As you heard here earlier this month, Gregory Pike, the renowned San Francisco street performer who has trained a rat to stand atop a cat standing atop a dog, has departed our fair city following a conviction and fine on a charge of "public obstruction"
for drawing large crowds at Union Square. We caught up with Pike this morning in a telephone interview from Lake Tahoe, where his animal companions -- Booger the dog, Kitty the cat, and Mousey the rat -- are apparently charming folks in the Golden State's hinterlands.
Never short on showmanship, Pike is traveling to Sturgis, S.D.
, on a motorized bicycle pulling a trailer packed with his furry friends. "I just got them out of the trailer and there's already a big crowd," he told us. (To see our video of the mammalian stack in action, click here
.) Add the name Booger to the pantheon of American travelers that includes Huck Finn and Dean Moriarty: Pike and the gang are On the Road again.
For us sedentary types, meanwhile, there's some good news. Like Gen. Douglas MacArthur
Pike told us this morning that he shall return. He said there's a film
being shot this fall in San Francisco for which he has signed on as an
animal trainer. In three months, he said, he'll return to our city.
"I'm going to be back," he said.
Good news for most of us. But the San Francisco Police Department shouldn't get its hopes up for bringing this prince among outlaws into line. As for his $236 public-obstruction fine, Pike said, "I'm still not paying that."
Note: Stay tuned to The Snitch for updates on Pike's cross-country adventures. He has promised to send us photos and offer periodic updates on the journey.