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King City
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September 27, 2023

Funny Papers Again Column | Monday Countdown: 6 Hrs. 39 Min. To Deadline

The past couple of weeks were filled with One Thing or Another and now I find myself in a predicament of words, one thousand of them to be exact. This happens to all of us once in a while, and whether it is This and That or Here and There, they surely interrupt normal schedules and possibly wreak havoc on a writer’s psyche.

In my case, Another took a little more time than I had hoped for, and as for One Thing, well it got downright demanding and there went the writing time allotment. The upshot of all this is that it is now 5:21 a.m. Monday morning and I am without anything meaningful to write about and deadline is noon.

But this has not held me back before, so let us proceed with the unmeaningful.

I attended college and university late in life (received an AS degree at 48 years old and BA degree at 51 years old) and I figure I’ve done all the research I need for the remainder of my days, so now I just ask questions and let others do the work. Here are a few questions that I will let you readers do the research on, if indeed you are at all interested in the answers and information provided by experts to these important aspects of existence.

Question: Where do birds go to die? There seems to be a huge imbalance between evidence of human passings and that of avians that kick the bucket, or whatever it is birds kick when they die. In every town in America that I have been in, and with a dozen or more multi-state road trips through half of the states in the union that is a lot of towns, there is always a cemetery or two if not inside the city limits then very close by.

Greenfield is a good example of the two-cemetery town, one inside the city limits and one out. If it is a current operating cemetery and or mausoleum there will be additions to the graves, vaults or crypts at a pace relative to the nearby population, and this is visual evidence of end of life with humans. But the birds must do it differently because when riding my bike here in KC or up in Greenfield, I rarely see a dead bird or evidence of a dead bird, not even in or near the cemeteries.

What is the most common cause of bird death? Any bird? On the street where I reside here in King City there are a fair number of trees in sight, including not just this street but the streets on both sides and the trees of the city park and golf course. Depending upon the time of year there are three common birds in these trees: sparrows, crows and what I will call ring-neck doves because I don’t know the common usage, and occasionally an invading hawk.

In the nearly decade I have lived here I have seen only two dead birds anywhere in the vicinity of those trees. And there are times when the sky and the trees are abundant with the loud, raucous caws of a murder of crows with the responding tweets and chirps of sparrows and the coos of  doves creating a cacophony of noise, hundreds of birds and not one carcass anywhere.

I’ve heard tales of African elephants having secret burial places, at least two old black and white movies had that theme, so maybe that is what Heckle and Jeckle did also, made their way to the secret crow Valhalla. This would be a good science project for some high school student headed to university where who-really-cares research is often the norm; possibly a reader will alert the school to this.

Question: At what time of life does the musical term “oldies” become irrelevant to a generation? When does a new generation come along? I was born during the Truman administration and so am categorized as a Baby Boomer; I don’t know how many follow me: Yuppies and Gen X, Y and Z maybe? But I digress. The music of my era was late ’50s rock and roll, then the ’60s to mid-’70s stuff. My point is there is a hippopotamus-sized radio station in this area that claims to be an oldies station, but all they play is the crap that came after the good stuff. (NOTE: Probable scant facts regarding this question; see Opinion).

Question: Is it possible I am mistaken that King City’s main length of asphalt is misnamed? I sit on the planning commission and have done so for a little over a year now and many facts and figures about the city are found in our agendas, as one may expect. Street names usually reflect the influences of a town during its building phases.

So, who was it way back when who came up with Broadway Street? And why? Let us see what we are accustomed to when naming asphalt strips, no matter the length: street, avenue, circle, way, boulevard, path, expressway and a couple more I can’t think of. In the early days of America, the widest strip of earth cleared for transport through a town was most often called The Broad Way and as languages do this term was shortened, as on Manhattan Island, to just plain Broadway.

So why did someone sometime in the early days of Hog Town decide upon the redundant? Broad Street Street? Finding facts on this question would take a dedicated researcher and result in a waste of time, so we’ll let it go for now.

The countdown to deadline allows me another 2 hrs. 43 min.; I think I have given you readers a very informative lesson in how one may write a thousand words of drivel in just a short time and make it read as if they haven’t just pulled the literary wool over your eyes.

Take care. Peace.

Steve Wilson
King City and Greenfield columnist Steve Wilson may be reached at [email protected].

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