The creature walks, the ghost, the spirit from the vacant house that youngsters see at dusk, over their shoulder or their father’s arm, watching from a cracked window, a curtain moving slightly in the breeze; it walks in autumn cold, clear autumn sun in a new winter coat and realizes, this is what color was made for, a crisp fall day – gold, orange and yellow against a sky of jigsaw-puzzle-blue, birch trees knitting it together with white and black and children in red jackets. The creature is eating lunch, cookies that are not what they promised and something with penne and curry and chicken and it walks a different street, past the artist’s mansion, where the crows do not know its face, not to avoid sharing, but to avoid interacting, and not out of some misanthropy (or miscoronisy) but because this afternoon demands one’s full attention. Pavement, dead leaves, brown grass, hand rails, green grass, tree bark, tar, a scrap of paper, apartment house facades, a mother speaking on a mobile telephone in a back yard while a small bundled toddler plays, facing away from her at an angle of 45 degrees, staring at something. One crow says something to another crow in a friendly voice, not a warning voice. A black limousine tailgates a black SUV. A man jogs past wearing a light summer jogging outfit – shorts and a white t-shirt. The creature walks.
Tag Archives: crows
Walked a different route to the store at lunch today to avoid the crows, because I was just getting salad and salad disappoints them so.
The God of the Office snaps out of extreme (he took this test that’s what it said) depression just like that and takes a walk in the sunshine. He calls his wife no answer. He calls his daughter no answer. He texts his wife. His daughter calls back and they talk for a while but she’s in a bad mood (maybe) and she sounds as if her phone is at the bottom of a long pipe ROWRROWRROWR and then before he can cheer her up the connection breaks off. His wife texts back. He thinks,
Yes this is awesome!
Lilacs and wisteria blooming at the same time.
The God of the Office thinks,
Hopefully no crow will show up until after I’ve been to the deli and have food for him.
One of the Mossad guys from the Israeli embassy is walking down the sidewalk six feet in front of the God of the Office. The God of the Office tries to act nonchalant.
The grey crow swoops down.
Hi, says the God of the Office. I don’t have anything for you now. Hang on ten minutes, til I get back from the store, okay?
He wonders what the Mossad guy is thinking.
A minute later, the crow buzzes him, a real close swoop, he can hear the wind in the feathers.
This is one of his favorite things.
Once again, the God of the Office explains the situation to the crow.
At the store he buys a sandwich. He was going to buy a salad too, but the store is out of plastic forks. So he gets some trail mix and at the cash register breaks down and gets generic Oreos.
They cost practically nothing.
The crow meets him up the street, a couple blocks up from the store, at the usual place. He gives it some curry chicken sandwich and they stand there, watching each other and eating. Then the God of the Office strolls up the hill, towards the office.
The crow comes back and he gives it some more sandwich. At the next street corner, a second crow, a black one, arrives and he tosses it some sandwich, the last piece, but the grey crow flies over and takes it.
Here have some trail mix, says the God of the Office. The black crow pecks at that. The grey crow comes back and the God of the Office gives him some trail mix too.
And that was lunch, mostly.
There were other things of course. The long line at the cash register. Wondering if the Israeli was really Mossad – wouldn’t Mossad agents have better-fitting suits? You’d think. Maybe not, though.
There were a lot of attractive people at the store, and a few less-attractive ones.
There was the Invisible Hand, about which the God of the Office has been thinking, in the sense of it being a bullshit justification for an unjust status quo the exact same way kings used to be kings “by the grace of God.”
Now they’re kings by the grace of the invisible hand.
The God of the Office is trying to figure out what the proper expression is for such bullshit justifications.
And a few other things.
And that was lunch.
Odin wonders, did kittens have something to do with the loss of his one eye and he made up the story about the spring of wisdom because it sounded more divine?
He wonders, is that what happened to Van Gogh and he made up the whole cut off his own ear story because mad artist sounded better in the 19th century than kitten?
See Odin woke up at 3.30 with a kitten gnawing on his ear, making nomnomnom sounds and purring sounds, and smacking its lips.
It also bathed his entire head as he tried to fall back to sleep.
You ever try to fall back to sleep in the middle of the night with a kitten chewing on your head? he asks the crows.
Of course not.
Of course not. The crows aren’t even there, Odin is just imagining them today. His wife packed him a lunch and he ate it early in his office and now he’s sitting there while workmen drill holes in brick walls on all sides and concrete walls and do other things similarly noisy to floors and ceilings with other power tools.
What say the slain?
Here is what I wish for you: that one day you lay aside the millstone of recognition for just a second and driving down the street, say, you see a young woman walking toward you on the sidewalk, smiling in the morning sunshine, on her way to work, dark hair flowing in the breeze and unaware of you and the sight of her makes you happy and you think, what a beautiful, together, strong, happy, professional-looking, competent, smart, intelligent, interesting, charismatic and unique woman and only then after this objective reaction to a stranger, realize she is your daughter.
What say the hanged?
Seeing yourself at the center of creation is a failure of imagination.
Weather is weird.
This is no season. This is no proper season. Seventy degrees in November.
This is no season.
How are you, he tells the kid.
There should be fog covering that field, but there is only warm dry air.
How are you, how is a person supposed to answer that, he says.
Someone asked me that, he says, once, and it totally threw me because I paused to think about it instead of just say, fine.
The kid chuckles. Yeah.
I was all like, objectively or subjectively?
By whose standards?
What time frame are we looking at?
You walk to the store. A kid has a party, another kid says, your cat is so cute, the first kid says, that’s not my cat, and suddenly you’re walking to the store for extra catfood on your lunch break, plus something from the bakery in case a crow passes your way.
Of course it does.
Every day is the same. Get up, make coffee, read, clean something, feed cats, take shower, get dressed, go to work. Get lunch, or don’t get lunch. Read. Go home. Clean something, go to bed.
At a certain level of magnification, anyway. At a microscopic, sub-atomic level, I suppose things vary wildly. This electron will only ever be exactly here once.
This quark, now you see it, now you don’t.
Just say you’re fine.
Odin looked at his toe it was all bloody.
He thought a minute.
Oh yeah he stubbed it earlier in the day.
One mystery solved.
Odin walked to the store, not raining, crow recognized him, followed him to the store.
Do animals have consciousness? They think. They solve problems, is that consciousness? Also crows lie and steal, they look over their shoulders when they’re doing something shady to see if anyone is watching.
Here, Odin gives the crow a hard sausage. A piece of one. Then he gives the crow a second piece to see what it will do.
It studies the pieces. It arranges them side by side, perpendicular, then parallel until it has them arranged in such a fashion that it can get both into its beak at the same time and do something – hide them or fly off with them, Odin doesn’t stick around to watch.
It could have just flown off with one, left the other, come back for it later, but a second crow was watching so it had to take both.
What say the hanged?
I seen you on the dock letting the sunrise warm your face, you were smiling.
I remember how you liked to pick cigarette butts out of the gutter, back when you were still learning to walk.
Second-prettiest eyes I ever saw, some mechanic, brown eyes glowing amber in autumn sunlight.
Prettiest: green-eyed girl in an airport long time ago stopped me in my tracks.
What say the slain?
Nihilism is childish.
Agnosticism is where it’s at.
Certainty is for morans.
Who knows? Not me.
Who knows? Not me. Let’s find out.
Watch goes down the street. The street is lined with the heads of guys in suits hollering POW and KABANG and WATCH OUT!
Watch tunes them out. A crow follows him, he notices, flying from tree to tree.
Mechanical spiders are running all over. I SEE YOU ARE GOING TO THE STORE MAY I RECOMMEND A SALAD? says one.
A second one says, PEOPLE WHO BUY SALAD OFTEN BUY SOME FRUIT AS WELL.
Watch tunes them out too. He notices how wide the streets are without traffic.
It is a sunny day. Warm, early fall, is there any better season?
Gravity is light today if you can ignore the distractions.
And the air is full of flowers.
Watch gets a sandwich. He gets a long one because he wants to see how many crows he can feed on his way back to the office.
The line at the cash register is slow because the guy in front of him is having problems with his cash card.
REJECTED, says the cashier. The young guy tries again, a little more flustered.
REJECTED, says the woman again.
I’ll have to come back, the young guy says.
He has a German accent, notices Watch.
I’ll get it, Watch says, but no one hears him.
He takes out his wallet and gives the cashier a ten. I’ll get it, he says.
OH, she says.
The young guy doesn’t notice and starts leaving without his stuff – a box of sugar and some snack for lunch.
IT’S OKAY, says the cashier. THIS GUY PAID.
Outside the young guy says thanks.
My pleasure, says Watch.
He feeds two crows on the way back – the one who had been following him, and a big black one watching him from a tree.
POW KABANG! holler the heads.
Take the afternoon off, says Watch.