Thursday, May 7, 2009

Or, Mine THESE Birds

In case mining your own life just isn't giving you enough stuff to spin into stories, try "What-iffing" about this piece that was in the New York Times yesterday and which, among other things, proves (yet again) that life is stranger than fiction.

"A federal grand jury in Los Angeles indicted two California men on charges related to the smuggling of songbirds into the United States, 14 of which prosecutors said were concealed on the leg of one man during a flight from Vietnam. Wildlife smuggling is a common problem in the Los Angeles airports. The men, Duc Le and Sony Dong, were arrested last month after an investigation by the Fish and Wildlife Service. Investigators said that they had discovered Mr. Dong with 14 live birds strapped to his legs...and that a subsequent search of his home yielded 51 additional songbirds. A search of Mr. Le’s home found an outdoor aviary with around 50 Asian songbirds, prosecutors said. The birds are in quarantine." (Italics mine.)

I truly wish you could see the accompanying photo of Mr. Dong's legs with the birds attached to his calves. It looks a little like a photo of the legs of a guy in a kilt, wearing those tasseled socks that kilt-wearers favor. Only the tassels are...birds.

I can't help but wonder, exactly how did Mr. Mr. Dong attach them? That is not one bit clear. And did he tie those twisty things you use to keep bread fresh or to close your trash bags around the birds' little beaks to keep them from singing? (Or maybe he didn't worry about that, figuring the birds wouldn't really feel like singing, under the circumstances.)

In any case, you might begin with the scene in which Le and Dong come up with the idea:

"Hey, I know! Let's tie a bunch of birds to our legs and smuggle them into America!"

"Friend, you are a genius!"

And take it from there...

First plot point: how does it end up that Mr. Dong is the only one with birds tied to his legs? I mean, really. Is that fair?

1 comment:

Lee Wind said...

Um, I hope he wore some serious chain mail underwear!


what a great story - and it certainly is stranger than fiction!