seaslug

I'm not Captain Planet

For some reason, I thought yesterday was Earth Day. I went down to my local Starbucks to buy a latte for all the endangered wildlife in the local area. As it turned out, there were only squirrels and skate punks. Neither of them are endangered, as much as we might wish otherwise.

As it was the afternoon, Bob, the crazy homeless guy, who lives somewhere in the waterfront park, came wandering by and dropped his backpack at the front door, as he does every day, ready to start bringing in the chairs and tables from the patio to earn a free drink and a few extra bucks. You can't immediately tell that Bob is mad as a hatter. Sure, he has unwashed hair, and a long scraggly beard. But that just makes him look like your average one percenter. There's a bike club up the street, after all. No, you have to talk to Bob to know he's on a really different wave length. Bob's thing is conspiracies. He's sort of like Mel Gibson in Bird on a Wire except, as far as I know, Bob isn't an anti-semite.

Whenever I see Bob we always say hello to each other, like civilized folks. Just because Bob is bonkers doesn't mean you can't remember your manners, and I'm half crazy my own self, anyway. So, yesterday, Bob was on about earthquakes. Particularly, that the recent earthquake in Italy, as well as earthquakes in general, here in the Bay Area, was and are caused by bombs. As in explosives. After mentioning that the federal government had borrowed money from him (I interjected that they do that to everybody), Bob moved on to his favorite topic — that someone, somewhere, is selling fake BMW's. Bob always warns me to watch out for that. I nod, and make polite noises of affirmation and interest. I do that a lot, because Bob often mumbles.

Speaking of polite noises of interest, there's also Danny. Danny is another regular at my local Starbucks. Danny is not crazy. He's differently abled. In many respects, he's much like a six year old, in that way that six year olds will wander right into your personal space and ask to be your friend.

Danny looks somewhat like, and talks a great deal like, Buddy Hackett. The first time I met Danny, he sat down at my table and asked, "Hey, what'cha readin', man?" I told him and he replied, "That's a good book, huh!" I said yes and politely ignored the long string of saliva that suddenly trailed from his lips to the table.

Danny is clearly lonely. He'll often sit down at other people's tables without being invited. Or he'll stand uncomfortably close to you, hoping to catch your eye so he can talk. He frequently walks up to women and says, usually quite loudly, "Hi, I'm Danny! What's your name?" The women will typically answer, tight lipped and with one hand inching toward the pepper spray, probably wondering if this guy is the worst pickup artist in the universe, or what. When they do answer, Danny says, "You seem nice!" He'll then go on to compliment them on some aspect of their wardrobe, or ask them what they're doing and where they're going. Most of the women will then make their escape, stiff kneed and rigid, eyes front. If Danny catches one of them at a table, he usually knows when the conversation is over, and he has the short attention span of a six year old and wanders off quickly, anyway. Endless entertainment.

Because it was effing gorgeous, yesterday, I ambled over to the Amtrak station and watched a couple trains roll through. Then I went down to the marina. The tide was way, way out, and detritus was scattered on the mud. Driftwood, trash, an old rubber boot, presumably sans foot. A seal was barking far out in the strait, somewhere, and the sun considered being fierce, and then changed its mind.

Yesterday should have been Earth Day.
You make life interesting. Everyday is Earth Day when you wander around and observe and then share.

As for the real Earth Day...it appears to fall into the category of holidays I fail to acknowledge (intentionally or non-intentionally), such as United Nations Day and Sweetest Day (wtf IS that anyway?).