Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Stop, look and listen

I am officially fed up with pheasants.

I very nearly hit my second of the week tonight when he decided to step out in front of me, totally oblivious to the fact I was driving a ton of rusty metal and he was but a few pounds covered in puffed up look-at-me-girls feathers. He was very nearly a mangled, bloody and broken mess of gold, russet and green.

Admittedly, I had been momentarily distracted by the sight of my first spring lambs silhouetted in the twilight at the top of a hill. I braked - hard - closed my eyes and when I opened them he was gone. Off, no doubt, to seek a lady friend to impress with tales of his escape from the big blue monster with the blinding eyes.

The cock pheasant that stepped out in front of me in the Monday dawn wasn't so lucky. His body was tossed into the air, its trajectory momentarily interrupted by hitting my windscreen with a sickening thud. Instinctively, I closed my eyes again, convinced the glass was about to shatter. I cannot understand how hit-and-run drivers can claim they were not aware they had hit someone when crashing into a pheasant makes such a racket.

I hate running over pheasants but at this time of year, the lust-blinded boys pay little heed to cars. I think it's such a shame after they have survived the winter, the fox and the gun that they have such an ignoble end. If pheasants spent more time flying and less time strutting, I'm sure there would be far fewer fatalties.

14 comments:

Expatmum said...

It's rather alarming to find one's immediate instinct is to close the eyes isn't it? I mean, how are you supposed to maintain control of your vehicle when you no longer have any idea anout what's happening in front of you?

Anonymous said...

Crikey ! I thought that sentence was going along the lines of 'I hate the thought of pheasants being run over but the lust-blinded boys don't pay much attention to what's on the road in front of them..'

Anyway, since when is it only us chaps that are 'lust-blinded' ?

Apropos of nothing in particular.. I was reading an article in the Times about that chappie who plays the lead role in the 'Diving Bell and the Butterfly'. His previous film [or maybe real life?] included a number of romantic liaisons in the French capital. It was described in the article as a 'Sexual safari in Paris'.

Now what we need is a travel agent who could fix up holidays like that.. Perhaps your readers have some suggestions of their own for exotic holidays which such a travel agent could rustle up in a 'Hotel Babylon meets Fantasy Island' style?

mutterings and meanderings said...

Expatmum, it is in indeed. I seem to be driven by the belief 'if you can't see it, it isn't there'...

Now Anon, in my experience of observing wildlife on and around Northumberland's roads, it is indeed the males that are lust driven and chasing the poor gals. I speak as I find!

mountainear said...

Hmm, we know where male pheasants brains are at this time of year don't we? Just why do they have to supplement those urges with a feast on my broccoli?

Mopsa said...

Did you take him home and pluck him M&M?

Night Owl said...

I remember getting a card once with pheasants learning the highway code, it said :-

Now, wait until you see a car coming, the step out.

I loved it.

Winchester whisperer said...

I made a very rich pheasant casserole the other day with bacon, mushrooms and lashings of hollandaise sauce. Not bad.

GeraniumCat said...

My other half reckoned that, on one of the routes he used to drive every week, the lovelorn cock pheasants lined up on a wall to throw themselves under his wheels. I got so sick of cooking pheasant I started feeding them to the cats.

rilly super said...

M&M, have you considered opening a branch of the famous 'roadkill cafe' local to you? Perhaps the Duchess will give you a concession in the gardens. You'd make a fortune.

Musical Midnight said...

This reminds me of some of our local variety of buzzards here. I was driving down a little-used highway one day...just me, my black beast (black Nissan with no air conditioning), and the road. A group of buzzards were picking at whatever entree the Roadkill Cafe served up at that time, and none of them noticed I was coming, at first. Finally, one by one, they started flying off as I approached, except for one bird-brained chap. I was practically on top of him before he decided to take to flight. He had just enough time to get two slow flaps of his wings and then WHOMPF.. next moment he was splayed out across my windshield, just kind of blinking at me.

I tried to slow down to give him enough time to get moving, but he just sat there, his wings fully stretching over my windshield. He only flew off once I turned my windshield wipers on him.

My friends were convinced I made the story up--until they found stray buzzard feathers in my wipers.

Anonymous said...

eminem - dare you to give some boy a surprise today and ask him to marry you !

Anonymous said...

I feel a bit like Nicholas Parsons here, but please tell us something about Lindisfarne for us soft southerners who weren't paying proper attention in our history lessons...

mutterings and meanderings said...

Lindisfarne
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lindisfarne

Gill said...

once upon a time we had a Citroen 2cv,as we drove roofless along a country lane a pheasant swooped very low across us and ended up mometarily in the back of the car.