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Thursday, January 03, 2002

Beer Thieves and Wayward Seagulls

Snow allied with the Yankess long ago. It was a Northen entity at the time of the Civil War and it when it came time for the blue and the gray to fight, there's no question which side the Great White took.

I'm a bit of a Yank myself (actually, I'm from Missouri, so I have a bit of a Mason-Dixon problem). All northern-ways aside, I'm not a huge fan of snow. I liked it until I got into the news business. Much like doctors and cops, newsies don't get snow days.

I got up for work at 2:30 this morning and drove through the most recent battle of the War of Northern Agression. I ended up in the Emerald City, Greenwood, South Carolina.

Note: Five inches of snow in the South is equivalent to armageddon in Bufflao, NY.

The work was uneventful. It snowed. I talked about snow. I played in the street.

Them, something neat happened. I looked through the white mess into the sky and saw among the crows and flakes...a wayward seagull, as white as the snow. He looked damned confused. I think he might have lost his way from Charleston or something. I wanted to counsel him. I have a long history with Bird Relations and felt like I couldv'e done something to soothe his confused bird brain. But, he flew off into the white. Probably looking for the ocean. I didn't have the heart to scream after him...youre heading toward Michigan!!

After about ten hours of work, I headed back to Greenville. I stopped off for some caffeine and some Reeces Pieces. A guy decked out in camo (not one of the National Guard troops dealing with our "disaster") was buying Keystone Ice in 22 ounce cans...with what looked like change from his kid's piggy bank (his kid was buying a water gun). Camo-Man bought two cans...then discovered he had enough change for one more. He paid for it and walked back to the cooler to pick it up. I saw it coming from behind the foot-long hotdog roller-heater. He was going to take one more than he paid for.

I almost screamed out when I saw him shove the fourth beer in his bag, then I decided that if the guy is dressed in all camo and he's not a member of the active service, it might be best to leave him alone. He might be from where the bird was headed...and you know what kind of militia-types they have up there.

The sad part of this...it was a cheap and poorly executed heist. The sadder part, the sleepy-looking cashier didn't see it coming and didn't notice until I pointed it out to him. He walked in two circles, much like a dog looking for a place to go, then sighed, and looked at the floor until the guy and his kid pulled out into the snow.

I'm home now. My day finished early. Now, I'm thinking about sleeping, but feeling like I might not be able to.

If I do, I will dream sadly of the Michigan Militia shooting wayward seagulls for target practice...then drinking cheap, ill-gotten beer to celebrate their kill.

I do love the South.

I could just do without the snow and the suckers.

The seagulls can stay.


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