When I was nineteen, I had a friend who was going to Costa Rica for a month to study biology. I mentioned it to my father; something along the lines of “isn’t that cool?” My father replied, “yes, do you want to go?” Somehow, that really did translate into me going too.
So, a very short time later, I was studying biology in Costa Rica. To be more accurate, I was studying attractive people and weed in Costa Rica. I mentioned I was nineteen, right? The small group I was with would spend the week in Cartago working at the university. The weekends were spent travelling around the country, visiting rainforests and beaches, hiking, swimming and, like I said before, studying attractive people and weed. (Nineteen, can’t stress that enough.)
One weekend was spent in Monteverde, where we hiked through the Cloud Forest Reserve. It was breath taking. It was unlike anything I had ever seen before. It was damp. We had been hiking forever, up a mountain, across hanging bridges, through numerous puddles. We had slowed for a moment to look at a plant when the sound of what must have been an entire metropolis of bees hit my ear.
Let me pause for a moment to say this: I DO NOT LIKE BEES. So I lightly shoved our eighty-year-old biology instructor out of my way and set off running down the path. I mean running, too, and running is not really my thing. Once I had gotten an absurd amount of distance between myself and my group, I finally stopped to breathe and cease panicking.
It was at that moment a bird flew into my head.
I was stunned, and not just because it was a sizable bird and it hurt my nose. What are the chances of being hit by a low flying bird? How could no one be around to see that? Furthermore, are you kidding me?
Jumping ahead nine years to my honeymoon in Killarney, Ireland. After arriving in Dublin, we took a bus through the city to the train station. Having missed our original train because United is the best, we had a few minutes to spare while waiting on the next available train. I had just spent the past two days of my life living in an airplane or port and I needed coffee. We were standing in line, when
A PIGEON FLEW INTO MY HEAD!
What am I doing wrong? How have I offended the bird community? I was baffled. Would this just keep happening to me? Am I just a bird person now?
One more jump in time, three months after the Ireland trip. I was standing across the bedroom from Six Foot Converted Jew, holding a plastic coat hanger. I threw it at him, because handing it to him wouldn’t have been funny. It sailed right past him, over his shoulder, hit the closet door behind him and hung itself on the doorknob behind a bra and a necktie. We stood slack-jawed and stupid for a good five minutes after that one.
I finally had my answer. All of the strange occurrences were lining up. I am not the enemy to birds. I am not a jinx. I am just the lamest sorcerer.