A. Yes, I don’t think I did. The first time I was working as a dog walker, I was in a restaurant and an employee was giving me a hard time by saying something like “You’re a dog walker—you are not very good at it.” I said, “How could you say that? Dogs walk. Dogs do fine.” I worked at the McDonald-McMillan food company for 10 years. I got so good they put us at two dogs a week. I didn’t tell anyone that until they called to complain about a new guy walking all over their lawn.
Q. Now that you’ve worked more, what has changed?
A. I do have more social skills. I’ve met a lot of new people. My work has made me a better cook. In a way I am happier.
Q. You started eating your dinner in the car when you were a kid?
A. Yes. I’ve always lived on the move, but I have moved a lot in my life. I lived in South Carolina from 1965 to 1979. I have a house in Portland, Oregon, and I have been in England four years. One day the landlord found out I was moving to Japan, so he called me up at home and said “This is your house for the summer. What do you think?” I said, “No, I am not moving.”
I was going to move to Japan.
Q. So when you had your first daughter, you were thinking about going to Japan?
A. Yes. When I was in my 40s my wife was pregnant. She wanted to get out of the kitchen and put food away in a big plastic bag. My wife said to herself, “Wouldn’t it be great to have a baby in the basement?” At that point my mind went completely blank. In Japanese they use “nishi yaki” meaning an old lady and “shima” meaning a woman, but Japanese men just call me “doh.” I wasn’t interested. I’ve said this before, but I’m no longer able to say that I am no longer Japanese. But I feel that I can speak Japanese perfectly. I don’t see how I could pass for Japanese.
This is my life.
Q. Is that what people have told you so far?
A. Yes. There have been people who have made a lot of money running shoe companies, and I
pet business magazine, pet food in the news, animal business careers, how to start your own dog toy business, pet care business plan