I was happily enjoying a day at Jones Beach on Saturday, laying in the sand, half under an umbrella, half out, listening to the crashing waves and letting each one lull me into a state of relaxation. And while the careless other beach goers shuffled sand into my face and on my towel as they walked by, annoying conversations wafted into my ear space, and too many kids were afoot, I didn’t let any of it get me down. And then, shit happened.
In other words, a seagull flying over head let one go. From where I lay, I could see it as if in slow motion: the Hershey squirt rolling around in the air and morphing into an abstract splash of art before it landed in a warm splat on my leg. NOOOOOOO, I cried. Not again.
According to the World of Feng Shui and other Web sites (yes, I googled bird poop, why me?), bird shit is supposed to be an omen of good luck:
“Many people believe [a bird shitting on you] to be a major sign of wealth coming from heaven. Hence, although, it is really yucky and a major inconvenience, when something like this happens to you, take comfort in the fact that this is described as good luck being just around the corner!”If this true, I ought to be really freaking lucky. Because this is not the first time I have been crop dusted by an avian bomb squad. No readers, I have been crapped on by birds in several countries, on two separate continents. Once, in my early 20s, it happened as I strolled around the river Seine in Paris. That time, my travelling companions told me I would be lucky in love. Harrumph.
Another time, it happened as I ate lunch at a café terrace in Barcelona. That time, my work colleagues told me to wash my hair quick to ward off cytomegalovirus.
So forgive me if, as I ran into the ocean on Saturday to rinse the fortuitous feces off of my person, I wasn’t feeling particularly comforted by this omen. Further reading suggested that this phenomenon is considered lucky because of the “what are the chances” aspect of being in the right place at the right time for the shit storm. I beg to differ. At Jones Beach, where masses of seagulls swoop around to steal scraps of people’s food, like a scene from the movie The Birds, I don’t think the chances of me being a prime target were so slim.
Looking at World of Feng Shui site, other good luck omens include the following: when you see a shooting star (yay!), when a butterfly flies into your home (cool!), when it rains and the sun is shining, producing a rainbow (oh my!). In fact, among the 18 omens listed, only one was seriously gross. Mine.
So stay tuned to see if I win the lottery, get my dream house, publish my first novel, or have Daniel Day Lewis tell me I’m the love of his life. Until then, I may take to walking the streets of New York City with a parasol.