Tag Archives: animals

sorry, jerry lewis.

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when i was 7 or 8 years old

my father came home

from his job at the ad agency

with a new pet for our family

and it just happened to be a baby alligator.

he was not more than 9 or 10 inches long 

 in a small box and cute as could be

i was really excited

and pictured myself playing with him and his friends

(just as in the vintage postcard above)

i thought he would just fit right in

with my family

in our colonial house

in the suburbs 

though, there were a few ‘glitches’ with this scenario.

  1. my family had no idea how to choose or take care of a pet.
  2. i had no idea how to take care of and raise an alligator.
  3. my father had become the owner of the alligator through some sort of crazy ad campaign, so it had probably been through a rough time in its life already.
  4. i felt sorry for him and he looked scared.
  5. i was determined to mother him and make him feel better, though no clue how.
  6. i had no idea what to feed an alligator, so i fed him lettuce and water and thought my sisters would help me catch flies for him.
  7. he already had a name given to him by the agency – “jerry lewis”
  8. my parents pretty much left me on my own to figure it out. 
  9. writing this out, it all seems even crazier than it was. 

i had my alligator for a few days and i was very excited to have my friends in my class meet him. when the big day came for show and tell,  i carefully carried him in his little cardboard box, climbed onto the bus, and jerry and i headed off to school. i remember it was a bit chilly that day, but i didn’t know anything about natural alligator habitats, so i didn’t think much of the weather. i was bursting with excitement.

i put my box on my desk and when i was called up for the big reveal, i opened by box, only to find that jerry lewis had passed away on the way to school and was now stiff as a board. i couldn’t believe it and i felt so sad for him. looking back, i’m sure that any baby alligator given away in a promotion, was not long for this world, but i had hoped that we would be together for a long while. my teacher was very nice about it, and helped me wrap up his box and i rode home that day on the bus with jerry, ready to have a funeral for him. i learned so many life lessons from my short time with jerry lewis. – r.i.p.

(not me, or jerry, but how i imagined us at show and tell)

 

” i go where the action is.”

-jerry lewis

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stop time.

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two of my grandies at the detroit zoo

experiencing the butterfly house

firsthand

and finding 

just who exactly

is patiently sitting with them

waiting for his identity to be discovered. 

“wonder is the heaviest element on the periodic table.

even a tiny fleck of it stops time.”

― Diane Ackerman

attention.

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when we set out on our hike 

to see what spring animals

were out there

we thought maybe

we’d see a bear

awakening from a long winter’s nap

though we most likely 

scared any creature

who happened to be in our oncoming path

or most anywhere in the vicinity

with our marching and laughing and yelling and jumping

and then

we looked closer

and at last

found an animal

passed over by many

who was not afraid of us

just waiting to to be discovered 

a single ant. 


“life is denied by lack of attention, whether it be to cleaning windows or trying to write a masterpiece.”

-nadia boulanger

be a good one.

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something is lost or wandering.

(*question and response chain on my neighborhood website – mixed in among the recommendations for contractors, giveaways, news and upcoming events)

                                                                                                                             —
*Anyone lose a peacock? peahen?
A. C. from Crest/Washington · 8h ago
Was leaving the house a little after 11 maybe and a large peacock or peahen appeared wandering through the Kenwood backyards heading north.

P. V. from Crest/Washington · 8h ago
are you sure it wasnt a turkey?

C. G. from Dexter-Miller · 7h ago
A wild turkey has been seen on the South West Side in the last couple days.

A. C.  from Crest/Washington · 5h ago
 A friend and I were at the end of the drive way when we saw it come through the spaces between the garages and at first I thought I was really losing it because it looked like a vulture perching and then for a split second I did think it was a turkey but it was gone. I swear sometimes you never know in this neighborhood.

S. P. from Crest/Washington · 5h ago
Yes, saw the turkeys last year ( or year before ? ) walking up and around Fair Street near Glendale. I thought there used to be three of them.
J.  S.  from Dicken · 1h ago
Well. I can think of even a few turkeys who think they themselves are peacocks!

image credits: eric carle, pinterest