Talking to Pigeons


I don’t know about you, but I talk to myself. And not under my breath either. I talk right out loud – at home, at the office, on the street. It’s as if I’m narrating the most boring details of my life as I’m doing them.

And perhaps that’s the key. Narrating those boring details somehow makes them less boring. Or maybe the key is that I like the sound of my own voice?

Anyway, that’s what I do. A whole lot. So much that most of the time I don’t even notice that I’m doing it. Except for yesterday. I definitely noticed.

I’m walking down the street at lunch time, running errands as I usually do. I stop and give the man playing the pan flute and guitar (at the same time) some money because he made me smile. I notice that the giant businessman on the autopsy table


has been replaced by much less interesting silhouettes of flying birds (crows, I think, though they might be pigeons). Then I walk through the hordes of pigeons that, appropriately, fill the street outside the bird silhouettes. And I talk to them.

I say you’re so fat to a lovely plump grey, blue and white pigeon – definitely female, I think. I say you gotta watch your cholesterol to another fat brownish pigeon – a male is my guess. Then I ask why are you so skinny? of a slim black pigeon – adolescent girl for sure. Then I think, if I’m talking to pigeons, I should also take their photographs. So I whip out my cellphone and start snapping pictures – not very good ones, because I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but it’s tough to get pigeons to stay still. You walk toward them and they move away.

This is all very well and good, part of my usual routine, until a hand touches my shoulder. Talking to pigeons? a voice asks and I turn to find one of the men I work with looking at me dubiously and I can’t blame him. Not only am I talking to pigeons, I’m doing portraits.

Will this change my penchant for talking to myself? Nope. Will it make me more careful about when and where I do it? Perhaps for a short time. But, in the end, I will continue to entertain myself – and, obviously, those around me – by narrating the boring details of my life.



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