In a previous house in a much different neighborhood an elderly man named George took early morning and early evening walks most days of the week. Without fail George on each walk stopped in front of our home to smile and wave at Barney, the family dog who was without fail either inside the house or inside the fenced back yard losing all semblance of his expensive dog training.
Barney constrained by man made barriers hated George.
Once during a particularly prolonged George morning smile and wave thing Barney broke a window so intense was he on returning the greeting. At least we desperately hoped that was all he wanted to do. It's just that there was something about George standing in front of the house that drove the poor old family dog absolutely bonkers.
On a number of occasions while on leash and out for his own neighborhood walk, Barney actually met George face to face and acted like they were best friends sniffing and licking and, you know, all the stuff best friends do to show affection.
Once back inside the house or the yard, though, Barney's reptilian brain -- assuming he has a brain at all which on occasion does not appear to be the case -- takes command of the ship and he becomes the snarling, leaping, let me at you maniac capable of at least breaking windows and making a whole lot of noise each time George stopped for his greeting.
"Gosh," George smiled and replied, "I always just assume he's doing his best to cheer me on."
Clearly and especially in the mind of George, events have no meaning beyond those we give to them.
But not learned enough to send me smiling and waving at a hackles raised, teeth bared, window breaking dog even if he is nothing more than -- underneath it all -- the goofy Family Dog.
Bottom line is, though, we really do make our own reality. George chose to be supported and cheered.
Keep trunkin' on, George.