Friday, October 17, 2008

Bird Brains

Someone asked me about the bird next door since I commented on it the other day.

I don't know exactly what type of bird it is, but since it talks, I just went with myna. I haven't stuck my head over the back fence to get a good look at it. And I don't like people enough to actually make friends with the neighbors. I like peace. And silence. Something I don't get much of thanks to the furballs, but I'm used to them--and they nap for about 22 hours a day anyway.

All I really know about the bird is what I hear. When I get home from work I hear it out in its backyard, usually screaming like a little kid. The first time I heard that, I wondered if I should investigate and/or call the cops on a child abuser. It didn't take me long to realize it was a bird. Most of the time it only screams like that when the other neighbor's dog is barking uncontrollably at it.

Then there's what is quickly becoming my most hated word: "Mama!" I don't know how you mothers handle the repeated use of that word. But from what I've seen in the grocery store, that word, once repeated 30 times in a row, is usually answered with an irate "WHAT??!" shouted loudly enough to be heard from across the store. Now imagine it coming from a bird and no one responding to it....

During the summer I only heard it during the short stretches I was outside moving the sprinkler around the backyard trying to save my crabgrass and a few blades of fescue from the ravages of dehydration. But about three weeks ago the temperatures took a dip and I can now keep the windows open during the day, which has led to a more intense exposure to the bird. I now hear hours worth of wolf whistles (was it raised at a construction site?), all kinds of birdie cawing sounds, the inevitable refrains of "Mama!" and--as of last weekend--the bungled choruses of "Somewhere Over the Rainbow."

It could be worse, I guess--it could talk like a sailor. Which would probably make the parents of the homeschooled kids down the street raise enough ruckus to get it removed. Hmmm, maybe I should give the bird a few English lessons. Starting with George Carlin's Seven Dirty Words.... Hmmmm.... *taps chin thoughtfully*

**UPDATE 10/20** The bird learned a new word--"Bye!" which was repeated unto eternity this weekend. Too bad it never left.

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