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Thursday, December 19, 2013

A Three Alarm Night

Three car alarms are going off on the street. They don't blend and are not playing well together. Maybe it is the work of merry holiday pranksters, or malicious elves. Maybe some clumsy neighbor staggering home drunk, ricocheted off the cars, oops! oops! oops! 

Or, maybe it is an earthquake, the beginning of the end --- what we Californians on the fault line call: The Big One.

The dogs find it inspiring, and have joined in the holiday carol. 
Diamond, the pit-bull, goes, AROOO!
Little Guy is delivering his uniquely irritating, staccato, relentless, sanity-eroding yip.
Wally the poodle-mutt is on cow bell. 

I hope the dogs and I are not about to plummet, yipping and barking, to the molten center of the earth -- with a ghastly, three- siren accompaniment.

It never occurred to me that the end could have such a crappy sound track. 

One car alarm, maybe. The approaching semi-reassuring wail of an ambulance, a few on- lookers shrieking, maybe someone crying... But a cacophony of discordant alarms is way too... well, alarming.

Grim mid-December thoughts as we skim past the 25th anniversary of my friend Lisa Endig's death. Hers was quiet. Didn't have anything to do with alarms, except the ones going off between my ears. Early morning on a living room couch on a quiet Santa Monica street. Maybe some traffic sounds outside, maybe birds. All I really recall is the lengthening silence between her breaths.

Ah! The sirens have stopped. We've been spared. 

In the quiet that the sirens leave behind, the dogs return to licking their butts and watching me for signs of snack-happenings, and I re-notice the sounds of rain. 

I'd forgotten the rain! Even forgot all about the double rainbow I saw earlier on my drive home. But now, I'm glad to remember, glad The Big One has been postponed, and glad for the chance to wish us all, in these last few weeks of the year, a pleasant sound track, stable ground, and many continuing breaths, in and out.

lots of love,


Suzanne Morrone said...

Beautiful Amy. A reminder to be grateful bad things aren't happening, though at any time they could.

judema said...

I didn't know you lost a friend like that. Well, then, here's to remembering. And thank God it wasn't the big one. Especially in the rain.

Karen McDermott said...


Unknown said...

I hate car alarms. When a reasonable person hears a car alarm sound off at 3am, does said reasonable person react with "Curses, some rapscallion is purloining a vehicle of conveyance. Summon the constabulary!"?


Said reasonable person reacts with "Shut the fuck up you piece of shit car!"