Catalogue | Souvenirs | E-mail | Links
«another perfect chunk | Front | a tiny request... »

December 29, 2003

There were many visitors at the bronx zoo today. It was a perfect day for families to make the trip, and so they did: the nuclear ones, the critical mass ones, the strangely radioactive clusters of sorts, packs, herds, swarms, bunches.
My favorite people today might have been the concerned single mothers, some of their children taught to glow with a shy curiosity, there were whispered questions like: “how many primate species were extinct since 1901, mom?” and the answers, mostly also whispered: “I think we should keep going honey, it looks like this gentleman is trying to take some pictures.” (meaning:”scary, scary, perv-alert!!!”)…

All I really wanted, was to be nearby when one of the animals happened to have that famous glimpse of awareness: “oh, my God, I am the last of my kind and yet I am trapped in a little, ridiculously painted terrarium with some dangerously psychotic bunch and nobody understands my language, or even my name, which is certainly not ‘happy’.”
We all have these moments sometimes, don’t we, so why shouldn’t a walrus have them, or a “white-faced saki” or an “australian palm-cockatoo”. (Imagine being one of the most intelligent species on the planet and be trapped in a box labeled “palm-cockatoo”… scary thought, isn’t it?)

I was that guy today, unshaven, quiet, alone, armed with a small camera, who sat in front of a bird cage for hours and stared at a near extinct, australian palm cockatoo until the animal calmed down, stopped screaming and biting (a plastic-tree), began to behave as if I were somehow interesting, positioned itself on one of the faux tree trunks and waved with one leg whenever i moved my right hand. Some imagined communication between two very odd species.
(This is when a boy walked up to me and asked me if I had that sort of camera that could ‘penetrate glass’, just when his father fired another supercharged flash on the other side of the room, setting off what sounded like “new york car alarm for four toucans.” I explained to the boy that the best way to “penetrate glass”, was to turn off the flash on the camera… and to wait… cockatoo was still waving.)

And I did not really bother with “tiger mountain” btw. and “kongo” was just a really short stop… children pounding against the glass, using both fists, about 15 grownups watching… three of them gorillas…
A perfect day to visit the zoo.
“did you get them, did you get them?” a lady asked me when she saw me holding the camera in the direction of a swarm of birds…
“it all takes time… not yet…” she did not actually wait for the answer…
It was a perfect day to visit the zoo and without fail, most of the screaming and shouting visitors seemed to be packed into a building simply called: “monkeys.”


you must have a look at my favourite zoo in copenhagen.... love it.
aber zoos machen auch irgendwie traurig....

Posted by: a single mother on December 30, 2003 05:37 AM

oh what an amazing entry...

(most australian people communicate the same way as the cockatoos *waves leg*)


Posted by: shauna on December 30, 2003 07:56 AM

Yes, what an amazing entry.

Posted by: Donna on December 31, 2003 01:56 PM

VERY cool entry. I admire people who haven't lost the ancient art of sitting still and admiring a tiny little piece of this amazing bubble called earth, surrounding us, embracing us.. Congratulations to the luxurious day you could spend there!

Posted by: Manuela on January 3, 2004 09:59 PM
Post a comment

Email Address:



Remember info?