Tuesday 13 September 2011

Just A Callous Bastard

We all like to think of ourselves as nice, caring, thoughtful people who hope to leave a positive lasting impression when we leave this world. For the most part, that is how I view myself, but sometimes I am not so sure about myself.

I have been working for the past few days in a building that is under construction. It is nearing completion, but there is quite a ways to go yet. I suspect that once they actually close all of the building in it will be quite comfortable, but for now the wind blows through at will and I believe that it is cooler inside than out.  This openness allows all sorts of undesirable things into the building. There are plumbers, electricians, welders, roofers, carpenters, drywallers, painters, a handful of retired postal workers and a Magpie.

Surprisingly, all but the magpie are not only welcome, but necessary for the timely completion of this building. The retired postal workers are employed to do mind numbingly boring, repetitive tasks to which they are eminently qualified. While working at these tasks the magpie came up as a subject of conversation. We were all of the opinion that through some navigation error it flew through one of the open doors and was having some trouble to get back out to the pale blue. Al and Ken were talking about ways to entice it to leave. They thought that perhaps putting bread crumbs near the entrance the bird would hopefully find its way out. I guess like some kind of feathered Hansel and Gretel following a tasty trail. One of them mentioned some woman that will feed the magpies near her home raw meat. That’s nice isn’t it? Train this tiny dinosaur all about eating flesh. I am made of flesh, so I wasn’t too thrilled with the way this discussion was going.

Al and Ken are obviously nice caring people, whereas I might not be. My way of thinking is that it found its way in and will more than likely find its own way out. I have little or no interest in this bird, unless of course it decides to shit on me. Then, I would hope that in a panic it flies into a window and breaks its little neck. You might wonder what would panic a magpie. I say to you that a bird shit covered, retired postal worker attempting to kill him would be cause for panic in a magpie.

I have noticed a similar attitude when it comes to birds and other animals in the past. A few years ago in Calgary, around this time of year there was a duck that had somehow managed to get a plastic six pack holder thingy around its neck. Over the period of a week or two this duck managed to get the public attention. The fire department, city bylaw officers, humane society workers, cops and any number of other volunteers tried to capture this duck to save him from the beer rings. There were estimates of around $10,000 to $20,000 that the city and different departments spent on this noble cause. In the end a Good Samaritan leapt from a bridge and managed to get hold of the bird and free it from the plastic necklace. Oh, he also broke his leg. I can’t remember if he got the key to the city or not, but he definitely had his fifteen minutes. My solution would have been to get some hunter in to blast away with wild abandon. Cost of the shells might amount to a couple of bucks. There is a very good chance that some hunter did end up with the celebrity duck on his table.

We also have a problem with geese and the prodigious amount of crap that they generate and then leave in the parks. There is so much crap, that it isn’t pleasant to walk and certainly not possible to sit anywhere at all. There have been all sorts of discussions about what we can do to make the parks less attractive to the birds. I know a way! Get a bunch of good old boys out there with their weapons of choice and let them blast away. Nothing says “We don’t want you here!” better than gunshots. It seems like a simple solution. It would also help to feed the homeless in the city, and other than the odd tooth broken from biting down on some buckshot, everyone would be happy.

Toronto has the same problem with racoons. Same solution!

Could I be the only one that sees the easy solution? Perhaps I am, but there is a very good possibility that I am just a callous bastard!


  1. The Tea Party is looking for a leader with vision and gun friendly, from your rambling I think they may have their man. Expect a call from Sarah in the next few days, can you see Russia from your deck? B

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