Sunday, May 15, 2011

Garden Gladiator

 Early this morning when Dawn was still dressed in her lavender nightie, I heard a "flinking" sound. Flink. Flink. My subconscious folded the noise back into a dream omelette.  The flinks got louder. Then it dawned on me that someone was throwing something at my window.

 I hauled my achin' bacon downstairs to the kitchen, instinctively reaching around for a coffee cup. Scratching my head, I wondered if this was a happy dreamwalk, or...FLINK!! It hit the window hard! "What ...?"
 A robin bobbed up and down outside on a branch and glared in the window. He looked pissed. And then he hurled himself right at the glass! FLINK!!! Again, and again, and again.

 With open mouth, I noticed a small figurine on the inside window ledge. An antique porcelain blackbird used for venting hot pies. Maybe that bird outside is a mother who is trying to rescue her poor chick. Awww... Her baby has fallen into the evil clutches of humans who bake chirrens into pies.

"I'm coming my darling!"
"I'll rescue you!" FLINK!! WAM!!
 [Or] perhaps the blackbird appears to be a threat? Nah, it's too cute.

I remember when I was four years old my mother sang, "Four and twenty blackbirds baked in a pie..." Sick. As I remember, the birds' relatives hired hit men, rather "hit birds" who came back and pecked off her nose. Which goes to show yah.

I was a wide-eyed child thereafter. Waiting. Watching. Expecting any moment for those bad boy birds to come calling. and so after all these years he's come for me. FLINK!! WAM!!

After a couple weeks of this hell-bent, and now beak-bent bird-brain smack down, I realized that he was fighting his reflection. I overheard the following:

"Hey you! What are you doin' here?"
"You talkin' to me? What are you doing here?"
"I own this yard!"
"Oh, yeah? I own this yard!"
"You're a stupid looking bird."
"You're the stupid one!"
"I will fight you!"
"I will fight you!"
"I'm not kidding!"
"Me neither!"
Swoop! FLINK!! WAM!!
"Owww.. That dude has a hard head."
"What? You still here?"
And so on.

"We have met the enemy. And he is us."––Walt Kelly


June said...

Now I am worries about the bird... did he give in and admit defeat? I hope so.
Now I have a good excuse for not cleaning our windows to a shiny reflective surface... The dust can stay a while longer.

By the way, I think they used to put living birds under a pie crust cover so that they flew out as a pie was cut, just for effect.

steven said...

hey richard! birds and windows have so many echoes in my memory (and in their own heads)! i remember my mum phoning me once to tell me that a robin had just smoked into her dining room window leaving a dusty putline of its entire body shaped much like the form in the bottom picture of this post. steven

Julia Kelly said...

Better a bird than a moose- we have friends whose brother had a moose challenge itself in their large picture window- that did not end well.

Richard Jesse Watson said...

June, I was also worried about the bird, but it seemed to get over the "challenger"finally after about two weeks. I was on the verge of covering the window. Live birds flying out of a pie would be pretty cool. I wonder if they used other animals as well. Like cats.

Steven, I did go look and sure enough there were dusty spread-eagle(make that spread-robin) prints all over the window.

No way Julia! That could get serious in a hurry. I mean yowzer! A moose? I thought I had problems.

ruthie said...

I always detested that song when i was a child, such cruelty. Poor wee bird fighting an endless battle, did he go away with his tail beetween his legs in the end ;-) We are settling in slowly but surely into this wonderfully quiet haven, thank you, though i seem to rather have run out of steam, getting to old to be doing this lol.

Mary Jane said...

Who knew robins could be so darned persistent? I hope he/she didn't hurt itself. That ceramic looks like baby bird looking for a meal! Maybe it was a momma bird after all?

Your exhibition of paintings in Vancouver this past week was wonderful to see. So much detail and care! So glad I dropped in to see the show. Wow!

Faith Pray said...

Hilarious! That is one persistent bird. The piebird, that is. His patient, open beak, still hoping for something to eat. Glad to see you back in blogland!

Kat_RN said...

Just plain silly. Now you know why the term "bird brain" is not a compliment.
Thanks for the grin.

Richard Jesse Watson said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Richard Jesse Watson said...

Ruthie, the bird never really backed down, but he got busy with hunting worms then trying to spruce up his image.

Mary Jane, it sure was nice to see you in Vancouver. Thanks for coming by. And thanks for the fun show and tell with your iPad. Awesome!

Hi Faithy. That bird is so patient. She has been waiting for something to eat since before I was born. Although I seem to remember my mom sticking in a pie and boiling blackberry pie syrup shooting out of its mouth. Yikes.

Thanks Kat. Yes, I can see why birds are not CEOs or bank presidents. Although come to think of the mess we are all in, maybe there are some bird brains running the banks.

Kjersten said...

I have a vivid memory from childhood of discovering a dead robin by our front window who had presumably been participating in just such antics at the time of its death. I felt so sad for the bird and mad at our glass for being clean. Glad your bird didn't fare a similar fate.

Richard Jesse Watson said...


That is very sad about your childhood robin. I will have a moment of silence................................................................................................................... I remember various animals that our cat, Tinkerbell used to leave on our door mat. My robing is still our singing up a storm. But I think he now flies in circles due to a bent rudder, or bent directional finder.

karen said...

what a wacky robin! i am glad they are not all so possessed. we would never get any sleep after four am and the worm population would be out of control!

i like the happy ending of the bird not battering itself to death. whew! i was worried for awhile! this is a strange and funny story and i love your "voice".

i haven't been here for awhile and delight in the new blog header. to quote iggy pop on a dangermouse sparklehorse album: it's kinda freaky kinda funky, i'm a mix of god and monkey!

Richard Jesse Watson said...

Karen, that makes me laugh. For sure we are part God, part monkey. I'm not sure of the ratio...

Mary said...

Last spring a robin hurled itself against my windows for days. I found out that male robbins often mistake their reflection for competition. In this case the bird actually began bleeding. Putting newsprint over the windows for several days stopped him. And of course my house was "in the news"--Mary

Half-heard in the Stillness said...

'Dawn dressed in her lavender nightie..' you had me hooked from the first sentence!
Wow those Robin's are so very feisty aren't they?