BLOG THIS! Highly Suspect Wisdom for the Widely Disinterested Masses
Was just sitting in a cafe working when I got a business call. I don't like talking on the phone in public places, so I went outside and stood beneath an overhang since it was (always is) pouring. The cafe is on a busy street that's two lanes both ways. As I'm standing there discussing logistics with someone three-thousand miles away, I saw a rat hunkered down, gnawing on something in the center divider. Cars in the inside lanes kept missing it by a fraction of an inch. Eventually it turned and started to dodge between Escalades, under Accords and F-150's. It was excruciating to watch, a game of daring, brute instinct, or just plain stupidity. I stopped registering the voice on the other end, missed vital information, engrossed while also averting my eyes, sure the rat was about to be crushed in a sickening cinematic spatter, but somehow it threaded through hundreds of cars and made it back to the sidewalk. Which is exactly when (zero embellishment here) a large bird swooped down and dove at it. "Oh fuck" I said. "Wait, what?" the person on the other end said. The rat cut left like Barry Sanders, juked right, and disappeared under a bush. I felt a clutch in my throat, which (after a lifetime of pretending to be a hard-ass) I now often do during commercials about children's hospitals and dog rescues and general interest stories where random people go out of their way to help one another. The call ended, and as I went back inside, the entire cafe was laughing and slapping five. A woman looked up and said "Did you see the rat?" I pretended not to hear, for some reason unwilling to share the drama I thought had been my own. I sat down and tried to compose some sort of deep metaphor, the struggle to live in an age of chaos, the purity of luck and politics of incoherence, missiles and wreckage and the savagery of the (un)natural world. But mainly the fact that, in the end, nothing ever really happens without the benefit of an impartial observer. Of course, that was all nonsense, so I gave up, ordered another coffee, and composed a delicate string of sentences about bands I don't particularly like.