Wednesday, May 13, 2009
Can you imagine my dismay coming home from work this afternoon to find this? I called out to Crow as I usually do once I get in since it's his habit when he's around to join me for a cup of tea and a snack. This time all was quiet but he never leaves the house in spring without his tall black umbrella and it was still there in the stand. I crossed the marble foyer, opened the double doors to his library and saw his boots upside down in the air. Naturally, I thought the worst. Crow has been my friend most of my life but he's been around for centuries and has been a friend to many more than me. How could he croak on my watch? Life couldn't be that unfair, could it? Well, maybe it could.
I dashed to his side to see if I could revive him, noticing as I got close he was shaking and trying to catch his breath. Great, there was still time. Did I remember my emergency medical training and how do you practice CPR on a 6' tall elderly Crow? Just as I was getting ready to give him the kiss of life he opened his eyes and said, "Where the heck were you all day?" Obviously, this wasn't a Crow lingering near death's door waiting, hope against hope, for his friend to arrive in time to cradle his feathery head and whisper a tender good-bye.
Instead, he rolled over on the antique Persian carpet he'd received as a gift from Kubla Khan, reached out for the bar of his ancient hand-carved perch, stood and picked up his Lalique crystal goblet to enjoy a beak-full of Remy Martin before taking his Cuban cigar from the 11th century Ming ashtray to enjoy a deep draught of relaxing smoke. Leaning back on the bookcase devoted to the foibles of man he told me how he'd spent the day perusing the news.
First he told me about the 22,000 green jobs that have been outsourced to India since January. Now I have nothing against anybody anywhere finding non-destructive work but you'd think that with millions of unemployed people in this country it might be time to keep some of that work available here. Then he told me about the people in this country who are spending their unemployed time pretending that looking for a job actually is a job. It may well be but it appears to us that manning the barricades might be a better idea right now.
Then he told me the last thing, the one that had made him laugh so hard he fell off his perch. I'd tell you about it too but maybe you'd better watch it yourself: