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Went and bought two zebra finches, white zebras, without the markings. She is a lady, pure white and soft, a class act, while he's a bit of a ruffian with some pale markings and an uneven bar across the front.
They've been acting rather frantic lately, what with all the mating and screechy crowing, and trying to stick odd pieces of feathers and paper to their roosts. A nest, a nest, we need a nest! So I relent and get them a nest.
I'm clumsy, they're fluttering around in the tiny cage, but it isn't two minutes after I finish that he hops into the nest, arranging the shredded pieces of cloth I gave them for bedding. He makes strange sounds from the bottom of the nest, she cranes to look in, he pops up with the bedding in his beak, scaring her back. Takes a half an hour for her to finally inspect the interior and begin to rearrange the furnishings.
Now they decide to move out, only to discover there is no other nest available, so the bedding has to go back in. She puts it in, he takes it out, and they fight over it. The couple's first fight. Then he starts crowing, she flutters her tail feathers, they make up. When I turn down the lights, they disappear into the nest.
... not much later:
I am teaching basic electronics to a class of 18/19-year old recruits not much younger than me: resistors, capacitors, transformers, diodes, cathodes and such, how to put them together for your basic AM radio. We're at the point where all the parts of a working radio come together on a board.
Ohoh, I'm missing a tube! I appoint one of the young ones to run to the office down the hall and get the missing fallopian tube. There are a couple of snickers from the class, I give them a disapproving look. The kid comes back flustered and red-faced, they said they were fresh out of fallopian tubes and everyone was laughing?
Well then. We'll have to do without. I put the finishing touches to the radio, close the switch. Much static. I tune it a bit and there is music from a local radio station. Applause all around!
The music stops:
We interrupt this broadcast for an important announcement ... President Kennedy has been shot in Dallas, he's being rushed to a local hospital ...
I've recently discovered my Tab A lets me doodle ...
Astor Place: Heavy pedestrian traffic funnels through snow remnants at the corner. People are forced to cross a piled-up industrial carpet covered with a rubber mat, strategically placed at the crossing. I sidle closer, address the mound: "So. You're back again!" The rather heavy-set woman struggling across tries not to let me know she knows I'm a weirdo, and misses the barely perceptible movement of the pile.
First time I saw him was some three, four years ago when I stepped across a similar mound near a construction site. It didn't feel right, visions of dead bodies came to mind. I wondered what to do. There was a pause in traffic, the carpets fell open, a very healthy-looking young man dashed to the corner news stand, bought a pack of gum, and dove back into the pile. Noticed him several times since, the last time this past summer when a panicked lady screamed for the cops after feeling a movement below her feet. I watched them talk to him, he straightened his jacked, adjusted his cap, and disappeared up the avenue.
Today I stay for a only a few minutes. There are a some funny looks from people as they make their way across; one knows. He steps over the carpets, notices me watching and shakes his head. "There's someone in there."
I do have other things to do and head south, down the avenue.
Memories. I recall this one of yours.
memories ... so many memories ...
I was looking for some oldie for tonight but got detoured watching the Yankees win, they're doing good so far this season. Got to thinking about the seventh inning stretch at home games and how I miss Kate Smith belting out God Bless America, axed due to her racist history. They have live performers giving it a try, none as inspiring as Kate Smith. They've tried replacing the anthem with Take Me Out to the Ball Game which just doesn't hack it either though I love that ditty as well. And there we get to today's memories ...
Take me out the ball game
Take me out with the crowd
Buy me some peanuts and Crackerjacks
I don't care if we never come back ..
I can't stand the smell and taste of Crackerjacks due to a traumatic childhood experience. It was my first ever airplane ride, flying from Frankfurt to New York which in those days took many hours with refueling stops in England and Newfoundland. We finish refueling somewhere in England, fifteen minutes over the ocean the Captain comes on the intercom: we have to fly back due to engine problems. I'm looking out the window. Dad, look, the propeller isn't moving! One of the four engines had failed. He tells me to be quiet and I keep anxiously watching the unmoving propeller until we land safely.
Took us 30 minutes to get back from where we started. We switch planes. All goes well after that, refueling in Newfoundland, until we finally get to New York where there is an endless holding pattern. As we circle the City Mom feeds us crackerjacks to keep us quiet after the 24 hours trek across the ocean blue. Back then I had a tendency to get carsick, the air inside the cabin gets warm and humid, the plane banks yet again, I see the earth below us at an impossible angle and my mouthful of Crackerjacks barely makes it to the sick bag.
For our trip back Dad managed to finagle cabins on an ocean liner ferrying Service families to Europe. They even had a teen club with a jukebox below deck! So much better.
The rarely seen tulip moth here shows its remarkable adaptation formed by years of evolution. It disguises itself as rain soaked remnants of a tulip, thus repelling the tulip picker parasite.
Stranded in the boondocks after work Saturday noon, the Port is deserted, no one's going back to the City so I walk: across the railroad bridge, down a long dusty road lined with huge weeds and abandoned stripped cars to the crossroads and the bus stop. All's quiet. I wait in the blazing sun. Suddenly, sirens. An ambulance screeches round the corner, disappears a mile down the road in shimmering heat. A fire engine follows. More ambulances, police, fire engines. They all fade into the distance. It's very quiet again.
Down the road, a dot dissolves into a mirage, a shimmering human figure, coming my way. Looks like dressed all-black. Yup. Tall. Huge backpack. What's that movie ... Road Warrior! Yea that's it. He comes closer. I make out dirty blond hair, a distant look. What worries me is the very clean, shocking-pink teddy bear he's carrying. I have a feeling he's ready to defend it to death.
The bus shimmers into existence, both the bus and the hiker reach me at the same time. "Does this bus go to the airport?" The guy has an Australian accent! I can't decide if he's really eager to know or is a ranting maniac. "No, no ... the bus goes to Newark. The airport is that-a-way, over the bridge to the light, make a right and then a mile or so ..." He nods, gives teddy a squeeze and heads down the road. I get on the bus which drops me off at the PATH station, which gets me back to NYC ... safe at home once more.