Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Sarah and the Geese

(No, this does not end up like Leda and the Swan, thank goodness)
Geese and I are not on as friendly of terms as pigeons and I, we are.

Pigeon Handling

People sure do look at you funny when you're carrying a pigeon down 6th avenue in downtown Pittsburgh. Regular readers of my blog know my bizarre connection to pigeons (totem animal?). This morning I found a hurt pigeon on the side of the road with a car about to run over her. I'm assuming she's a her because she was all grey, with no spots of color, but I don't really know. Anyways, I scooped her up and held her close to my body as I carried her to the spot where I met Jimmy feeding the pigeons up above the parking garage. Jimmy had told me that there was one lady who took the hurt pigeons home to mend, and I was hoping she would show up. I stood there with her in my arms for a while, but she was obviously scared of me, chest all puffed up, so I set her under a bush where I'm hoping she can hide from predators for a bit. One lady who helps feed the pigeons, Therese, showed up, but she only feeds them. She said that she had the lady's phone number who knows more about what to do when they are hurt and would try to call her. We tried to get the hurt pigeon to eat some seeds, but no luck. We left some for her. There was another pigeon with a big piece of bread with a whole in the middle stuck around it's neck, but it was still able to fly and wouldn't let us get close enough to remove it. The life of a pigeon is apparently not that safe. Pigeons are so dependent on humans. There are only pigeons where humans are. So do we treat them as dirty pests to be at best ignored, or do we show them kindness and charity? Even the Koran offers a suggestion:
"He who takes pity on a sparrow and spares his life, Allah (God) will be merciful to him on the day of judgement. Do you not see how Allah is praised by those in heaven and earth? The very birds praise Him as they wing their flight"- The Koran (24.36):

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

On Thin Ice

Geese standing on thin ice on a pond at Allegheny Commons Park, North Side, Pittsburgh.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Marketing Design

Since I've began my foray into the graphic design world (i.e. trying to improve my web design skills, doing some copy writing, trying to teach myself photoshop and freehand, etc.), I have started noticing design everywhere. Sometimes commercial design simply astounds me.

Take Wrigley's 5 Gum for instance. I, too, fell prey to the clever packaging. It's about the size of a carton of cigarettes, and done in black with a different brilliant color for each flavor. Here is my flavor choice, cobalt.

Since anyone can get free condoms at any Planned Parenthood and various other locations, I guess the condom industry has had to step up to the marketing design plate. Meet ONE, the condom that comes in a shiny tin (aka sleek metal case with a plastic hinged back for easy dispensing!)
Even the individually wrapped condoms have a design--a graphic illustration, along with a witty sound byte...See samples HERE

And look-- you too can design a condom! (AKA be the "Rembrandt of Rubber, the Leonardo of Latex, the Picasso of Prophylactics")

What WILL they think of next?

Why, clever instructions that are still informative of course!

Methods's airfreshner (aka pluggable aroma pill) maintains a witty sense of humour whilst instructing users in its preparation (italics are mine added to the parts i found particularly apropos):
1. Holding fragrance bottle upright, remove cap. Do not remove wick. It's pretty important.
2. Keeping fragrance bottle upright, insert into bottom of aroma pill.
3. Rotate bottle clockwise until tight. You know, righty-tighty.
Rotate plug of aroma pill to accomodate vertical or horizontal wall outlet. Insert aroma pill into wall outlet with glass bottle pointing down. Do not turn sideways or else fragrance oil will spill. Gravity is mean like that.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

My Reading at MWFA Gallery

My Poetry Workshop had their end of term reading in conjunction with the Non-Fiction workshop at the Most Wanted Fine Art Gallery in Garfield. My friends Rachel and Vijay came out to show their support.


My Grandma Charlotte died almost a year ago now. I wrote this poem recently about how it takes the brain a while to catch up, at least the subconscious part that still wants to call her and tell her things, but how also...we don't always want it to catch up...


I just absentmindedly drew
an angry clown smoking
a stogie. Read that
Rorschach inkblot.

You used to draw
a clown for me on paper placemats.
I remember some of the parts
looked like sausage links or balloons,
but I can’t remember the order.

I want chocolate milk with a bendy straw
and blueberry pancakes from Pappan’s Restaurant.
There’s a Wendy’s now where Pappan’s used to be.

I want to call and ask you if you think Stabler and Olivia
should hook up on Law and Order: SVU
and how do you spell Mariska’s last name?
It is hard to remember again and again
that you have died.

Hargitay sounds like hard to say.
What was that song you sang
to me that went paddy raddy bumsteay?
I’m trying to say I don’t want
even my memories
to die.

Monday, December 10, 2007

More Photos from Jalsah VI

The Phat Man Dee graced us with her lovely singing voice.... "I'm just a Jewish girl singing Turkish..."

The view at one point from the stage. The crowd got even larger than this, then dwindled down to a few stalwart souls lounging on the pillows. Phat Man Dee may have invented horizontal karaoke....

Carmine took a break from the Oud for the doumbek to accompany Jeff on the sitar.

Sunday, December 9, 2007


I ATTENDED JALSAH 6 PITTSBURGH at Your Inner Vagabond in Lawrenceville. Nancy played her clarinet, and I played middle eastern beats with a bodhran! It was fantabulous. My arm is toooo sore from playing my drum to say much more. But thanks CARMINE, MELISSA, MARK, BETH, and everyone else for a great night and for letting me jam with you. Here are some pics I took, more later.

Snowy Walk

On Wednesday I decided to walk to work again. This time I made it. 27 minutes in the snow, not bad! (and it was uphill both ways haha) The Rachel Carson bridge was a bit slickery, but not too bad!