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Monday, June 02, 2008

Surround Sounds: Outtakes (or Sequel)

(See previous post for context.)

While neither of these is exclusive to morning (or evening - when sometimes the birds return), they do often join the cacophony of morning sounds. Though I just heard the latter right now: 5 p.m.

Some mornings, though not all, the chirps of the menagerie - birds outside and catties in - and the ding and roar of the train, are joined by the unnaturally loud voices of a few neighbors whom I only assume sleep in the train station parking garage or its cheery walkway. These are neighbors not prone to rational conversations, but then who is? Sometimes they sing. Often they shout. They like certain words I don't often say myself. Often they repeat themselves. They, too, wake with the sun.

One other common morning sound is the distinct clatter of little wheels and metal frames bumping along asphalt, methodically rolling down the block outside my long bank of high windows. The sound frightens and fascinates Buddy. More than once its particular clangs and rhythm seem to have been the trigger for an early morning grand mal seizure (bringing its own horrific sounds of wheezing, thumping, and my distressed voice, "it's okay, baby"). Sometimes he'll run and hide from it, sometimes he'll jump into the window to see, then jump back down to get away.

Its sound is always the same. You have to hear it, echoing in between the midrise loft buildings down a quiet dawn street. But its source alternates, unexpectedly. Some mornings I'll look out and down on a big grocery chain employee, working a long row of connected metal carts through the neighborhood and back to their corporate home. Most mornings I look down on a single cart, or maybe a pair, pushed by a single or pair of neighbors, full of cans and bottles or blankets and personal items, moving from nowhere to nowhere (or from park bench to dumpster?), rattling up the street at morning's first light.

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