Today is National Pet Bird Day! OK, we know, every day is something national, but it gives us a great excuse to post some really beautiful bird tattoos. Not to mention, it also gives your humble writer the opportunity to complain about the horrors of having a bird in the house.
To be clear, I’m not talking about having a pet bird in the house. A little cockatoo sitting on your shoulder while you cook would be delicious, especially if this bird mimicked all of your curses. It’s the best.
No, I’m talking about when a wild bird walks into the house uninvited. It is pure chaos. And the horror.
A few years ago, around Christmas, a bird entered our house. We had a fake holly wreath on the front door, with little red styrofoam berries. Although the berries were as far from food as an object could be, the birds in the neighborhood loved them. They kept landing on the crown, trying to savor a delicious red berry, then flew away with what I can only imagine to be a wave of overwhelming disappointment when they found out the berries were a trick. on the holiday theme.
On the day in question, there was a package on the front porch. Absently, I opened the door and grabbed the package and brought it inside. What I didn’t see was that there was a little bird — I think it was a chickadee — sitting on the crown. I met the eyes of the beast as I closed the door. It was then that I recognized how tense the situation was, so I stopped my movement and tried to move in slow motion. I figured if I moved the door quickly the bird would fly around the house, but if I moved slowly I might be able to close the door before the bird understood what was going on. It turns out my efforts were in vain and the bird has taken flight, heading straight for our living room.
It is still unclear what happened over the next 10 minutes, but I can tell you it was a real pandemonium. There were so many screams from my mom, but honestly I think most of it was fun. It was an event. We didn’t invite this bird in, we had to do everything we could to get it out of the house, but it was exciting! It’s the kind of thing my mom loved.
My girlfriend rushed into the house, closing all the doors so we could contain the little bird. I ran to the garage, scanning the shelves for some sort of tool: a broom, a butterfly net, a hockey stick, anything that could help us gently encourage the bird to vamoose. Finally, I opted for a Swiffer. It seemed to be less lethal and, more importantly, anything I stumbled upon would be less likely to shatter. While I would never hurt a cute little bird, I was much more worried about incurring my mother’s wrath.
The bird mostly flew around in the living room, completely oblivious to any silly humans trying to get it back outside. Then, when he got tired of circling, the bird rushed for the door, never to come back.
It was a test to which we return with fondness. Mainly because in the end the bird was able to get to safety. And, perhaps more importantly, we weren’t inadvertently faced with a new pet bird that refused to leave our home.
Happy National Pet Bird Day!