Yellow Bird

I was walking home the other day and saw a yellow bird. But of course there is much more to this story. I was walking home on Oriole Parkway, a Toronto street in an otherwise leafy and urban area with a volume of traffic and illicit speed that makes it more like a major roadway, although it is lined with multi-million dollar houses (but come to think of it, every street in Toronto is lined with multi-million dollar houses, but I digress).

Anyhow, as I passed one of the driveways I noticed a whole bunch of those little brown birds that are kind of like a smaller, cuter pigeons because they spend all their time scavenging on random pieces of pavement. Except one of the small brown birds was yellow. Really yellow. Like canary yellow. Like maybe even a real canary. I don’t know if this was a case of a swan mistaking a flock of ugly ducklings for his peeps, but I do know that this yellow bird was not where it should be. However, I figured there was no practical way to rescue it and by the time anyone saw a posting on Craigslist it would be long gone. So the mystery remains.

But that is one good thing about taking the time to observe the world around you when you are walking – you never know what you will see. Yesterday I think I thwarted some spy’s secret mission by picking up a USB drive that was lying under a bush near a park bench very close to a midtown subway station. It makes perfect sense that this would be an ideal ‘exchange’ point: lots of people going to and fro. I haven’t looked at what’s on the drive yet, so I don’t know whether or not I need to go into hiding. Stay tuned (although come to think of it, if I decide I need to go into hiding perhaps it would be a good idea not to broadcast it to the internet).

While out for a walk one day last spring, I found a huge floral arrangement on the curb. Obviously, somebody had received it for some occasion but who knows what? Birth? Birthday? Wedding? Death? Retirement? Hard to tell from the flowers themselves, although the preponderance of lilies might indicate more of an end of life thing than a beginning of life thing. Anyhow, there are several strange things about this. Usually any situation that calls for flowers results in more than one arrangement, yet only one was kicked to the curb. Plus, the flowers were all in perfect condition. I carted it home and cobbled three vases full of floral profusion that lasted nearly two weeks. And made my house smell like a funeral parlor.

There are many other mysteries you can encounter simply by walking around. What’s with those single shoes? A single glove I understand, but how do you misplace a shoe? And why would you be carrying a small fold up ironing board on the train? Anyhow, now I feel guilty about that bird…

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