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Retired publishing executive ecstatic with the idea of spending most of his time on the coast of Maine

Wednesday, August 7, 2013


Yesterday afternoon, the resident flock of seagulls, aided slightly by the crows on the shore, decided to raise ruckuses. Three or four times, for periods of 10 or 15 minutes each, they flew back and forth over the water screaming or squealing or squawking, or however English describes their calls. As with so much of animal behavior, it seemed inexplicable, at least to me. Naturally, I've been imagining reasons ever since.
  • War/rain dance/sabbath/mating rituals - not that there was any discernible patterns to the workings out of their various religious passions
  • Insouciance - see how we can fly so expertly and you can't
  • Practice for the Feast of Flying Ants night 
  • Bird Olympics - some infinitely complex synchronized flying competition, in heats?
  • Noise continuation - my own strong suspicion, for all day yesterday on our shore, a couple of lots down from us, there was the buzzing rasp of a chainsaw cutting down and chunking up trees and the banging and groaning of an excavator digging up stumps, and the seagulls, being warlike and insouciant and hungry and competitive, were trumpeting their approval of this destruction, while this Homo sapiens was listening and watching and wondering about the new house to be built there, and how big it is to be, and more specifically, what is the wisdom in clear-cutting the lot, except for the thin borders of trees providing a buffer with the neighbors on each side, considering that trees are pretty much the only friends that Homo sapiens has in the fight against climate change, and although I'm sure there's a good, explicable reason for the clear-cut, not merely
  • A matter of convenience for the big machines
  • A larger expanse of lawn
  • A better view
yet this Homo sapiens want to change his species name to Homo tristis.