Saturday, April 29, 2006

Pic of Reggie at Machado Lake / go to

Update and Correction about Reggie The Alligator: Will He/She Become Legend

Since I wrote the article below on" I am in a Tizzy about Reggie The Alligator" I found out certain statement made in the article are not necessarily correct. For one, I stated that Reggie was seen sunbathing at the golf course next to Machado Lake. It turns out that a worker at the site likely saw an indentation in the ground that came from a trap that authorities had set for Reggie and interpreted that to mean that Reggie had made the impression. I also said that Reggie was out of hibernation. Experts doubt this statement and think from what I have read that he is probably still in hibernation.

This is all good news as I was concerned that if Reggie was freely roaming around a golf course he could do harm to someone especially if that someone harassed Reggie or tired to grab him. anyway it put my mind at ease for the moment. It will be interesting to see what happens next. Here is to the best of all outcomes for Reggie whatever that might happen to be. I know one thing for sure if Reggie never gets caught, he will become a legend in her/his own time and generations of kids and others will pass the story on as Reggie becomes part of the folklore at and beyond Machado Lake.

Sharon Raphael

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Monday, April 24, 2006

I am in a Tizzy about Reggie the Alligator

Yes, it is true. I am worried that Reggie, the alligator who was placed by his ex cop keeper many months ago in Machado Lake ( located next to a oil processing plant) in Harbor City, California may be captured by Steve Irwin or some other croc or alligator type rustler this spring. Reggie has already emerged from hibernation and has been seen sunning himself at odd hours on a golf course located next to the lake. It has been nice to fantasize about a wild creature being free and able to sustain himself in surroundings abundant with wildlife and and lots of under and near underwater spaces where an alligator can retreat from human observation. It is also true that I am aware there is the possibility; however small, that Reggie could be a danger to humans, children and/or small animals humans hold dear. It is amazing how one's imagination can be so captured by the figure of a young alligator hiding itself in a foreign land so to speak (After all California is not a place that naturally has this kind of water dependent reptile species). By the way, Reggie does not appear to harm the ducks and geese and other wild birds that float along the lake or hang on or near the lake all day because it appears alligators only eat at night.

It is not clear what happens at night though. And I shudder to think of it but like to fantasize that Reggie has plenty to eat, dark bobs of things that live deep in the lake like snakes and shellfish and other sorts of uncute creatures that do not waddle on the shore during the day. I know this is probably sheer fantasy and that it is wrong to think these other creatures deserve to die by a strange creature who is not supposed to be there in the first place upsetting nature's balance. Woe is me. I prefer to think of Reggie as a noble lone wolf facing the constantly impending nets and traps of the approaching inhumanity of humanity coming to get him. In spite of the polluted city and the negative image that Harbor City tends to have compared to some of the upscale communities that surround it, Machado Lake is a beautiful place, inundated with lily pads and undulating water reflecting the changing color of the sky in myriad ways.

Reggie, you know, actually has his own blog titled rather inaptly Monster at Machado Lake, a site where Reggie speaks for himself about his situation and keeps us abreast of recent Reggie news. Whoever writes for him (his mouthpiece) is very good at getting the reader to identify with Reggie as a free spirit we need to listen to and protect. I wonder who this person is? There is also a commercial aspect to the Reggie blog site where tee shirts and mugs with pictures of an alligator are sold and other items that appeal to Reggie watchers are sold. But the commercial aspect is not overwhelming and there is a logic to the whole pitch about turning the park and lake where Reggie resides into a tourist attraction leaving everything in place as it is in what has been a spot fairly neglected by almost everybody save for what used to be just the hungry for work immigrants and transients who spend their days around the park and lake where Reggie now lives ( there is an official place in the park where mostly Mexican immigrants wait for employers to pick them up for temporary jobs). Now since Reggie is there, young mothers also bring their children to look out over the lake to see if they can spot Reggie there. They are kept at a "safe distance" from the lake. Sign and barriers constructed in the park warn sightsee-ers and other not to go beyond a certain point. Interestingly, the signs do not say Warning, Alligator Lives Here. I think there is a sign now that says something about if you see an alligator let the park ranger know immediately. I think it is a new sign.

I tend to like being in the fantasy world most of the time, hoping against hope, that Reggie will always live in the lake. It would be nice to believe the powers that be will see the wisdom in turning the park into a place for alligator lovers and those who have heard of the Reggie lore come to get a glimpse of him (or could it be a her) basking unafraid floating with his/her head proudly raised outside the water for all to see. But deep in my mind not my heart I know probably this cannot be. For now I prefer to fantasize a little while longer. Long Live Reggie. May He/She Reign.

Sharon Raphael