Monday, February 27, 2012


This is where Rik Martino, the Birdman of Silver Lake, now lives.  He used to feed up to 200 pigeons a day, buying big bags of seed at Baller Hardware, and scooping it out with a trowel. He used to be someone's caretaker, then shared an apartment, then - then what, I don't know, but this is where he's ended up.  He came from Italy to try his luck at an acting career 30+ years ago (stage name, Franco Massimo).  There is, indeed, a You Tube video of him, which is the one mentioned on the posters - I imagined that this video was about his conviction that the local authorities have poisoned the pigeons - which, of course, they may well have done - he wasn't universally popular, especially up on Hyperion, where I believe he used to live.  Maybe that's why there are fewer pigeons around?  A couple of years ago they got into our roof (coo, coo, coo-coo), and the nadir was when a hawk dropped a freshly filleted pigeon heart into our back yard - they did, admittedly, provide tempting hawk-targets.  He also pushes a shopping cart around with a huge sign - PLEASE SLOW DOWN SQUIRRELS ARE GETTING KILLED.  And until I did a bit of googling, I drove past him every day - like all those cars lined up behind me - without knowing any of this, other than his anti-animal-control protests...


  1. I used to live in the same duplex as Rik. The owner of our duplex was a wonderful old man who wasn't married, and whose friends took care of him. He hired Rik as a caretaker, and Rik cut my landlord off from all his friends, barely fed my landlord, and when I called Protective Services, Rik convinced them he was my landlord's boyfriend (he wasn't). I love animals, but Rik is a rotten person.

  2. Hmmm - interesting. I haven't seen him around in a long whiles ...