Invariably, there's always something that stops me from the year-end-cleaning of the research files. Some items are not pertinent, some were never pertinent, and most all are impertinent.
I make notes in the margins of newspaper articles and columns by other commentators. One such piece was about exotic animals that were adopted by families who wanted a different kind of pet. How about a peacock dwelling in the backyard of a home someplace in Ohio? I bet the La Cañada City Hall honchos would be thrilled to ship off a few of these foul animals from our side streets and utility easements.
Or a flock of turtles (turtles don't flock, I know, but please, it's holiday time) who dozed in the horse pastures in Idaho. Not one of these odd clippings merit keeping. But I kept them anyway. One day my gracious and encouraging editor might suggest a really bizarre column about strange pets.