Sunday, May 23, 2010

On The Bus

In the city
on a bus
stopped in traffic.
I look out the window.
A bird sits atop a parking meter
singing its best for
all those who would hear.
An unusual bird
perhaps a young goldfinch.
I feel a sense of wonder.
Such an urban place,
if I hadn't been on the bus
I never would have noticed it.
I felt blessed by its presence.
You see, I have this thing about birds:
some times they seem to appear to me
in the oddest places and times.

Like the ducklings playing in the water left
in muddy tire ruts-
in a city backyard.
Or the goslings taking their time
crossing the highway in front of my car
when I'm late for an important interview.

Birds come to me to as a sign
of reassurance or provide
a change in perspective.
To make me laugh-
to brighten my day.
To help me step out for a moment
and see things differently.

I turn to the person across the aisle and quip:
'I wonder if it put a quarter in the meter?'
He looked for a moment and replied:
'Or if someone put a quarter in the bird?'

Those around us laugh.
Thank you, God.
copyright 2010 thebloggedsink

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Creative Writing, May 17, 2010

(note: I suggested a prompt, which was accepted by Meg, the wonderful teacher of the class)
Prompt: Youthful Exuberance
Where did the prompt 'Youthful Exuberance' come from? Well, bear with me while I digress a bit: During the morning art class someone remarked about getting a can of Coke out of the slot tagged Pepsi from the new pop machine. That brought back memories of a bottle-pop machine at a church I attended while young. This particular machine always had a slot labeled "surprise" with a note under the label advising it us this slot would be filled with a variety of selections: over stock of the major brands or the current specials in the supermarket. In short, we could put our 35 cents!! in and get a "SURPRISE"

Except what would usually happen is the other four slots would sell-out first, and if you had 35 cents after playing volleyball for two hours and were really thirsty and wanted a soda- you had to settle for a 'surprise.' Now, usually this turned out okay. You might get Bubble-Up, or Hire's Root Beer, or Tom Moore Strawberry soda. Then came the year Pepsi released the Slice brand. These were the front runners of 'healthier' soda pop: they contained 10% fruit juice and came in several flavors like lemon-lime, pineapple, mandarin orange-which weren't bad tasting. But Apple Slice I thought tasted like battery acid. And I ended up with 'surprise' Apple Slice for three weeks straight--as did everyone else in the volleyball league...:[

Now, back to 'youthful exuberance'. I related this tale to the art class, at which point someone asked, "How do you know what battery acid tastes like?"
I laughed and said, "as a kid, did you every take a transistor radio battery, one of those square-ish 9-volt ones-and lick it?" To this there was general laughter, and I knew I wasn't the only one who remembered doing that!

Meg had never heard of such a thing (she remarked that transistor radios didn't exist when she grew up--but we know she isn't that old). So I explained. The +/- electrodes are side-by-side on a 9-volt. When you licked it you would get a bitter, metallic taste. The water from your tongue would then 'charge' the battery, and you would then take the battery and place it on an unsuspecting persons arm or neck and they would get a minor zinger from it.

Ah yes, Youthful Exuberance indeed. This led to a general discussion of other misadventures of our youth. And I confessed to once--only once! sticking a table knife in to an electrical outlet. I was playing house with my brother at the time. Somehow I decided to pretend the outlet was a knife sharpener---Mom was about 10 feet away in the kitchen. She heard a buzz and a snapping noise, and turned just in time to see sparks arc-ing out of the outlet and the knife flying out of my hand. I wasn't hurt, at least not by the shock; but the spanking I received was another matter-- and the outlet bore a black mark until it was painted over a few years later. The knife tip had a little c-shaped area melted in the tip, a reminder for years to come: oh, this is the knife Judy put in the electrical outlet...