Yesternight that sodding bird climbed up a few rungs on my “HATE LADDER“.
I woke up at about 4:30am for some reason or another last night, and for some reason found it impossible to fall back asleep. I didn’t feel particularly tired, but I knew that that bastard bird was out there (whatever he’s supposed to be) – I couldn’t hear him yet but I knew full well that he’d start his onslaught of squawks and keep me awake for the best part of the early morning if I didn’t fall asleep soon.
Unfortunately, no amount of pulling the blanket over myself to cover my entire body, repositioning the pillows to allow for maximum comfort, or adjusting my posture, would permit my body the winks of sleep that it deserved.
Already I could feel my sanity slipping away. That squawk could shatter souls. And that is basically all that it does, because there is nothing, at least in earshot, to hear it. That obnoxious attention-whore of a bird just does that for no other purpose than to annoy me.
Of course, I can close my window and put my earplugs in but I find it so much more self-satisfying to attempt to tackle the problem at its source, rather than pretending it’s just not happening – if you’re being repeatedly punched in the face, you don’t put on a blindfold and hope that the pain will go away if you just ignore it – no, you kick that bastard right in the knackers.
So, not for the first time, I decided to attempt to confront him. I got out of bed, slipped on my sandals, put on a T-shirt (the wrong way round, of course, but I was in no mood for fussing over details), and armed myself with a small but powerful torchlight.
I wandered into the kitchen towards the patio door and… couldn’t get it open. Bastard thing hardly ever cooperates with me when I need it to.
I was as though he was actually mocking me.
So I decided I’d try the other patio door in the laundry room. On my way there I blundered into a cardboard box and nearly fell over, with enough noise that it should’ve woken the whole household but miraculously didn’t. I carried on towards the laundry room, and got the slidy door open in a near-instant.
I trudged through the little passageway leading to the back lawn.
My goal with this little expedition wasn’t exactly unreachable – I’d shine the torchlight onto him to give him some indication that he was being sought out. Last time I tried this, I actually got him to shut up. (Until I walked back inside again, of course, which pointed out the futility of the whole exercise – if you’re not a cat or a game hunter, name a battle of wits against a bird that you can feasibly win.)
Unfortunately, this bird is a master of stealth. He places himself in the tree strategically so that you can’t actually see him even with a set of X-ray binoculars. But he is absolutely definitely in this particular tree.
I shone the torchlight up into its branches, and tried to pinpoint exactly where the obnoxious avian caterwauler was perched. I shook it back and forth to try and a more obvious and intrusive signal. (Maybe I should’ve tried spelling out “SHUT YOUR PIEHOLE” in Morse Code with it.)
Sonuvabitch. GET THE HINT YOU STUPID BIRD.
He gave a grand total of zero shits that he was being blinded by a sort of miniature floodlight. He must have known I was down there, I could hear him virtually right above my head – but could I see him? Oh, if only.
I searched for something to throw at him. But there’s like nothing in the back garden – only a few small bushes, a bunch of spiky, malnourished grass and a lemon tree. Certainly not a pool, or any kind of rockery full of potential bird-killing stones. I found a couple of large rocks but they looked a bit too heavy to fling the distance required for me to get anywhere near where the bird was in the tree – and they looked like they might cause a substantial bit of property damage if I were to overegg the throw.
Wait, what’s that whooshing sound, and why do I suddenly feel like I’m getting wet?
…The friggin’ retic had come on.
I had picked the one night of the week that those things were scheduled to come on, and now the sprinklers all around the garden started spraying water liberally over the lawn. I only got marginally soaked, but even so my wits were drawing closer to their demise. I had traversed the full length of my tether. The color I was seeing was by now a violent shade of crimson.
Of course, I’m not a violent or loud individual, so instead of swearing and potentially waking the whole suburb with my seething rage, I opted to just throw a twig into the tree as hard as I could in disgust at how horribly I’d failed my mission. Completely missed, obviously, and wouldn’t you know, he just kept on going.
I must’ve been out there for about 20 minutes and it was already getting lighter. I considered myself defeated. You win this round, squawky. FOR NOW.
My head hung low, I started walking back towards– ABBLGPBLPH WATER IN MY FACE AAALFLFGPFLPBLH
I hadn’t even noticed the two sprinklers in that little passage leading back to the laundry room. I was effectively trapped outside unless I wanted to get soaking wet.
I must have stood there, with my wet, back-to-front T-shirt on, for about 10 minutes waiting for the things to go off, but they didn’t. Eventually I decided that I had two options: (1) stand outside indefinitely and wait for the sprinklers to turn off, all the while hearing smeg-for-brains screaming and hollering behind me, or (2) use my amazing ninja powers to make my way stealthily back into the house and evade getting water on (and in) every bit of my body.
I chose the second option, after some deliberation – although I had to improvise somewhat due to my severe lack of any sort of physical prowess, let alone “amazing ninja powers”. I hugged the wall of the house as I passed by them (since they were turned the other way towards the flower beds laid parallel to it) and actually stayed fairly dry… until I had to walk over one of them, which got my leg and my sandal thoroughly drenched.
I dried my feet, left my sandals just inside the patio door, locked up, and then went back to bed. No sooner had my head hit the pillow, than…
Oh, now that’s just insulting. Trust him to shut up now. If I had my way, that bird would have little going through his mind right now, other than a large, blunt rock.
As a result of all this I woke up close to 1pm this morning and felt like shit. Predictable. I can see that this battle of wits might go on for some time, as long as that tree he loves so much isn’t felled or something.
(As a matter of fact, the tree directly next to this one was cut down with a chainsaw the day before. It’d be nice to think that it was a kind of “word of warning” to the bird, but even if it was, he didn’t take the hint.)
I could really use someone in the know of Western Australian birds, by the way – that is, someone who could identify species just by approximate textual transcriptions of its “call”. I pose the question to you, fellow bloggers, what might this narcissistic numbskull of a night-terror go by the name of? 🙁