For the last couple of weeks, we have had a problem at our school.
Dive Bombing Birds.
It first started on the day we had our On Site Common Core Training (you know – when I found out I’m a Smoothie). One of our presenters was on his way back to the library when we all watched a bird crash-land right onto his head. We gasped.
And then we laughed. Some of us may have laughed a little harder than others. I’m not naming any names.
What a freak thing, we thought.
Until we took a break, and headed to the lounge, and every single brunette was almost taken out by two low-flying birds.
Us blondes? We were good to go.
Turns out those birds had a nest in a bush right outside my classroom window. Which just so happens to be right across from our library. And which just so happens to be on the path that every student, parent, teacher, and admin walk along to get to the rest of the campus. In fact, we have shoe prints painted onto the sidewalk so that children take this exact path. Don’t ask me why. I do not know. The shoe prints are blue, and they are windy (not windy like the weather, but windy with a long i vowel sound), and what should take a kid one minute to get to the office takes more like five because they try to match up their shoes onto the blue shoes and they take the windy-isn’t-it-nice-to-be-killing-time-math-is-too-hard-today-path rather than the straight-across-get-there-in-a-jiffy-path.
Well, those birds guarded that path as if their lives depended on it. They took it quite seriously. Over the course of the next few days, they got braver and braver.
They would fly into and out of people’s hair. Zoom!
Children of all ages? Yes.
A bald man? Yes. He said he could feel the gust of the wings flapping by his head.
Blondes? Eventually. Yes. Us too.
There were stories of people being pecked. Not true, but I suppose the wings felt like it as they flapped past people’s heads. It’s important to know no one was pecked or harmed. Maybe they were given the willies or frightened a bit, but no one was actually hurt.
An innocent little boy told his teacher (my partner), “Guess what?! Guess what?! A bird fell on my head today!”
Hate to burst your bubble there, little fella, but he didn’t fall on your head. He attacked you. We died laughing.
Each day, I watched outside my windows (before school, while teaching, and after school) as teachers concocted various ways of being free from Bird Dive Bombings.
One would swing her lanyard with keys around and around like helicopter blades. (This was my preferred method, too.)
Another would talk to them. “I’m not getting your baby birds. I’m just walking to class. Leave me alone.”
Another would carry rolled up butcher paper and karate chop the air as she walked past.
All of these made me laugh and laugh. Because as I watched outside my window, I would just see crazy teachers either swinging things in the air and/or talking to themselves, and no birds. So they looked slightly crazy. Or normal for this time of the year. Take your pick.
The best ones were the teachers, parents, support staff, or kids who somehow had no clue about the birds and walked blindly into their path. Poor unsuspecting souls.
TAKE THAT! The birds would say as they flew into and out of their hair. WHIZZZ. SWOOSH.
And these unsuspecting souls would duck and crouch and look behind them and scratch their heads.
And I would laugh and laugh. When I would tell my husband the latest bird story, I could barely get the words out, and he’d be laughing too. I had my family in tears as I acted out the teachers with their weapons of butcher paper and keys, and the must-be-living-under-a-rock people who had no clue a bird was about to get them. I also loved to act it out for the teachers on my team who also saw it live and in person, but you know me, I’m a drama queen, and we would laugh and laugh all over again.
One morning, as we were saying the Pledge of Allegiance, I saw a particularly vicious dive bombing out of the corner of my eye. Just as I tried to smother my giggle, one of my boys started giggling as he said the pledge. That just set me off. So he and I giggled our way through the pledge which I know is disrespectful so please don’t write me a letter or turn me into the Patriotic Citizens of the U.S. We couldn’t help it! Especially when he turned to me and said, “Did you see that?!” all hilarious-like.
I just knew that those birds were going to get me BIG TIME because I kept laughing every time they got someone else. Karma, if you will.
There were times I would go the super long way that made absolutely no sense because I was afraid THAT DAY was THE DAY and it was going to be my turn. Other times, I prayed.
Please protect me from the birds. Please don’t let them mess up my hair. Or poop on me. Amen.
Well, I’m happy to tell you I was never dive bombed.
This story does not have a happy ending.
Because as much as I was afraid of the darn birds, I understood they were doing their job. They were protecting their babies. But other people did not feel the same way. There was talk about liability and danger and unsafe environment and blah blah blah. So calls were made. And some guy showed up.
And even though we were told he was a wild life preservationist or something important like that, he wasn’t.
My partner and I watched out my window as he grabbed the nest of baby birds and dumped it on the ground.
I told you. NOT A HAPPY ENDING.
The mama and daddy birds were going crazy.
My partner and I were in tears.
It was HORRIBLE.
And now I can’t stop thinking about it.
And I’m going to write a strongly worded letter to somebody. But I don’t know who.
One of our male teachers was so outraged that he kind of yelled at the guy.
But I don’t know who or why or how it ended this way.
I just know the birds are gone now and it’s safe to walk on the path.
But I miss the birds.
And I feel sad. 🙁