One of the things I love about my friend Kitty is her eye for detail. When we travel together, her photos are filled with details – a cat sunning in a rustic doorway, a child with a dripping cone – that I didn’t even see. Because of her, I’m building a nice collection of flying pigs.
Flying pigs, or “Pigasus” as we call them, is a symbol that supporters of the James Randi Educational Foundation (JREF) have adopted. A few years ago, Kitty and I were wandering around a lovely garden center near me, and I mentioned that I was looking for some Pigasus statues or ornaments. “Nothing plastic, maybe ones that look more hand-crafted” I explained.
“Like that?” asked Kitty, pointing at the ground.
There are our feet was a small pig, complete with a turn-up snout and wings, on the ground nestled between two schefflera. It was heavy cast iron, and perfect.
A full year later, on another visit, Kitty and I were driving through a funky part of town in search of the perfect sushi restaurant, when I mentioned how much I enjoyed my little pig, and what a fun memory I had about how she discovered it.
“Keep looking, you have a good eye for things.”
“Like that?” she asked, pointing to the side of the road.
We were passing an antique store, one that I had passed dozens of times. The store frequently had a line of brightly colored sculptures lined up on the sidewalk, fwhere pink flamingo yard art must be born. I had never noticed the row of flying pigs.
There you go. I now had two Pigasus in my collection.
Some months later, Kitty and I were embarking on a cruise with a group of skeptical friends, coordinated by our friend Jeff. The evening before we sailed, he had put together an optional visit to a Fort Lauderdale restaurant called Mai-Kai, a silly place where we ate pseudo-Polynesian food, watched fire dancing and girls wearing coconut shells, and indulged (too much) in flaming drinks. Going to places like that with 20-30 of your closest friends can be a lot of fun. Over dessert I was telling my table mates about Kitty’s great sleuthing ability, and how she had been able to find the flying pigs every time we were together. A few minutes later, she walked by my table and said:
“There is a flying pig in the gift shop.”
And indeed there was.
There are other occasions. Kitty has made a knitted pig, and a framed Scherenschnitte Pigasus using copies of an article about James Randi as the background. She’s a gifted artist and craftsman, and my go-to expert for all things related to art, crafts, color, and design, and a fantastic travel companion.
- Revisiting “When Pigs Fly” (jodiebethinhercrystalroom.com)
- More Flying Pigs (twodifferentgirls.com)
- 2012 Pigasus Awards are Here! (skepticalteacher.wordpress.com)
- JREF News & Updates for April 2012 (randi.org)