The Saga Continues….

Rocket-man notes that I have been on edge lately. Remember, he’s über Mensa smart!   He doesn’t have a PhD. for nothing folks!

Aside from concern and angst over my aging parents and uncertainty about a plethora of things, what could possibly make me feel edgier than usual?  Perhaps it’s because I gave up all cheese for Lent?

OK…well maybe this no cheese thing is affecting my mood just a wee bit but in all honesty I’d say it’s because of that $@#!-ing bird!

Yes, indeed…. unfortunately the saga of Mr. Harold Headbanger, the Northern Red Cardinal,  continues.

Folks, he is still alive….and who would have thunk it so after hours upon hours of head-butting the windows for over a month now.  More importantly, The Poodle is still alive!  Quite honestly for a moment, if you would have asked me yesterday, I would have told you he’s hanging on to life by a thread.  Point in fact: I was just nodding off to a lovely afternoon siesta… when ….yes…you guessed it!  And no, I was not a picture of loveliness for a few minutes.  My salvation (and The Poodle’s) was espresso and a chocolate biscotti.

To maintain a shred of sanity I was forced to ship The Poodle off to doggie day care for extra play days last week just so that I could have a respite from a day of barking.  I vented to my California friend, Miss Lou, just the other day.  She is The Poodle’s biggest fan (after Rocket-man and me naturally).  Miss Lou, is partially responsible for bringing this bundle of four-legged joy into our lives; without her, it quite possibly never would have happened.

I am eternally grateful….but…..

“The barking is making me stir crazy, “ I tell Miss Lou.  “I’m ready to ship The Poodle to China!”   Miss Lou is quite sympathetic and she is just as amazed as I that this bird’s behavior has continued on for so long.  She lets me vent which I appreciated enormously; unloading is often all that is needed to calm the storms within.

Note:  A window dressing does not deter a stupid Cardinal!

Note: A window dressing does not deter a stupid Cardinal!

So….A week ago I had leaned a large garden rake against one of the windows in an effort to deter Harold’s head-butting behavior to that particular window.  I even affixed a metal lawn ornament of flowers to the rake to add additional confusion for the bird.  For two entire days Harold didn’t touch that window so I thought I had won that battle at least.   “Not so fast,” the damned bird seemed to say.   Sunday at precisely 6:15 a.m. while Rocket-man and I were perusing through the Sunday paper, Mr. Harold Headbanger was up and at ‘em, this time going around the rake propped up against the window.

“I’m baa-aack!”  says Harold.

Simply amazing!   The Poodle immediately started barking..a lot…which of course compelled me to follow with a couple of expletives.  It’s too early in the morning to start this barking nonsense!  I haven’t even finished my first cup of espresso!

Not a calm (nor spiritual) start to a Sunday to be sure.

“There’s got to be a way to get rid of this **&^@#! bird,” I yell.

I can pull the shades down on the eight windows in the family room/kitchen area but I can’t do anything about the large window area that spans the second floor (I don’t have a ladder that will reach that window).  This appears to be Harold’s favorite area.  Sigh…..

My head is starting to pound  (far too early for that!).  I need to get out of the house and away from this bird….

Fortunately it’s a gloriously beautiful morning.  So I grab my iPod and ear buds and with one command, “Go Car,” The Poodle leaps with knowing joy to run to the car.  He LOVES car outings.  We head down the hill and minutes later we are parked and ready for our 7-mile walk on the local “green-way” path that cuts through the Robert Trent Jones golf course.

The sun is shining and after months of bitter cold it is finally warm enough to need only a light jacket.  I’m thoroughly enjoying a fast walk with The Poodle while listening to a Mozart playlist when we come upon a group of twenty or so people all dressed in camouflage hunting type attire.

Pulling my ear buds out I stop to ask a well-coiffed woman with terrific leather boots (they must be Italian, I gush…and “yes, they are” she replies) about the group of people gathered about with their dogs.  I learn that the group is from a local hunting club.  Members are training their young dogs in the art of “Retrieval 101.”

The Poodle and I stand, a good distance away from the group, to observe for a few minutes.   I watch mesmerized as a fellow behind a camouflage duck blind throws a duck toy out into a marshy area.  Then another fellow some distance away in the opposite direction instructs his dog to sit and stay before yet another fellow shoots a bb-gun into the air.  The dog is then instructed to “Go…Fetch.”  And he does so brilliantly; shooting off from his master’s side like a rocket, running at lightening speed, then slowing to sniff around for a moment or two until he finds the duck toy, retrieves it, and returns straight away back to the feet of his master.

Cool….I’m thinking …maybe this would be good training for The Poodle.  After all, he needs a new activity, other than barking at a stupid Cardinal all day long.   I look down at my boy.  What was I thinking?  The poor dear was already lost with fear just over the pop sound of a BB gun!   With his tail between his legs he’s pulling me vigorously in the opposite direction.  His eyes say it all; “Get me the hell out of here, please!”   Of course I quickly comply.  I don’t want my baby traumatized.

Now If only he  could agree to stop barking for me.  That would be sheer bliss.

The saga continues…

7 thoughts on “The Saga Continues….

  1. Have you considered building a screen from a rudimentary frame of 1″x2″ or whatever, depending on how you would support it, and covering it with chicken wire or nylon netting with large openings to form a barrier in front of the window? It would allow light in, and allow the view (with minor obstruction) but eliminate collisions with the window, being instead collisions with the screen, which shouldn’t transmit much sound from the impact, if the bird would even fly into the screen at all, or more than once. Such a screen could be hung from the gutter, the roof joists if exposed, tacked to the wall (depending on construction), made from 2″x4″ and supported on the ground below the window, or whatever. You get the picture.


    Sent from my iPhone


    • Something to think about if I miss him with a gun (which mostly likely would be the case). HA. Rocket-man thought your engineering solution interesting! Another suggestion was to string fishing line/wire across the window….that wouldn’t look as ….um….redneck! My auntie called in with a suggestion that worked for her some time ago… a motion-activated device emitting a frequency sound only to birds called the Riddix Bird Repller. I checked reviews on Amazon and they were totally mixed. Harold has not come a-knocking yet today because its raining.


  2. I haven’t been following the bird saga closely, so I don’t remember what all you’ve tried, but it would seem that your pet bird is trying to fly through the opening into the house for some reason, but is ignoring the objective evidence that the opening is not truly open but covered with some invisible film (humans call it “glass”). If so the answer might be as simple as placing a 6″ or so grid of painter’s tape on the window to call attention to the invisible film, which would be a lot easier than building a screen.


    Sent from my iPhone


  3. This continues to humor me! No, not due to the ever-increasing pictures Cristina posts of the ever-growing paraphernalia accumulating outside her windows. No, not because of her clever wit and wild imaginings to the demise of said bird. No, not because of the rantings of Mr. Poodle…because of course, she could have more than one! And, no not from someone who hasn’t experienced all the above…because I have, in one way or another…

    But because each time I read of her wailings, I try to help. I go to the Intelligent Internet searching for remedies. After all, I am a BIRDER. Someone who has somehow found herself linked to those wild flutterings and consider myself a tad bit above amateur for the past 16 years…

    And each time I discover a new “this or that”, that will surely end both the bird’s and the human’s suffering…

    The newest actually made me laugh out loud:
    It is to stand at the ready, garden hose in hand, with a high-intensity water attachment, strategically placed so that when the said offender bird begins his actions, she is to start spraying him with water, deflecting his attention from the windows and hopefully chasing him out of the yard.

    While this would require much physical activity and possibly even some form of calamity…the imagery simply couldn’t be funnier. I see a red-headed human chasing a red-headed bird with streams of water all over the yard.

    Then it occurs to me…



    Ok, seriously…there are APPS for this….

    Then, one could call the local BIRDING CLUB, (they are in every town), and solicit their help. I am thinking they would actually enjoy coming over and helping. Or so I would think… I would…

    Cristina, ok one last suggestion…get a Coopers Hawk!


    • “Cookie”…..I’m rolling in laughter too over this new perspective. I mean really….its my luck that I attract not Tom Selleck….not Matthew McConaughey…not Pick-Any-Handsome-Dude’s-name-if-you-will…. but instead I’m being stalked by a freakin’ bird. Totally pathetic. Not doing much for my aging ego…sigh. So a Coopers Hawk….hmmmm…. Anyhow….expect a call from me later. We’ll be discussing this over wine and chocolates (I hope) at the end of the month!


  4. Brando has the bloodlines to be an excellent hunting dog… yet due to his age and upbringing i suspect this will not come to pass… Harold Headbanger will eventually find a new mate, relocate or expire as all highly metabolized creatures do… Please know that I have truly enjoyed your “Winter in Middle Earth” and really look forward to your next postings…. You have a great talent as a storyteller my sister… look forward to your future scribing’s! P.S. I’m glad that you are Happy and O.K. Larry.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.