Death of a Sparrow

Everything that lives, dies.  That to me is a given.  Or is it everything that lives poops.  I heard a famous scientist say that.  Well both are true I suppose, but I’m not sure if that last factoid pertains to vegetation as well.  And some of those trees in California seem to never kick the bucket.

Don’t worry.  I’m not depressed.  I have every reason to be, but it’s just not part of my genetic makeup.  I’m more of the anxious worry-wart type.  Even many of my old anxieties and phobias are gone.  Well, why should I let the fact that I haven’t sold a print in at least two months depress me?  Or that my ongoing Crohn’s disease has returned.  After all, I’ve had it for at least a few decades.  And I have good care from the Sinai guys.  Never mind that I’m in the middle of applying for Medicaid, and food stamps, and I have a strong desire to declare bankruptcy.

I also have great support from a wonderful social worker who is helping me through this crisis.  And family gathers around.

But it did get me to thinking about all the recent suicides.  A lot of them by hanging.  Again – I’ve never been that depressed that I’d contemplate anything like that.  But I did have a dream last night, and it may have been the result of watching the Pink Panther Returns – or the Revenge of the Pink Panther.  You know, the poor inspector Dryfus goes insane and hires all the hitmen in the world to whack Inspector Clouseau.

In my dream, I was looking for a good place to hang myself – and finally decided to use a belt and tie it up to the shower rod.  Now this was a mistake because nothing in my bathroom can withstand the slightest amount of weight.  And while I was tying the belt to the shower curtain rod, I leaned on it a little too hard and the whole thing came down, and I tumbled around and somehow managed to turn on the shower as I fell.

Two seconds later, as I was lying on the mismatched bathroom tiles – theres a rapping on my front door.  It’s my crazy downstairs neighbor (think Kramer) tap tap tapping, and I see that the bathtub has overflowed and I’m completely drenched.  Well it is a dream.  Not even a minor nightmare.  In fact, I’m laughing a little bit like Inspector Dryfus. (I’m sure that’s not how you spell his name but so what.)

And I slosh over and open the door and my Kramer is gesticulating that water is pouring down in his bathroom while he was trying to take a bath – and of course clean the dishes at the same time.  He finds my belt in the middle of the pool of water and picks it up.  It’s actually a nice belt that I bought in the Southwest, that has some engraving on it that I never knew what it meant.  And he tells me that it’s a belt worn and created by Johnny Cash.  Didn’t I know that?

He carefully dries it off and shows me how Johnny wrote engraved the notes of Will the Circle be Unbroken on the belt,and his initials are on it as well.  He’s got a friend who knows someone who can find out how much it’s worth, but if its genuine – it could be worth a few hundred thousand!

It is weird.  Even in my dreams, my attempt at suicide has a happy ending.

And speaking of bucket lists – I have an actual bucket on my list.  I want to ride around NYC in one of those bucket trucks. Maybe down Lexington.  Nice skinny avenue.  And spend a day hoisted in the bucket – maybe up 30 feet or so.  And take pictures of NYC from the moving bucket.  In fact, for years I’ve tried to bribe the bucket truck drivers to let me just get a quick ride in the bucket.  I’ve offered as much as $50 for a bucket ride.  No takers yet.

Then I looked into renting a bucket truck.  Expensive and I have to pay for the drivers time etc.  All sorts of legal crap. But well that bucket ride is the only really big thing on my bucket list.  The other, which shouldn’t be too difficult to arrange, is to have a comic pie fight.  You know with three people.  All worked out so that there’s a kicker at the end, and someone walks in at the last minute, maybe a cop, to break things up and the guy who was supposed to get the pie ducks and the cop gets it.

I’ve gotten a lot of pleasure reading a book about Pie Fights in Vaudeville and how they were done.  Lemon Merengue was very popular because it would just slowly slide down the face, and give the Cop a long time for a deadpan look.

What any of this has to do with dead sparrows on sidewalks, probably nothing.  It’s one of the nice things of writing in your own blog, you can ramble on about things that may not be related.  That, I think is one of my specialties as a writer.  Well, so there you have it.  I couldn’t decide whether to call it Death of a Sparrow, or Dead Sparrow.  But I do like sparrows.  Even more than pigeons.  I never stooped down with my aching knees and joints to photograph a dead pigeon.  But a dead sparrow is much sadder.  Did it just suddenly fall from the sky?

That’s how it looks.

A few lyrical quotes come to mind: But coming down, that’s the hardest thing.  (Learning to fly).

You know what blood looks like in black and white?  Shadows.  Shadows!  John Prine (Lake Marie)

I tried it in b&w, but thought the coloring of the bird and redness of the blood were important.

Say good-night Gracie.  Good night.

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