I don't know anything much about birds, except that there are tons of them here in Tennessee and most of them seem to be situated right beside my bedroom window. And they all like to burst into song at the crack of dawn every morning. It wouldn't be too terrible to awaken to a few gentle twitterings and tweets, but the birds here are LOUD and one especially has a call that sounds just like he's saying "Fuck you..hee hee hee...Fuck You!"
I call him the the Fuck You Bird and fantasize about buying a BB gun and blasting him out of the tree.
I've never seen so much damn nature as I have since moving to Tennessee. My backyard literally teems with life. There are all kinds birds and snakes and little rodenty creatures, and I even see deer from time to time. Not to mention all the greenery and flowers and bugs.
This is a radical change from Riverside, California where I used to live. Riverside is pretty urban and very close to the desert. The only wild animal life I ever saw there were one or two fat and fearless raccoons digging through my garbage, and loads of dead skunks lying in the road after having been run over forty or fifty times.
It was still pretty noisy, although in a completely different way. There weren't a lot of birds around, but I would usually awaken early several days a week to the sound of my drug dealer neighbor beating the shit out of a deadbeat customer in the street, or else some sequence of screaming, gunshots, and police sirens. To hear all four at once was not uncommon. You get used to it though. I slept like a baby in my old neighborhood.
But all this woodsy stuff here in the burbs freaks me out a little. I've never been much of an outdoorsy type girl. Grass makes me itch, and pollen in the air makes my nose run. I much prefer to admire the beauty of nature the way God intended, by watching documentaries on Animal Planet. Coming face to face with wild animals scares me.
Last night, my dog Shirley cornered some sort of small feral beast in a tree and wouldn't stop barking. I hoped she would get bored and come back in after a while, but she stubbornly refused to come when I called. It was about 11:00 P.M. and I knew the neighbors would be getting pissy, so I reluctantly grabbed a flashlight and went out there.
It was super dark as there aren't any streetlights around here. I couldn't tell what sort of animal Shirley was barking at, all I could make out was a dark lump among the branches, but it's eyes glowed a devilish red as I shined the flashlight on it and it hissed in a way that made all the hairs stand up on the back of my neck.
"Come on, you stupid mutt!" I yelled at Shirley, and attempted to grab her collar but she kept skittering away from me. By that time her frantic barking had turned to howling and she started growling at me for trying to pull her away.
"Shit!" I thought. I didn't know what to do. In Riverside if a dog barked for a long time at night, someone would just go over and shoot it. I almost wished that would happen. This is why I don't own a gun because lemme tell ya, I was tempted to shoot her myself. I knew if I didn't shut her up soon, there'd be a whiney note in the mailbox tommorrow, saying something like this:
Dear Neighbor, I am going to call the Home Owners Association on you! I didn't pay good money to live next door to a godless heathen who sunbathes in the nude and can't control her beagle! Blah blah blah, etc.
I knew it would go like that because I've already received a couple of those.
The thing in the tree hissed again, louder and more angry sounding and I began to worry that it might have rabies. If it did, it would surely jump out of the tree right on to my head and scratch my face off. Scary! Can you imagine what a nightmare that would be? I stood there paralyzed with fear for a good ten minutes or so until it occurred to me to turn the hose on and pelt Shirley with a stream of cold water.
That finally did the trick. She's a total wimp when it comes to getting wet and ran inside immediately. I went to bed after that and forgot about the whole thing until the Fuck You birds woke me up this morning. I really hope that rabid possum or whatever it was is gone and won't be coming back anytime soon. Jason Vorhees in my backyard with a chainsaw wouldn't scare me nearly as much as a small furry savage critter that can scratch and bite.