December 26th, 2002



I took part in a minor rescue operation yesterday. While I was looking at some toys on display in the front of Vons, I heard a fluttering sound above. I looked up and saw a hummingbird beating its wings against the high glass. I went to the manager's desk, interrupted a manager on his way to doing something else, told him a hummingbird was trapped in the front of the store. He said he'd get someone on it. Of course he first went to do something else, was dealing with cash at one of the registers.

I grabbed a roll of wrapping paper and tried to urge the bird closer to the doors. I got him to fly in the right direction, but he stayed high, above the doors. As I was working him, a Vons employee came along and took another roll of wrapping paper and we both tried to direct the little thing. Eventually the little guy landed just above the door, in some crevice where I could not see him. The employee suggested we "trap" him with a hand-held basket. I took a basket and turned it upside down and placed it over the area where the bird was hiding. The guy first tried to step on one of these baskets upside down, but it was too weak, then climbed into a regular grocery cart, held by another customer. He reached under and got the little bird in his hands and somehow managed to get out of the cart, holding the bird in both hands. He then took it outside into the middle of the parking lot.

It was good to be a part of that. A nice thing to do on Christmas.

a gift

One of my coworkers lost her brother in an auto accident several weeks ago. She took time off to arrange the funeral and grieve, and is back at work. This morning I got a Christmas card from her, with a letter enclosed that was her description of how this death changed her perception of what was important. She asked, in the letter, if I had found my way to God. She enclosed a copy of a little book called "It's Who You Know", a tract on "the most important relationship". In her letter she apologized if she offended me but said she would take that chance.

I had to give her credit for putting it out there. I am not religious, do not believe in God, and I usually appreciate when people keep their beliefs to themselves. Yet, being a person who holds other very strong beliefs, I sometimes want to risk a friendship by taking a stand. So I am not offended by her action - it wasn't personal, anyway, I am sure her letter was a mail-merge document.

I was offended when I learned that someone else in the department was praying for me so I wouldn't go to Hell.