The Last Robin of Spring

The summery weather was broken this weekend by a few spells of nice clean-smelling rain. The clouds were largely gone by Tuesday, but we were left with a distinct autumn crispness in the air. While the summer weather regained a bit of ground today, it would be difficult to deny some fall influences in the light.


I walked out onto an unfamiliar pier this evening. A man was there fishing, pulling a basket up out of the water. He nodded hello as I walk up behind him, “How are you?”

“Good, How about you?”

“Pretty good.”

I was careful not to step on the two crabs laying on the upside down on the pavement behind him. They’re legs and claws were twitching around like they were struggling to flip themselves. I nodded at the crabs, “It looks like you got something.”

“No. Those are too small. I’m throwing them back.”

I walked a comfortable distance down the pier and looked out at the water for a minute, taking some photos.

When I turned my head back in the fisherman’s direction, he was dropping one of the crabs back in the water. (Splash!) He turned back around and reached for the second crab. But instead of tossing this one into the water, he jerked his arm suddenly as he was picking it up, and smashed the crab hard against the pier. (Crunch!)


  • The light dims quickly enough that when I take my first photo, the camera sets the automatic shutter speed to .5 seconds, a couple of minutes later the next photo’s shutter speed is .6 seconds, and the third is a full second.
  • I make an attempt to be especially chipper each time the waitress swings by, though she’s undoubtedly forgotten whatever blunt undesirable inflection I felt my voice may have had during our initial conversation.
  • From the next table, I overhear, “Yes, I believe in evolution. But I think that aliens helped human evolution along at some point.” I can’t help listening more closely for a minute while he tries to explain his theory. It becomes clear that he’s repeating something second-hand and doesn’t remember his source’s supporting arguments very clearly.