Have you ever had something you enjoy totally ruined by one bad experience? Say, for example, you can't eat a meal you enjoy because once you threw up afterward, or you can't watch a movie because someone pointed out that the actor you found so attractive looks a lot like your dad. Well, I think I did something like that to someone tonight.

There's a park near me where I have been running lately. It's the nearest place to our house where I can run on dirt, which I feel might help the shin splints I have been getting, so I'm reluctant to give it up. But people are always there with dogs. Lots of dogs. I wouldn't care, but they are never on leashes, despite the posted sign mandating otherwise. Still, most of them are well-behaved, so I generally ignore them.

But tonight someone's over-excited dog jumped up on me and nearly tripped me, so I told the owners (not terribly kindly, but not yelling either) that the dog is supposed to be on a leash. Then I felt guilty, and when I passed them a few minutes I told them I was sorry if I sounded rude. But they just gave me the dirtiest looks I could imagine. Maybe they won't stop going there, but I imagine I still ruined the place for them.


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