Pasadena is home to the world-famous Rose Parade, the Renoirs and Van Goghs of the Norton Simon Museum, and some of the loudest, most obnoxious wild green parrots ever to announce a new day to residents not yet ready to face it.
Sometimes the parrots perch in a tree near my house when I’m in late-morning REM sleep and start screeching. (If you’d like a sample of their skull-splitting morning howdy, search for “Pasadena parrots” on YouTube.) Sometimes they fly by in a group, screaming their heads off on their way to some other neighborhood — clever strategy for disturbing as many sleeping people as possible.
No one is sure where they came from. Some trace the cacophonous horde to a 1959 pet shop fire. Others say that’s an urban legend. Me, I suspect a plot by the neighboring city of Glendale, which surely must be jealous of all the attention we get from Bob Eubanks. (Paranoid? Perhaps. But, really, how can you not suspect evil genius of a town whose paper carries a weekly grammar column?)