Article: 178564 of talk.bizarre
From: (Ed Gaillard)
Newsgroups: talk.bizarre
Subject: of a feather (repost)
Date: 1 Dec 1994 02:35:52 -0500
Organization: Putting the Ding in the _Ding an sich_
Lines: 69
Message-ID: <3bjuco$>
Summary: reposted for Fail to Suck Day
Status: O

~From: (Ed Gaillard)
~Organization: Radio Free Hades
~Summary: sappy sentimentalism with no redeeming social value
~Keywords: wings;  three-cliche story game
~Date: Sat, 27 Feb 1993 18:45:51 GMT
~Subject: of a feather

I threw caution to the winds.  Caution tried to circle back over the
projects, but was caught by the strong southerly wind, and flew up
Amsterdam towards City College.  His sleek black form melted into the
distance like sooty snow on a manhole.  I knew he would be back soon,
instinctively returning like a well-trained homing pigeon.  For a
while, though, I was free.

When I got to the bar, Sarah was just finishing a drink.  Good timing.
She always left after just two drinks.  I took the seat next to her,
and told the bartender that I was buying her next one. The bartender
looked at me strangely -- he had never seen me so lively.  Of course,
he had also never seen me without a bird in my pocket.  Sarah, though,
seemed happy to see me.

I'm usually a lousy conversationalist, but that night, everything
clicked.  My jokes were funny; my stories pointed; the obvious quirks
in my personality meshed with hers, now that my caution was flying
solo, elsewhere.

We were both collectors, even -- she of pocket-watches, I of bats. I
found out later that she thought I meant flying nocturnal mammals.
They're actually Louisville Sluggers.  Anyway, that's why she
suggested, later, that we go back to *her* place.

In the sooty grey light of dawn I heard a rap-tap-tapping at the
window. Sarah stirred beside me, but did not wake.  I was awake
instantly. I knew that noise.

I opened the window.  A small black bird, remarkably like a starling,
flew in.  He flitted around the bedroom, looking for a place to perch,
but there was no bust of Pallas here. Eventually, he settled on my

Sarah was awake now.

"What's *that*?"  she asked.  "My caution." I replied wearily.  "My
main personality trait, so dominant that he has a physical form."  She
said nothing.  "I threw him to the winds yesterday. I needed to be rid
of him for awhile.  You can probably guess why."  She was still
silent, head cocked expectantly towards the window.

A small brown duck waddled in from the fire escape.

I didn't say a word.  "My responsibility," she said softly.  "I ducked
her a few days ago."  I kept quiet.  "I can change her form." Suddenly
there was no duck in the room, and two starlings.  They eyed each
other warily.  "I ducked her, and abandoned her at the lake in Central
Park.  I hoped she would stay away for a while..."

Neither of us is much on nightlife, although we occasionally go out
for dinner and a movie, or whatever.  Often, on sunny afternoons, we
take a walk in the neighborhood. The birds sit on our shoulders.
Sometimes, we visit the local hardware store, and laugh at the
locksmith.  This is pretty rude of us, but he has a good nature, which
sings all the day from a cage in the corner of the shop.  The
locksmith doesn't mind us much; he was young once, too.

Walking home, we wonder who all the pigeons belong to.

-ed g.