How Come My Dog Don't Bark When You Come Around?
As a Captain in the Army, Brad had just returned from a 6-month tour in Germany 2 days prior to when he was expected by his wife. This was his second such tour with the first having been in several postings in France and Britain. His wife, Brandy, of 4 years held a junior management position in one of the Big 3 accounting firms in Chicago. They had met and fallen in love in their Junior years at Penn State University on the main campus in State College, PA. He was in Chi Phi and she in Kappa Alpha Theta, and it was at a social between the two Greeks that they met for the first time. Graduating from Penn State, the two spent 4 weeks in New Orleans and 1 week on the fine, white quartz beach in Destin, FL. It was during this wealth of experiences that the two became very close. They continued their exclusive relationship though B-school at the University of Pittsburgh, Katz School. With each of them receiving an MBA and with the same interests in outdoor activities and sports, they seemed destined to be together. Upon graduaton he proposed, she accepted, and they were married 1 month later.
Prior to starting his second tour, the 2 had adopted a dog as a pet as well as a means of security for Brandy in the townhouse when she was alone. During the first tour with Brad's absense, there had been several incidents in the neighborhood that made Brandy uncomfortable in the townhouse. They specifically adopted a German Shepard for its awareness and natural temperment to protect the property and its masters. They named the dog "Jazz" as a reflection of their time in New Orleans, and he was 2 by the time Brad started his second tour.
This second tour was to be his last as his 6-year contract with the Army was nearly complete. His plan was that he would resign from the Army and seek a professional position in the Chicago area. At that point the two would raise a family, specifically 2 children. He wanted to wait until he was home to inform her of his plans.
Upon returning to Chicago from his second tour, he was able to get back 2 days earlier then Brandy expected. He wanted to surprise her when she arrived home from work, Brad had gotten to the house at 1 PM having taking a taxi from Ohara. He threw his bags in the second bedroom and went to the closed-in backyard to let Jazz in. After several minutes with Jazz to settle him down, he stripped off his fatigues to take a long shower given the 10 hour flight from Frankfurt. He then dressed in his jeans and cotton pullover and headed to the corner liquor store for their favorite Champagne, and some Heineken. He didn't recognize the craft beer that was in the fridge. "When did Brandy start drinking beer." he muttered outloud to himself. it was now 4, and Brandy was not expected until 6:00.
Brad was relaxing in the front room on the leather sofa catching up on the local news with Jazz's chin on his lap. Suddenly, the dog jumped from the couch and headed for the front door. It opened, and a young man entered immediately petting Jazz, but not noticing Brad in the front room. Jazz did not bark, but instead was exicted to see this man. Brad got up and went to the front door directly confronting the guy. "WHO are you sir?" The young man was totally surprised to see Brad and stood silently. Brad repeated: "Who the hell are you and why are you in my house?" The young man stuttered somewhat with "Ahhhh. I wanted to drop off some wine for Brandy .... Is she here?" he asked unconvincingly. Brad moved directly in front of the man. "Hell NO! She is not here .... and you should not be either. You need to leave NOW!" The young man turned and left without even closing the door behind him. Brad slammed the door closed and returned to the couch with Jazz to place his thoughts in order. It was clear to him what the story was. As a Captain in the Army he had transformed to an individual that made decisions based on his intuition to deal with the orders he was presented by his superiors.
Kris Kristofferson's lyrics went through Brad's mind as he walked out of the townhouse an hour later with his bags not expecting to return anytime soon:"Freedom's just another word for having nothing to lose."