WASHINGTON — The Metro is not always a commute that sparks joy, especially on the Red Line. Between the two stations with no air conditioning and the (cough fairly regular) single-tracking, it is understandable if riders are tired, worn down, and wary of the world.
This is a vibe that James Guess – a recent transplant from Chicago – can understand. So when he got a new dog and a new iPhone, he realized there was something he could do to cheer up even the most churlish of commuters.
He started air-dropping complete strangers photos of his dog.
“What better than a captive audience on the train?” he laughed Thursday night. “I haven’t gotten caught yet.”
His dog, Henry, is a gorgeous mutt from the Humane Rescue Alliance. Guess and his girlfriend, Kelsey Weigel, adopted him in February. He sends various photos to unsuspecting commuters about six or seven times each way to and from work.
“What’s fun about it, I feel like I’m being sneaky but not in a malicious, dangerous or inappropriate way,” he explained.
He said people normally don’t accept the picture – on air-drop, you can click “reject” before the photo saves to your camera roll – but at least one or two a day normally are blessed with the picture.
“I won’t like, spam people about it…like if I see you decline it, I won’t send it again,” he said. “I just send one to get them in a good mood.”
Ideally, Guess said, Henry would suddenly become an internet celeb and help pay the bills.
“I think Henry needs to start earning some money and paying the rent!” he laughed. “Someone has got to pay off my student loans and it’s not going to be me.”
So if you want to help Guess accomplish his dreams of paying off his student debt with his dog's internet fame, you can follow Henry at @HenrytheVelcroDog on Instagram. (Though, he added, that's not really their goal.)
“He sort of doesn’t leave us alone, he’s stuck to our side like Velcro,” he explained of the username. “We say he’s the best dog. And he is, except when he’s not.”
Like the time Henry ate a pound of raw ground beef off the counter during an ill-fated summer cookout.
“He did betray us a little bit then,” Guess laughed.