Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Robinson Crusoe On Mars

Adam West talks to an obviously distressed monkey dressed in a tiny space suit as a drawing of a spaceship zooms past a drawing of the planet Mars in this science fiction take on the Daniel Defoe story. Some guy that's not Adam West crash lands on Mars and often opens up the helmet on his visor for some reason because that seems like a sensible thing to do on the red planet, then he tries to start a martian rock fire with the valuable oxygen in his breathing tank. When he's not dodging fireballs, he sucks the oxygen right out of the tank with his lips and eats space food from a tube. Then Adam West's monkey raids the food tubes, and that's one of the many reasons why you shouldn't go into outer space with a monkey. They won't keep their nimble, greedy little fingers off your food tubes.

Oops, someone accidentally removed the very scientific clip I had of NASA sending chimps into space with an absurd one of people flinging pigeons around aboard what I can only assume is the Vomit Comet. Having once given a joyless joy-ride to a captive pigeon I had stowed in a plastic beer cooler, I can tell you from experience that this is a really terrible idea. You'd be surprised how much crap comes out of a pigeon on even the briefest automobile trips. Unlike a dog, pigeons don't seem to enjoy rides in the car, they aren't potty trained, they can't stick their heads (or ass, for that matter) out the window, and I can't really recommend it.

OK, you're probably wondering why I drove a pigeon around in a cooler. Years ago, when my now-adult children were still in elementary school, Mrs. Deathrage was having a minor meltdown because an injured pigeon was beneath her car and refused to move. Considering all the pigeon rescue training I've had, which is none, she coerced me into saving this poor bird, whose wing seemed to be bloody, scraped, and impaired. Using a broom and the only container I had available, I gently shooed the troubled creature into a large, plastic beer cooler. Mrs. Deathrage insisted I call Animal Control to handle the situation. After many calls to many animal professionals, no one would take this bird. Maybe the situation has now changed, but there didn't seem to be many injured pigeon resources available. I haven't checked lately. Anyway, I finally found an animal rescue sanctuary 30 minutes away by car. They did not do pickups.

Mrs. Deathrage wanted the bird to be as comfortable as possible, so she placed a small bowl of water and a couple of pieces of sliced white bread in the cooler because it seemed to have a hungry, thirsty look on its face and it's going on a half-hour car ride. Satisfied with this arrangement, the pigeon and I embarked on our journey, with the cooler resting in the back seat of my car. Like I mentioned before, pigeons seem to dislike car rides, and it flapped around frantically inside the cooler. As I was on the highway in traffic, I couldn't check on its safety. I felt assured it was still alive because I could hear it attempting to take flight within the cooler. It very well could have been drowning for all I knew, and I didn't have a miniature pigeon life preserver available. I hoped for the best.

After an eternity of the sound of ceaseless wing-flapping coming from the cooler in the backseat where I pictured its dumb little head submerged in the bowl of water, I arrived at the sanctuary. I'm not sure how long pigeons can hold their breath under water, but I'm assuming its not a half-hour. Again, I'm no pigeon expert. With some trepidation, I looked inside the cooler. Within the cooler sat the pigeon. It was soaking wet, covered in pigeon crap and soggy bread, but seemingly no worse for wear than it was when it was chilling under my wife's car. I took the cooler and its disgusting inhabitant into the building and walked up to the reception desk, and informed them why I was there. The receptionist said, "Bring your pigeon and follow me to one of the exam rooms". I said, "I don't own a pigeon".

I waited for like ever in the exam room, and finally a man dressed as a park ranger came in. He said, "Are you the guy with the pigeon?", making it seem like I hang out with pigeons all the damn time. Not really knowing how to respond to such a question, I said, "I guess". I pointed to the cooler. Not missing a beat, throwing common sense and caution to the wind, disregarding any violent and potentially life-threatening situations that could occur, and certainly not wearing any sort of protective gloves, he fearlessly reached into the cooler and grabbed the filthy pigeon. Flipping it over and over, pulling its wings open to get a good look at its pigeony anatomy, and giving it a nearly everything but a prostate exam, the pigeon remained calm and sedate, as if it's manhandled by strangers posing as park rangers every damn day. The alleged park ranger said, "Thanks", and left with the pigeon, leaving me in the exam room with a bread and crap-filled cooler. I sat there stunned for a moment hoping I wasn't going to be presented with a bill, then I snuck out of the building.

I went back to the penthouse, hoping I wasn't followed by bill collectors who specialize in emergency services for pigeons. By now, the kids were home from school. As we sat around the dining room table, I started to tell my harrowing tale. I said, "So I took a pigeon for a ride in the car...", and one of the kids said, "The one in the bucket?"

Confused, I said, "Wait, what? You knew about an injured pigeon, you kept it in a bucket, and you didn't tell anyone?". Instantly, they all started to cry, exclaiming, "WE THOUGHT YOU WOULD KILL IT!", because apparently amongst my children I have a reputation for murdering pigeons, which is something I don't ever remembering doing before. If that's something I've done in the past during some drunken, blackout, murderous pigeon rampage, how did they know? I'm pretty sure I would have kept that information close to the vest. Anyhow, last time I checked, pigeon murderers don't escort their victims around town out of the goodness of their heart prior to their eventual demise. I'm not really sure, since I don't have an actual human heart, I've never murdered a pigeon, and that seems like a waste of gas. Regardless, I was always under the impression that potential pigeon murderers drove windowless vans, and not Volkswagen Jettas.

While I realize I'm a super villain and all-around awful person, I would never harm an animal. And now the word is out in the animal world that I'm willing to be a pigeon taxi service driving injured foul around to doctor's appointments for free. Swell.

Anyway, Robinson Crusoe On Mars has some pretty cool desert location shots that look a little bit like what Mars looks like, and there isn't very much Adam West in it.

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