Home Freak of the Week Gull rejects Livingston's "mystic babble" lives like other scavenging shore birds

Gull rejects Livingston's "mystic babble" lives like other scavenging shore birds

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TINY TOWN, USA –– Jonathan Livingston Seagull -- one of numerous attempts to translate the thoughts of shore birds into English -- was published almost 40 years ago.

America's municipal water supplies were poisoned with LSD at the time so naturally it became a national bestseller.

Richard Bach, the author, apparently spoke with sea gulls. He is not to be confused with Joe Mitchell, author of Joe Gould's Secret, a superior text printed in The New Yorker around the same era and reprinted in Up in the Old Hotel. Joe Gould, a.k.a. "Professor Seagull," actually spoke seagullese. 

In a lucky but not at all transcendent incident, the 39th offspring of J.L. Seagull met with our shore bird unit for an interview recently. The gull, who calls himself "Triple-X-9er," reflected on his legacy and not without a few squawks about Mr. Bach.

Here is a partial translation of what he had to say. The reporter's questions have been removed for ease of reading:

"Fock you! Fock you!  Fock you and you and you! (Triple-X-9er was cursing other gulls who came nearby) ... And fock Richard Bach too! Gimme a french fry, gimme another french fry. Gimme some bread. More. More!

See? This is what a focking seagull does, ok? We eat shit fock and flock and lead miserable lives. No one of us escapes. J.L. Livingston got into some bad clams back in the day and filled that Bach guy up with a lot of mystic babble.

What focking seagull doesn't know how to fly? Tell me. You're a focking seagull, you fly. You don't fly, we peck you to death and eat you. Or the wharf rats get you. Fock you! Fock you! (another gull attempts to get in on the action) Gimme another french fry.

Growing up I caught a lot of crap from the other gulls about J.L. He's a focking laughingstock. The fock did he get out of it? A bucket of bait and some freakin stale bread. Meanwhile the little Jew bahstid who wrote the book gets a million dollars. Did that sonofabitch get to Nirvana? Bet your ass he did. Meanwhile J.L. flew into a prop plane outta La Guardia, but you don't read about that shit, do you?

I come up here following the Santaro garbage trucks ... I been to Fresh Kills, Seneca Falls, I seen a lotta good dumps. But no dump is better than this place (Tiny Town's Alewife Park) ... Fock you! Fock you! (another gull came by) ... You wouldn't believe the shit some of these people feed us. Yestidday I gotta chunk of pannini -- with the cheese and spinach still in it! This morning a guy pukes up his breakfast! It was all intact! A focking Greek omelette, rye toast and home fries. Me and a coupla the boys settled down on that shit and was there a hellzapoppin' fight over who got the feta!

"Boids of a feta," I joked. A coupla them laughed and I made my move and got the better of that omelette lemme tell you. 

(Other gulls appeared) Fock you! Fock you Smitty, Fock you Rex! I'm squawkin heah!  Gimme another fry. More! How about that sammich? Whaddya got there? Oh yeh. I love sliced turkey breast - HEY! Fock you! Fock you and you and you! ...."

The interview came to an abrupt end as several formidable gulls landed near us and Triple-X-9er got into a fiendish squabble over the remains of our reporter's sandwich. 

–– C. Penbroke Handy.

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Last Updated on Friday, 21 August 2009 12:14  

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