Pigeons & Jerry Springer

I often think about my twenty years in Chicago. One of my favourite neighborhoods that I lived in was Wicker Park. For eleven years, I lived in Wicker Park, Bucktown, and East Village, all neighborhoods adjacent to each other. For much of that time, I lived in the heart of Wicker Park on Milwaukee Avenue, one of my favourite neighborhoods in the country. On 10 October 2007, I wrote this; and sometimes, it’s the smallest of moments that you will always remember.

“Every morning, I walk on the west side of Milwaukee Ave on my lonely trek to the El to meet mankind. And every morning, like clockwork, the pigeons congregate near the big intersection (North/Milwaukee/Damen) feeding off the bread left on the sidewalk by a kind soul. For the longest time, the pigeons would fly away as I trespassed into their space; these days, they just part the sidewalk giving me an easy pass in and out of their space. We know each other now; and that familiarity has built a bond of some sorts. Across the street, their benefactor sits on a milk crate watching his little friends. A slight smile creeps into the corner of his mouth. He looks a bit like Jerry Springer with the round Lennon-Gandhi specs and wavy grey hair. I wonder who he is? What does he do? What is he thinking? What would compel a man to sit on the sidewalk day-after-day at 6:45 AM to feed the pigeons? Possibly those are answers for another day. I just walk on by, happy with the routine and the dependability of the morning moment.”

Go Adventure. Go Travel. Go Live.

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