Sunday, April 26, 2009

Beautiful Little Bird

I slept in this morning almost until nine o'clock. I do this sometimes on the weekend as a treat, and usually I have few if any errands to run, and have all day to work while watching stupid science fiction movies on the Sci-Fi Channel. The Sci-Fi Channel was not cooperating today however, and was running something called "WCG Ultimate Gamer," some kind of game show about video games. No, I had to resort to good old KTLA, channel 5 here in Los Angeles, to watch stupid Sci-Fi movies. I'm watching the Michael Crichton vehicle, "Sphere," as I write this, staring Dustin Hoffman and Sharon Stone. Not one of his best. I just saw Queen Latifah get eaten by jellyfish.
I remember hanging over the side of my ship when I was in the navy, painting Haze Gray all over the place, and the water of the San Diego Bay below me, with about a trillion jellyfish floating around. I don't know why they were there. They went away after a while.
I was sitting at my desk reading my Email, when I heard a "Tweet," from outside my box. A bird, I thought to myself, must be stuck out there.
I promptly forgot about it and resumed what I was doing, until I heard another, "Tweet." I quickly forgot about that one to.
I did have some errands to run today. I wanted to go to the 99 cent store, and the library to pick up some books they were holding for me. I left my box, and walking down one of the hallways of the structure that encloses my box, I noticed the sparrow.
The poor little thing had got in here somehow, and was now wanting to get back out badly. It was fluttering madly in one of the hallways window sills, hovering against the glass, not understanding why it couldn't get out to the street below that it could plainly see. It was clearly terrified.
As I approached it redoubled it's efforts to break through the glass, while keeping at least one eye on the huge monster that was coming its way. I knew that if I didn't catch it and get it out of here it would probably die, so I put my two hands together in a cup, and quickly enclosed the frantic animal against the glass. It tried to get away, and after one little petrified ,"squeak!" I got a lose but firm hold on the bird, and headed for the front door.
I guess the little fellow had no choice in the matter, so it made no further noises as I went to release it. Hardy was standing just outside, as is his custom.
"Hey, where you going he asked," as I released the sparrow, who flew off to the west toward Alameda, without looking back.
"You had that bird in your box?" Hardy asked.
"No, Hardy. It was in the hallway."
"Oh. You must be pretty fast to catch that little bird."
"That's what my girlfriend says, Hardy."
My good deed done for the day, I got down to business. I had a wondrous breakfast of Frosted Flakes and hot dog (My lovely case manager, Erin, brought several packages of hot dogs (with buns) to Movie Day. I ate three there (Erin had one. I wrote to her in an Email that she eats like a beautiful little bird, as I've seen her take a bite off of a single piece of popcorn, as if a whole popcorn piece was too much of a mouthful), and there was still an unopened pack of dogs left over which she gave to me as no one else wanted them. I've never been known to turn down a good pack of dogs in my life). Then took off, catching an 18 bus to downtown.
As we approached Los Angeles Street, the driver announced, "We're going on a little detour."
I didn't go with them, but exited at Los Angeles, and continued west to Broadway.
The street was blocked off at State St. I had forgotten it was Fiesta Broadway day.
Festival de Fiesta Broadway claims to be the largest Cinco de Mayo celebration in the world, with an expected 500,000 Cinco de Mayo celebrators attending the 24 blocks dedicated to the event.
Wikipedia tells us: "Cinco de Mayo (Spanish for "Fifth of May") is a regional holiday in Mexico, primarily celebrated in the state of Puebla, with some limited recognition in other parts of Mexico. The holiday commemorates the Mexican army's unlikely defeat of French forces at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862, under the leadership of Mexican General Ignacio Zaragoza Seguin.
While Cinco de Mayo has limited or no significance nationwide in Mexico, the date is observed in the United States and other locations around the world as a celebration of Mexican heritage and pride. However, a common misconception in the United States is that Cinco de Mayo is Mexico's Independence Day. Mexico's Independence Day is actually September 16 (dieciséis de septiembre in Spanish), which is the most important national patriotic holiday in Mexico."
For the life of me I've never understood why they have this celebration in April, instead of, lets say, next Sunday, the 3rd of May. Anyway, it's mainly a corporate affair, sponsored by the likes of AT&T, and State Farm Insurance. As far as I could see, north and south on Broadway from Fifth Street, were carnival like stands where you can win prizes by throwing penny's into fish bowls, basketballs into hoops, inflatable playgrounds for kids, nacho venders, corporate stands where they were advertising corporate services, and 500,000 mostly Hispanic visitors.
I quickly moved past the throng to the rapid bus stop at Fifth and Grand, caught a 720 to Wilshire and Fairfax, to the big 99 cent store. I purchased two bottles of instant coffee, three disposable razors, a tub of fake butter, two cans of honey roasted peanuts, a small head of lettuce, a package of fake cheese slices, two packages of Bologna, a box of microwave popcorn, and a plastic bottle of jalapeno mustard. I then reversed course, caught a different 720 back to downtown.
I made a stop at the Central Library and picked up three books, "Publishing a Blog with Blogger," (which I hope to do someday) "Start Your Own Blogging Business," and Christopher Buckley's new novel, "Supreme Courtship."
I was then forced to walk back through the throng, catching an 18 back to my box.
Just in time to witness Queen Latifah's horrible demise.
And I'll always remember that beautiful little bird.

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