augury doggerel

Sunday, December 23, 2001


Other than to gather food, I go to the stores just four or five times a year, mainly to take care of birthdays and Christmas. Yesterday, it was for a birthday and Christmas come together. I bought music, sheet and recorded.

After leaving one store, I noticed that the old flower shop next door has been deflowered. It is now something called Pink Shop and has nothing in the windows but posters of naked women.

Around the corner, unconnected with the Pink Shop except in spirit, two young women stood in kitschy Santa suits of the sort you might expect to see only in a Playboy cartoon: black stilettos sunk in the crust of snow on the sidewalk, sheer black stockings stretching up forever legs, short red skirts, tight bodices, Santa hats, nothing else. They were handing out candies courtesy of the restaurant there.

Just ten paces down the walk were two children, maybe eight and ten years old and apparently Romanian. They knelt in the snow � kneeling is the only begging position in this country -- and held out a cup for change. When no one was walking by, they fed bits of bread to a pigeon that disregarded custom and stood on orange feet.


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