Of Geese and Boots and The Front Page

There is no grand message here – except maybe, similar to stop and smell the roses, stop and experience the geese of life.

I’ve always taken my children with me to clients… if they wanted to go.
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In 1996, I was consulting for Sebastian Haircare in Woodland Hills – the Pyramid building on De Soto.

They had been purchased by Wella – a move that some would say destroyed the brand but that’s another story.

Sebastian had this cool rain forest inside their facility. Lush greenery and some fish tanks. I couldn’t find a picture of it – though I didn’t spend much time looking.

On this day, Tuesday, December 17, 1996 (I only know because the date on the picture), I’d taken my 2nd child, Jessica with me. Jess often accompanied me to clients – setting up with a book or something to draw. I’m certain, on this visit, she spent much of her time at Sebastian in their rain forest, pretending she was one of the creatures that lived there.

On our way home, back to Chatsworth, we passed Pierce College (aka: Moo U). On one of the fields, I saw hundreds of Canadian Geese. Jess saw them as well.

Our friends who know Jess fully realize that there was NO WAY I was going to drive past a field of Canadian Geese without making a stop for her. Jess was/is animal crazy. In fact, she spent more time being an animal of one sort of another than she did being a little girl. I’ll write more about this later – some hilarious stories. This is NOT an exaggeration. We used to discuss it in terms of whether this was becoming a psychosis of some sort.

I let Jess out and she walked across the field, wading into the middle of the flock. I didn’t join her, knowing that my presence would be more likely to frighten them.

As I watched Jess enjoy her feathered friends, a man with a camera and large telephoto lens came up next to me. He asked if he could take some pictures of her. He said the colors and moment was perfect.  I agreed and gave him permission.

He went on to explain that he was a photographer for the Daily News.

After taking several photos he said, “It wouldn’t surprise me if these make the paper.”

As it turned out, we received the Daily News and the Times back in those days. The next morning, early  – because I’m always up early – I walked out to get the paper.

The Daily News was on the driveway. It was folded in half, with the lower-fold facing up. But there was no mistaking the boots. Jess was always wearing boots. I ran back inside and woke Jess and my wife up to show them the paper. I was very excited!

Over the course of the day several friends called us. The consensus was that, of course, Jess was on the front-page of the newspaper with a bunch of geese.


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