figure eight knot (I'm no boyscout; I followed the instructions that came with the rope).

The rope works great. It gives Dagon room to run while giving me a 100 foot chance to grab him if he decides to run.

A couple days ago we were outside. I had a beer and a camera and a cigarette, and Dagon had a ball. I became momentarily distracted by something, and at that moment Dagon took off toward someone leaving their apartment. I dove for the rope, catching it just in time. In the process, the beer, camera, and/or cigarette smashed into my chest, knocking the wind out of my right lung.

It wasn't too bad; after about half an hour I recovered, more or less. Unfortunately the or less has conspired against me in the days following, during which Dagon has managed to exacerbate the injury over and over again.

At this point, I've had to rig a sling out of a t-shirt and drink shots of whiskey on the hour to keep from stressing it further.

Such is life…