Article: 178564 of talk.bizarre From: firstname.lastname@example.org (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: <email@example.com> Summary: reposted for Fail to Suck Day Status: O ~From: firstname.lastname@example.org (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 shoulder. 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.