Saturday, April 18, 2020

“My Crickets: A Little Decameron #23”


I need to tell the story of our courtyard bees. Every once in a while they appear en masse in our pool, drowning. Why is quite inexplicable. Have they, like lemmings, suddenly engaged in a kind of mass suicidal pact?
     Nature doesn't always act rationally. And the concept of the "survival of the fittest" doesn't always make sense.
     One day, when I was still regularly swimming, I saw this bee terror, and loving these beings who keep our flowers blooming and help to create our honey supplies, I tried to carefully scoop them up, one by one, into my hands to return them to the sunny concrete around the pool. After a few moments, some woke up again to fly off, but many others were dead by the time this mini-lifeguard-saving effort took place.
    Two bees stung me in my attempts, but I didn't mind since I had been able to save a few.
    Yesterday, our president encouraged just such a lemming-like behavior, provoking his followers in several Midwestern states (Michigan and Minnesota among them) to gather together in just such a suicidal act, perhaps infecting each other with COVID-19 as well as bringing it back to their children. Moreover, he incited them, in a time when he has done absolutely nothing to truly support communal activities or to save people from this pandemic, to openly rebel against their mostly female governor's attempts to help their citizens to survive.
     This is not just lack of intelligence and empathy, we have now moved into Kafka territory. Logic no longer holds any sway.
     We did eat Rarebit last night, and it was good--although not the best we've ever made. Howard uses muffins (we couldn't get our favorite brand, Thomas') with a slice of tomato beneath the cheese topping for the rarebit
        So I had to feed the little cricket mashed blueberries again, with water. I can only imagine him belting out, like Ethel Merman in the original version of Gypsy, Stephen Sondheim's great lyric from "Some People," "goodbye to blueberry pie!"
      Tonight, it is our Cesar salad. Howard just needs to make a run for, of all things, croutons, maybe some fresh Parmesan cheese!
     Maybe tonight for our cricket I’ll serve some banana, strawberries, or peaches. Our friend Toni Simon suggested he might like a plate of small insects, but given where we live that is quite impossible, although they do sometimes crawl up the drainpipe to my bathroom. But they move fast and are difficult to murder. I'll just leave them to the delectation of the my still thrashing cricket. This is nearly the end of his 6th week, but he's still going strong. He's certainly one of "the fittest," this small being who has sought respite in our house.
     The mourning doves were out early (4:45 a.m.) and are still at it now (7:40 a.m.). No neighbors seem to have risen. Just our natural beings who vaguely surround us.
     I think I'll have sardines for lunch. I love them.

Los Angeles, April 18, 2020
Reprinted from Facebook (April 2020).

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