But the birds are beside the point. (Or are they? Perhaps not.) See, about halfway through the film, I notice the shoulders of the man sitting directly in front of me. They are large. Exceedingly hairy (gray hair). They are round, belonging as they do to a heavyset gentleman. But they are not wearing anything.
The man is shirtless.
I immediately lost all interest in the movie. (My interest was already waning, to be fair.) I became focused entirely on this furry topless fella sitting just inches from me. He had the bald pate/scraggly ponytail of an aging hippie. He was apparently feeling rather warm (although, it wasn't warm. We were in a movie theater in the middle of the Arizona summer, where people pay good money to be frozen solid for a couple of pleasant hours. I was wearing a sweatshirt. It was zipped up to my neck.) Yet, here was this guy, apparently comfortable in his own nudie skin. But of course, the real, burning question was: WAS HE WEARING ANY PANTS?
So I tried to surreptitiously lean forward and peer over into the next row. I didn't need to be super stealthy, because by this time, we've got 8 kids who are tired of looking at animals eat each other and/or starve to death because of global warming, and they are growing restless.
But I can't see any pants! I can see hairy knees, and above that, the beginnings of some hairy thighs, but I can't see any more. So I quick use some hand gestures (not obscene ones) and put my sister on the case. Her eyes grow large as she surveys the scene, but she can't see either. Now we are getting sort of nervous he's some style of pervy. Is very frustrating. Jen is about to go refill our giant tub of popcorn (naked guy doesn't know all the Dots are gone and nobody is going to eat popcorn without the Dots, unless we put some of that fake cheese powder on it), as a ploy to ogle the naked guy from the front (I know, is perilous mission), when the movie ends, and the lights come up.
Jen and I are both holding our breath. We are transfixed. Some of our children may have already left via the side exit, but we don't notice.
Naked man doesn't immediately rise from his seat. First, he reaches into the next chair, where he's been storing his tie-dyed tank top (the sort with two foot, waist deep arm holes, perfect for showing off his copious gray armpit hair) and slips it over his head. I hold my breath.
He is wearing shorts.
They are short and flesh-colored, but they are shorts.
There is no question.
Naked guy isn't naked.
And that is my whole entire story.
I know, it leaves you with more questions than answers.*
But isn't that what good literature is all about?
*Like: Why take off the tank top? Is only a scrap of fabric. Is not like you take it off and think, whew! much better.
*Or, like: Didn't you just move, Beeswax? why are you telling me this story instead of unpacking your office? And aren't you out of cereal? Shouldn't you go to the grocery store?