Posts Tagged ‘ BREAKING NEWS ’



From the files of : THE HUMAN RACE by BOOTS LeBARON

 A LION STUDIES WILDLIFE AT STARBUCKS’ WATERING HOLE.  Clean shaven and reeking of Eternity, the old lion sat alone licking his chops and sipping coffee at Starbucks in the early morning.  As he scribbled thoughts on a notepad he studied a parade of creatures waiting in line for fresh-brewed concoctions.

     For weeks he had perched hungrily watching a variety of scrumptious  smorsels slurping dark liquid on the stage of life.  It was a jungle better than Broadway.  Where else can one observe and even chat with such an entertaining cast of characters — asking questions that only a scraggly old beast like me who’s focused on his prey could get away with.

     Take a look:IMG_1973

An unemployed gorilla (actor) with a debilitating hangover sipping decaf delight.

A gregarious old rooster whose wealth, despite his vanity, attracts a handful of clucking young chickies.

A beaky young vulture who’s always dressed in a blue suit and tie.  Where’s he going?  To work at the mortuary.

An award-winning body surfer who’d rather ride the waves than be the aerospace engineer that pays for his surfing expeditions.

A belligerent homeless hyena who grabs the discarded newspapers, then exits Starbucks to find his own solitude.

A soft-spoken well-groomed spotted leopard who religiously reads the sports pages, turns out to be a racist.

An antelope ex-convict who calls himself “The Poet” and survive

eight years doing hard time in three state zoos.

A powerful rhino (Los Angeles County deputy district attorney) who has successfully prosecuted and won more than 100 murderer cases, proudly sending three men to Death Row.

A striking gazelle (blonde female banker) who’s tired of being hit on.

A raccoon (physicist) who reached middle age before he told his mother, who raised him as a single parent, of his childhood crime.  He hated liver.  Whenever she served it for dinner, he’d pocket it.       An eagle (entrepreneur from Indiana) who almost 20 years ago maxed out a credit card to start a pharmaceutical head hunter business that now has offices nationwide.

An ostrich (buxom young female, bellybutton exposed), is poured into a clinging blouse, mini skirt, with shapely legs stretching into spiked shoes.    She’s looking for work.

An army officer dressed in camouflage fatigues and combat boots who has fought his share of wars in the Middle East.

A couple of friendly pandas (English-speaking Taiwanese) who came to America 30 years ago.  They diligently read the Chinese Daily News printed in their native language and discuss the editorials in their native Mandarin.

A chimpanzee (ironworker) who blows about an ongoing love affair he’s having with the woman who happens to be the mother of his children.

A porcupine (homeless young woman) sits on the bricks outside Starbucks.  Her face is dirty.  Her features are classic.

A friendly and squirrely orangutan in her mid-80s who blesses every person she comes in contact with and claims one night she actually spoke to God.

A Hollywood gorilla (stuntman) who had injured his back when the car he was driving in a film crashed.  Despite the pain, he works through it.

What a parade fascinating creatures.

What a world.

What a life.

What a collection of morsels.

Too bad I’ve already had breakfast.

Boots LeBaron







Not too long ago,

I was walking down the street

when I heard the

 rustling of leaves

coming from high in

a maple tree.

When I looked up, there was

Francis Arichibald O’Leary with

that waggish face beaming down

at me. He was clinging to a spindly

branch that barely supported

his portly Leprechaun frame.

“Top of the mornin’, chappy!” he

called, tipping his topper.

“And the rest of the day to yerself,”

I said after a moment of hesitation.

For up to that point in my life,

I had been a reasonably logical guy

able to distinguish fantasy from reality.

At an early age, I came to believe that

elves, mermaids, gremlins, pixies,

brownies, even gnomes, were all

figments of our imagination,

conjured up to make human existence

more entertaining — dramatic.

Yet, there clung Francis with a

cluster of shamrocks sticking out of

his hatband, winking down at me

with a set of impish green eyes

magnified by bifocals.

Since I had met my share of leprechauns,

as sure as St. Patrick drove all the

snakes from Ireland, I’d never met one

who was more whimsical than Francis whose

coattail was caught in the branches.

“Before you forsake me,” he pleaded, “would

you be up to doin’ a kind deed?”

I shot him a skeptical glance.

“Wouldn’t you agree:  it’d be unmerciful

to leave a body stuck up in a tree on

such a fine kite-flying day?” he asked

“How’d you get up there?” I said.

“Would you believe I was tryin’ to get

closer to heaven?” he snorted.

“If I help you down, will

you give me an interview?”

“Yer pullin’ me leg,” he howled.

“Maybe you’re right,” I said.   As I  began to

walk away,” he hollered at my back:

“Unless yer interested in talkin’ to the

descendent of Ireland’s King Timothy O’Leary.”

He pressed a thumb to his chest.  “This is me!”

The minute I helped him down, he pushed

out his double chin and explained with a

cockeyed grin, “Timothy O’Leary was not

really a king.  He was more like the

chief of a clan in County Cork.  But King

Leary did exist.  And his same blood

trickles through my veins and those of

my sons, Shawn, Kevin and Bryan.

They are all sturdy lads.”

“And where on the Emerald Isle do you

hail from?” I asked.

“Sad to say, I’ve never been to

Ireland.  My father, Timothy raised

 nine of us on an estate in Cambridge,

Mass. where he was a groundskeeper.”

“Are you truly a leprechaun?” I asked.

“Not only am I the largest leprechaun in the world,

I’m the only one with an engineering degree; one

who works with rainbows, pots of gold, taxes,

and has an adorable wife named Allie who teaches

college calculus. Think of me as an overgrown elf with

supernatural powers. That’s me!”

That spiel was the beginning of a friendship

that lasted many years.

Before we parted, I asked, using tax lingo,

“Don’t I get three promissory wishes, Francis?”

“Brace yourself,” he said taking a deep breath.

“May the road rise up to meet ya. There’s

one… May the wind be always at yer back…

And here’s me favorite: May you be in heaven

ten minutes before the devil knows yer dead!”

With that, Francis vanished in a puff of smoke.”

He was such a happy, unpredictable soul.

Passing away on Valentine’s Day

was so befitting the one time U.S. Marine,

aerospace physicist who dabbled in programs

 ranging from the  Atlas ICBM propulsion

system, analysing military ground support systems,

to kibitzing beach city politicians who for years

tolerated his magnificent blarney.

Right now, I’ll wager he’s gettin’ ready

to celebrate St. Patrick’s day,

dancing a jig in some cloud in the sky

far above the maple tree. That

performance, spiced with a touch

of pure O’Learyism will generate

enough razzmatazz to cause old

St. Peter to open wide his gates.

And leave the many friends he left

behind with heartfelt memories.

Toodleoo, old pal.

In Irish, that means good-bye.


— Boots LeBaron —


Love from Boots, JoAnne, and family.

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