“A pigeon eating a banana” said Carrie.
Thus began my day of “Going out to take the photos where I’d read the original brief and gone “Awwww, fuck *off*, seriously?””
I wasn’t convinced that pigeons would eat a real banana, so I went to LicketySplit, the lovely little retro sweet shop in the middle of town and bought a bag of foam bananas instead.
Exactly why I thought that pigeons would prefer to eat extruded chemical foam over organic matter, I have no idea.
I was under a lot of pressure, right?
So, armed with a bread roll from Greggs, I found a couple of pigeons on the High Street, just outside my old office, in fact, and piled the bananas up on the pavement. Then I started flicking crumbs towards them to try and entice the birds to pose next to the sweeties.
It was a little dark in the corner I’d chosen, so I rigged up an external flash on a tripod. And clearly, had my camera on a tripod too.
So, you know, to an independent observer, it would look like a pretty in-depth, professional sort of set-up.
And that’s becase I’m a pretty professional, in-depth kinda guy.
What I hadn’t factored in, though, was that by doing this RIGHT OUTSIDE WHERE I USED TO WORK, I might bump into ex-colleagues. And indeed, so I did.
“What are you doing?”
And I was so flustered, I said:
“I’m taking pigeons of pictures…I’m, ummmm, I mean, pictures of pigeons. Yeah….”
And she looked at me.
And I said
“I sound a bit mental, don’t I?”
And she looked again.
And I tried to explain, about Louis, and a wheelchair, and how by taking photos of pigeons I was helping buy a kid a wheelchair. And then I tried to take my phone out and show her a picture of Louis, so she could go “Awww, that’s sweet, he looks lovely” and we’d all be on an even keel again.
But instead what happened was that I gibbered at her for a bit, fiddled with my phone while she spoke, failed to find the photo and then smiled awkwardly as she walked back to her office.
Thanks, Carrie. Thanks a bunch.