Kickass

Kickass and downhill sleep

Kickass, the doorstop dog, allows the keeper a memory exercise that takes him back to his arrival on the UW campus fresh out of a three-year Army stint that included a year of Korean combat duty where sleeping in trenches and bunkers was the order of the day.

Joining a former high school pal—Arden Thorsebacken, the keeper’s UW sleeping location was a back porch, hanging—barely, off the rear of a very old Langdon Street house next to a woman’s dorm—the house is still there, painted up and defiant before fraternity row.

The keeper’s sleeping cot was on casters and due to the very slanting porch floor, had to be blocked up to provide level sleeping. Often, if the keeper rolled over in the night, the cot would fall off the blocks and roll across the floor to crash into the outside wall.

It was the kind of nighttime adventure that contributed to the keeper’s UW education and made him wonder if the UW had a policy for “combat pay.”

The one-semester residence was shared with a population of entrenched roaches that the landlord denied but that had obviously been around long enough to be in grad school.

The keeper wonders if the bugs and the slanting porch are still in place.

Maybe some day he will stop and ask, just to prove to Phyllis that his stories about going downhill in the middle of the night are true.

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