bunt sign

Thursday, February 10, 2005

Sunday morning I got bounced out of bed way earlier than I like to get up (on any day, but especially the weekend). Why? I heard someone knocking on my door.

Thatís what I thought I was hearing, anyway. And I was too groggy and dim to realize that just because somebody had waded through the muddy driveway and hacked through the weeds to find my front door, that didnít mean I had to let them see me half-dressed and half-conscious. I could have ignored the knocking.

The thing is, there wasnít anybody at either door, front or back. In fact, on further reflection, I realized that the knocking I heard was a little too irregular to be coming from a normal personís knuckles. I peeked through the blinds and drapes on all sides of the house, just to be sure, but the only living creatures to be seen were the birds.

Hmmm. Birds. (But not hmmmingbirds, if thatís where you think this is going.)

You know, the Northern Flickers have been haunting the walnut tree at the corner of the back yard for a week or two. I donít know what these local woodpeckers were doing knocking on my door, but I was beginning to think that might be what was happening.

There was no more knocking (except for the FedEx driver Tuesday morning) until this afternoon. Same sound, same odd rhythm. This time I saw the flickers swooping in and out of the area just outside the dormer window above the great room. Yep, they were the culprits. And nope, theyíre not welcome. Iím not sure how Iím going to keep them away, except by giving broad hints. Like storming out the door and shouting at them. That seems to work, at least for a while.

10 February 2005

Sneak preview of September's coming attraction.
(Seen here at about 10 weeks, I think.)

Sunday it was just the one incident, lasting about ten minutes. (Itís hard to be precise, because I was half asleep.) Today it went on (and on and on) all afternoon. Off and on, really, if I want to be accurate about it. The birds would retreat to the walnut tree and wait for me to go back in the house.

Then, just when they thought Iíd forgotten about them (which, in fact, I had), they were back with the obnoxious and destructive knocking. Something must be living in the woodwork up there to make them so eager to peck it to pieces. I wonder if I should worry about that instead of the birds themselves.

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Iím pretty stoked about the 15-week Ultimate Tournament of Champions on Jeopardy, and not just because Ken Jennings will be back for the finals. The level of play has suffered since Mr. Jennings was defeated. Itís just too bad we couldnít have known that a neighbor of mine was going to be on the show. (Not someone I know, by the way, but a Rohnert Park pastor named Michael Rankins, who won his match and will return in the next round.) I searched the local paperís web site but could find no mention of this phenomenon. (I donít get the paper because their carriers are too lazy to deliver to my door, much like the substitute mail carrier who puts notes in my box.)

Recent recommendations can always be found on the links page.

One year ago: Tunnel
"They seem to have a hard time gathering all their things and walking out the door once their class is dismissed. You'd think our hovering over them would help, but it doesn't."

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