Friday, August 28, 2009

More Duck, Please

Nycticorax nycticorax

I happened upon a scene in Audubon Park. A man was feeding bread to the ducks, geese and fish. It wasn't much different than anyone else doing the same, except for the fellow pictured here. He's a Black-Crowned Night Heron. My wife calls it an evil bird, but more on that in a moment.

What caught my attention was the attention this bird was giving to the bread on the water. The man told me the bird was waiting to catch a fish. The fish were swimming about eating the bread left by the ducks. Sure enough, after a minute, the bird lunged forward, snatched up a fish. I thought the event was interesting enough that I brought the family to the park on the following day.

We traversed the park in search of the bird, and finally found him not too far off from where I'd seen him last. Unfortunately, the geese were exceedingly obnoxious and I couldn't get the bird to repeat the trick. The geese soon ran him off and we left as well. We didn't see where the bird had flown.

Oh well, nature never repeats a good trick on its own. Sometimes it's funnier.

Some hundred yards down, we found a mother duck and two ducklings swimming about. The kids were happy enough to feed the babies and they made such sweet "Peep Peep" noises. Just another duck feeding?

Another family came down to the waters edge; a mother and her twin daughters. The mother sees the babies and says to her toddler girls "Look, girls! She's got twins. Just like you." And soon we were all feeding the happy family.

Without warning, the heron leaped out of its hiding place in the elephant ears at the waters edge. The bird snatched up one of the ducklings from the surface of the water and quickly flew off; little baby duck crying out "Peep peep peep..." into the distance.

A look of horror fell upon the mother of two as she hustled her girls away from the scene. My wife and children were outraged yelling at the fleeing predator while mama duck cried out for her missing duckling.

I fell out laughing. The irony of the situation had hit me quickly:
1) We came to see a predator bird. Well, we found it. It performed above expectations.
2) Cold smelly slimy fish are okay for birds to eat. Cute duckies are not. We came to the park hoping to say "Cool! The bird ate a fish," when what we got was "Holy Crap! That bird ate a baby duck!"
3) Never create an emotional bond between your twin daughters and vulnerable baby duckies in the wild. That, and always hustle your children away from the strange man who laughs hysterically when baby ducks are being eaten.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Traffic Horn Blues

I think car horns should be tuned to shift chords through a standard 12 bar blues chord sequence. Then use something like Bluetooth pairing so that traffic would have a more gritty bluesy feel to it.

I'm stuck in this traffic,"
"Ain't goin' no where,"
"My wife's home in bed,"
"And Lord I wish I was there!"
(harmonica) *WHAAAA-WA-WA-WHAAAA*
"I got those Traffic Horn Blues...."
(blues music)
"Those dirty down horny Traffic Horn Blues..."

Thursday, August 20, 2009

One Wifey, Two Wifey, Three Wifey, Jail

Because 2 Is An Option?

I'm a firm believer in the sanctity of marriage. Then again, I have a wonderful wife. That kind of makes it easy.

Beyond all the "To have and to hold" vows, I have to admit that there is another reason I won't ever move on to "Wifey 2": I really don't need any more women in my life telling me to take out the trash.

She's a talented computer professional. The other night she came home late with the excuse that something had crashed and she had to get it up and running before she could come home.

"Did you try nagging it until it worked?" You'd better smile when you say that, and I did.

"No. My computer programs don't need nagging. They do what I tell them to do, when I tell them to do it, and how I tell them to do it. Unlike other things in my life."

She's a dream. I couldn't ever leave her. Love you, Babe!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Just a tease...

Freedom! Oh, wait...

Every now and then I like to go to the window and dream of running in the fields. I dream of the sun warming me as I lay out enjoying a cool breeze. I see kites flying overhead. I hear the ice shifting in the chest as it melts and I'm reminded to reach in and grab a cold beer. Oh! And sausages grilling over coals. The fat dripping out and catching fire just long enough to give the sausages a good smoky flavor. My toes are scrunching the grass. My wife is sitting in the shade of an umbrella. The kids are running around with the dogs. The sausages are almost done and I haven't even made a dent in my supply of beer. The radio is playing Pink Floyd and I reach over to turn up the music...

Then the damn phone rings and I'm back in the real world.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Nothing to see here, move along.

Good Community Relations

If I were driving down Airline Highway, er um, Airline Drive with an unsecured load of crap in the back of my truck, I'd want to be as pleasant to the local constabulary as possible. However, with the sticks and such flying out the back of this guys littermobile, I'm sure he'll get to say "Hi Officer" face to face.

Monday, August 03, 2009

"Git ya Gramma a nutter pack-a-smokes. Will ya dawlin?"

Oh The Stupidity

I like to think this guy in traffic has hooked up his hooka to his exhaust system. He's got Bob Marley cranked up in there and he's jammin'. When that light turns green, all I want him to do is pull over and get that damned thing fixed.

Either that, or I'm looking at the first nicotine-fueled-injected SUV in history.