I had a very

Jul 30 2001 Kelly Norton
I had a very strange experience today. I have this friend, Tim, who works at the airport. Due to his carrying one of those badges that allows access to the tarmac, he can (on most occasions) bypass the Customs inspection area at the arrival gate for International flights. You could also say that Tim knows people; he once had a guy visit my house after I failed to return one of his GAP t-shirts. This provides an excellent opportunity to support his very strange habit, animal smuggling. It started a few years ago when he decided to bring a sea turtle back from the Caribbean, now he has illegally immigrated monkeys, spiders, aardvarks, and one baby cheetah. Most of the animals he keeps only briefly and then sells at very reasonable prices, but a select few share his apartment with his cat Chianti (including two of the monkeys, Colette and Rico).

Two weeks ago, Tim called me and told me that he had a surprise for me if I was interested. He called it his most successful conquest yet. This made me a little nervous as he had on two occasions come really close to getting busted, but I headed over to his loft to checkout his newest prize. Turns out, his trip to Madagascar had yielded the cutest pink lemur. Never heard of a pink lemur?

Neither had I. Apparently they are quite rare, and like the pink flamingo and the pink dolphin they get their color from eating shrimp. The little guy was so damn cute that I agreed to house him until Tim could find a buyer. I suspect he also had ulterior motives as Customs was starting to catch on to his disappearing act at the arrival gate. Apparently, they really do check those little white declaration forms after everyone leaves.

For two weeks, he hung out with me. I took him to work and even made a little lemur car seat. He liked the field greens from The Flying Biscuit, so our daily regiment included a trip down to midtown to pick up some dinner every night. On Friday, though, I noticed this van sitting in the parking lot at the apartment. There are only four apartments in my building, so a government issue van tends to stick out like a goose in a hen house. I called Tim immediately and he was freaking out because a similar van had taken up residence at his apartment on Thursday. He told me to lay low and he would try to get rid of Hermes, which is what I had named the little fella. On Sunday, though, I made a trip up to Perimeter mall. Fearing the feds might notice if I took my illicit pet with me, I put him in a small dog crate in the closet and left. Two hours later, I returned to a distressing scene. The dog crate was open, and it appears it was opened by human hands as there was no sign of scratching. I double checked the latch before I left and there is absolutely no way it was left ajar. I spent the rest of the afternoon scouring the house, and I found no lemur. Though I did find one other clue, and this is the really strange part. At the bottom of the stairs were two small, abnormally red, shrimp shells. This entire situation has me spooked. I am afraid to call my friend Tim, the van has disappeared, and there isn't a single sign of forced entry into my apartment.

And you know what the real kicker is? Lemurs don't eat shrimp you dumbass.

So on a more honest note, I finally managed to get Radiohead tickets for tomorrow nights show at Stone Mountain. I can't believe that they waited until the day before the concert to release more tickets. This should make a nightmare of will call, but I would hate to miss this show.