I was almost hit today, right as I was stepping out of the Japanese noodle place. I was already reeling from an awkward, “We’re walking directly toward each other – should I move out of the way or should you,” encounter and I saw something falling right in front of me and splotch on the sidewalk in front of me. It was bird poop. Another missle hit the ground to the right of me; and, to the amusement of a woman waiting for the bus, I recoiled again.

I can think of two times that I’ve been hit in the head by bird poop. There’s nothing special to report about these incidents. It happened and I either had a tissue to dab the poop with, or I didn’t. But what are the chances of being hit? When I look at a sidewalk, I can get a general map of where birds have pooped in the last couple of weeks; and there doesn’t seem to be much of it in the grand scheme of things. It seems to me that the chances of being hit – even once in a lifetime – are slim. Twice – and a near miss – something odd is happening.

Then again, it’s probably better than being that park ranger with the world record for the number of times he’s been hit by lightning. Though, now that I think about it, I was shocked awake during a lightning storm once when I was a kid. At the time I really thought I’d been electrocuted (my hair was wet from a shower and my bed was directly under the breaker box). But maybe it was a dream.

So that’s two birds pooping on my head (and one near miss – “That could’ve been me!”) and one (maybe, kind of) lightning hit (okay probably not).

I tried to be creative yesterday with my dinner. I looked up the directions for baking a potato and cracked open the little box of smoked salmon I got from my sister’s in-laws for Christmas. I selected two potatoes – one long and skinny, the other short and fat – thinking there’d be a fighting chance that one would turn out okay. I put them in the oven, 45 minutes at 400 degrees. As they were finishing up, I put the salmon on a burner to grill. I thought I’d squeeze a little lemon juice on it while it was cooking, but I didn’t have any. I squeezed an orange wedge onto it instead, a picture of how it would taste crystalizing in my head. I finished both sides. The first side was a little burnt; that would be okay. The potatoes seemed a little hard, so I gave them some more time.

Well it was a disaster. The potatoes were cooked a little unevenly. No good at all. The salmon was not the delicate light texture that I’d expected. It was heavy and tasted like, well, fish stink.

I will be careful in the future to rely on my specialties, basic plain pasta or pancakes.

Categorized as Before