There is an old yellow bench behind work. It's where people go out to smoke. There is also a tree out there who's always sitting on the bench. I'm not sure exactly how trees (or birds, for that matter) actually work but I think that's the general idea behind what it's doing. See, the bench was there first, up against the building's back wall, and then the tree decided to grow under it from a crack in the ground. Then it grew up through it and around it and then over it. So, really, the tree is sitting on it. A photograph here would be very helpful in understanding what I mean. I don't have one so here is an illustration of a bird's eye-view of the situation.
I don't think the tree smokes.
One day, four new employees showed up. They spent their entire day out back on the yellow bench hanging out with the tree. They didn't do any, you know, actual work but no one gave them a hard time for it. I think probably because they were very young.
That's them in the blurry photo. Lying down. While at work. In a tree. The last time I lied down at work in a tree I got in all sorts of trouble. To be fair, it was like my seventh warning or so. I was told there is only so much lying down in trees they will tolerate. The amount is apparently unquantifiable since I can't get an actual number from anyone despite all my inquiries. All I get are unhelpful responses.
"Jon. This isn't a double standard. They don't actually work here. Those are eggs, you understand? That's a bird's nest you're looking at. Why are we even having this conversation? How old are you? Also, please review our substance abuse policy."
Okay. So they're birds. I'm really very sorry I don't have a doctorate in biology. Maybe you should add that to the job requirements for next time.
They grow up so fast.
Even though time at work feels like an eternity, cause of relativity or some other bad idea from Albert Einstein, the inventor of science, the time from egg to actual thing that resembles a living creature, and not just a particularly smooth rock, felt to be extremely short. One day I decided, eggs or not, I was going to be giving them a piece of my mind. The angry, repressed piece. I practised my angry face in front of the mirror for like an hour before heading out back only to be greeted by this:
My hour of practice had gone to waste, but this was somehow mitigated by my new, sudden understanding of approximately 50% of the thing about birds and bees.
Babies had been made.
Tiny, ugly, newborn babies, just like human ones. But I realize that I'm supposed to say that they are very cute regardless of my true feelings on the matter. I've learned that much from social media. So, aren't they adorable?
But they did, in fact, get adorable at some point, unlike human babies.
This was about 27 microseconds after the previous photo. Einstein or something. I don't know what they were doing with the plastic bag. Maybe they had been shopping.
There was a mother bird involved in all this and, I presume, a father bird at some point. I have mentioned neither so far because I hadn't thought of it until now. It's not interesting anyway, but I'll throw in a line about the mom just for the sake of completion.
There was a mother bird involved in all this.
Alright, alright, so she was pretty important. She spent most of her time bringing food while simultaneously dodging smoking employees. You would always see her out there at a safe distance, hovering around the perimeter of whatever area the bird deemed to be a respectful personal space. At times she would yell at people if they got too close to the bird babies. I imagine it was quite obscene. I tried to memorize some of her bird profanity in case I ever get in an argument with a seagull again this week.
At this point in time, about 37 seconds after being born, the birds are just about grown up and ready to fly or, probably, hover in place since I assume learning to fly happens in incremental steps. Better to take it slow. Baby steps. Baby bird steps. Though it has occurred to me that maybe birds are really just excellent jumpers and the flying thing is an illusion. I'll have to consult the work of Dr. Einstein, inventor of science.
Though they can't even hover yet, they are already very good at modelling. I have been photographing them since they were born, 54 seconds ago, so I suppose they've had their whole entire lives to practise. I feel I would maybe be good at a thing if I had practised it since I was born. It's really too bad I wasn't handed a banjo or something immediately upon vacating the womb. I have to remember, if I ever have a baby, to take a banjo with me to the delivery room.
Great pose, baby bird.
I hope I can remember to bring four tiny banjos to work next week.