Saturday, November 15, 2008

Il pleut un ami mange du pain.

Today it is Saturday and it is raining. Days like these actually make me feel better. On a sunny day you will always end up inside, at least for a brief period of time. During this time you feel like you should be outside. It's like eating salad at a pizza place. On overcast days you can take a walk or go to a book store or watch a movie and never feel like you are missing out.

Walking back from the library I came across a squirrel eating bread. It wasn't nearly as interesting as finding a bread eating squirrel but it was still fun to run across. Most animals react to a camera as if it is eating their soul. He, however, was very polite.

In one of the buildings on campus I saw a framed portrait of a squirrel sneezing. This was really exciting for me because 1) it's incredibly cute, 2) it is very rare to see this happen, 3) to be able to take a picture mid-sneeze is a Herculean feat, and 4) someone else shares my affinity for the little sneezes. I would go as far to say that this picture alone is worth at least $450. At first I thought to compare it to taking a picture of lighting. But I realized that not only do squirrel sneezes occur (approximately) in a shorter period of time (Faster than lighting!), but one is also more aware of lighting as it approaches.

I spent a few minutes looking for pictures and videos of sneezing squirrels but was unable to track down any. Your best bet is to go to a park or any sort of squirrel Rainbow Gathering and wait patiently. Someone told me that if you have to sneeze you should just think of elephants and then you won't have to sneeze anymore. This only seems to work 50% of the time.
While searching for a picture of a sneezing squirrel I learned that the female squirrel takes two weeks to ovulate. In this time the gentleman squirrel chases the lady squirrel in a way that kind of looks like they are playing a game of tag. This sounds exhausting but also very cute.

I find the mist, during days like this, to be really interesting. It almost feels as if nothing exists past the grey blur of the horizon. It reminds me of this game for the Sega Dreamcast, Shenmue II. In the DC version the processors weren't able to load textures that were beyond a certain point on the in-game map. It caused the same kind of misty horizon effect.

Okay, one more thing. I was thinking about how people say that something is like "Selling ice to eskimos". To me it would seem really easy to sell ice to eskimos. Who else likes ice more? If eskimos came into the liquor store over the summer and wanted to buy something, 9 times out of 10, it would be ice.

Watch out for jellyfish (they can be dangerous),

Today's Playlist:
Light Rain (or songs that are playing through the tape deck in the dashboard of an old boxy car while driving down a winding country road and it has just rained heavily but now it is just lightly raining...and all of this is a good thing)

1. Islands - **Secret Song** (Return To The Sea)
2. Bright Eyes - I watched you taking off (a collection of songs...)
3. Feist - The Park (Reminder)
4. The Decemberists - As I Rise (Her Majesty)
5. Devendra Banhart - Will Is My Friend (Rejoicing In The Hands)
6. Broken Social Scene Pres. Kevin Drew - Gang Bang Suicide (Spirit If...)
7. Modest Mouse - Styrofoam Boots/It's All Nice on Ice, Alright (Lonesome Crowded West)
8. All Time Quarterback - untitled (All Time Quarterback)
9. Bob Dylan - Don't Think Twice, It's Alright (The Freewheelin'...)
10. Rilo Kiley - ripchord (More Adventurous)

*sneeze pics and playlist recommendations would be appreciated*

The squirrel let me get really close and I took this video of him. Music playing is 'Chick A Boom Boom Boom' by Mocean Worker. I may have also thrown in some duck footage for good measure.


Andrew (F.E.U.) Lippman said...

Neil, awesome entry, you make the mundane day to day thoughts much less mundane, something I wish I could achieve on a regular basis but alas, you win.

Selina said...

That squirrel is quite adorable! I am surprised you could get that close. Hopefully it didn't have rabies.

Have you ever been stung by a jellyfish?? The only way to make it stop hurting is to have a hot person walking by urinate on you. It's true- I saw it on FRIENDS.

PS- The word verification is "orbulf" which I think is a funny word!

Anonymous said...

Hey Neil! Truly appreciate your admiration of Squirrels...they really are one of nature's finest: sooooo cute, clever and industrious.
Just wish you could've posted the pic you spoke of re: squirrel in mid-sneeze (any chance of seeing it soon?).
To Selina, squirrels and wildlife/animals really don't have rampant rabies; it is rare and extremely visible. One would most likely not be calmly enjoying a munch so serenely if so afflicted.
Also must get heavily bit by such to even begin any type of transmission possibility.
So suffice it to say, Neil, you are safe, and so cool to kindly enjoy nature.
Keep on keepin' on!