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Vandals strike, off hook again October 20, 2008

Posted by ourfriendben in critters, wit and wisdom.
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3 comments

In breaking news, the vandals that ransacked the Hawk’s Haven birdfeeders have struck again. (See our earlier report, “Newsflash: Vandals strike, off hook for now” for coverage of the original incident.) Called to the scene by a distraught Silence Dogood, Feline Bureau of Investigation special agent Linus Beaumaine at first could find no sign of the missing feeder, only the dangling hook where it had been just the previous night.

“I just bought that hook on Saturday so we could hang the feeder again!” wailed Ms. Dogood. “I can’t believe the villains struck again!”

A thorough search of the premises revealed the feeder, empty but unharmed, lying in a clump of pulmonaria some yards from the house. “These are desperate times,” Agent Beaumaine cautioned. “It’s unwise to hang feeders within reach of these vandals. You’re lucky the feeder managed to survive two such vicious assaults. Few feeders would have escaped unscathed.”

Ms. Dogood confirmed that, just last week, she’d heard a horror story about plastic tube feeders being ripped to shreds by squirrels as they hung innocently on their hooks in a suburban North Carolina yard. The Hawk’s Haven feeder, a cheap little Droll Yankees all-plastic Bird Lovers model, was, against all odds, still in excellent condition.

Declining to take Special Agent Linus’s surprisingly sensible advice, Ms. Dogood insisted on returning the feeder to its hook on the rose-of-Sharon shrub. “I can see these feeders while I’m working on the computer,” she explained. “If I move them, I won’t be able to enjoy watching the birds nearly as much, since I’m in our home office most of the day. Besides,” she added, turning an accusing look on the unfortunate FBI agent, “What about this other feeder?! It’s the same kind of feeder, also filled with black oil sunflower seeds, and it’s hanging in the same shrub, barely a foot away from the plundered feeder, yet the vandals don’t bother it at all!”

Special Agent Linus appeared to be at a loss for words. Not one to let a chance for free publicity escape, President Ben took advantage of the momentary pause to say a few words. “Let’s try to keep this unspeakable outrage in perspective,” he said, while refilling the plundered feeder. “True, the perpetrators remain at large, despite¬†our friends at the Feline Bureau’s best efforts. But we remain undaunted. We still have the feeder, and at least they didn’t make off with the hook this time.”

Smiling confidently (at least, until he realized that cub reporter Marley had failed to bring a camera crew with him to the crime scene), President Ben attempted to assure Ms. Dogood that all would be well. “In addition to the ongoing efforts of our worthy special agent here, I’ve retained the services of Private Investigator Danticat, who will continue to skulk unobtrusively in the nearby evergreens while waiting for the fiends to show themselves. Justice will be served! Nobody’s getting off the hook during my tenure in office, unless they show up with some really tasty bribes or, say, a bottle of very expensive port or bourbon.”

Attempting a conciliatory tone, President Ben added, “Uh, Silence, I do think we should consider hanging that feeder a bit higher up in the rose-of-Sharon. You could still see it from the office window, and after all, not everyone who fills the feeder is 5’5″.”

Unfortunately, this attempt at reasoning did not appear to have the effect the president was seeking. When last seen, he (along with P.I. Danticat, Special Agent Linus, the police, and your faithful reporter) was running for cover while pursued by a torrent of abuse from a highly incensed Ms. Dogood, who seemed to feel that “heightist” comments were uncalled for, especially during a traumatic time like this. As your reporter was fleeing the scene at the time, I can’t verify this, but I believe I saw a few spruce cones being hurled at President Ben’s rapidly retreating back by the enraged Ms. Dogood, whose aim was, all things considered, surprisingly good.

Further reports may be forthcoming, if I can find another reporter who’s willing to fill in. Meanwhile, the criminals remain at large. Readers are encouraged to bring their birdfeeders in at night to avoid a similar fate.

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Newsflash: Vandals strike, off hook for now October 10, 2008

Posted by ourfriendben in critters, homesteading, wit and wisdom.
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4 comments

Hawk’s Haven, Pennsylvania

In breaking news, it has been reported that vandals attacked the rural property of our friend Ben and Silence Dogood last night. The victims reported that, on opening the curtains this morning, they observed that a tube feeder had been pulled off its hook in the front yard and carried some distance away. Its contents were missing.

“I couldn’t believe it,” a tearful Ms. Dogood told police at the scene. “Nothing like this has ever happened here before. And it was one of our birds’ favorite feeders, too!”

Feline Bureau of Investigation Agent Linus Beaumaine offered reporters his take on the motive for the crime. “The oil crisis is to blame,” he announced. “The vandals removed all the sunflower seeds from the feeder. Clearly, they were stealing them in order to extract oil from the seeds to offset rising prices.”

A conflicting theory was proposed by private investigator Danticat, who was observed nosing around the scene of the crime. “The handmade wrought-iron hook that held this feeder is missing,” the P.I. pointed out. “I believe the hook was the actual target of the desperate criminals, who plan to sell it to a scrap yard for cash, or even to an unsuspecting antiques dealer.”

President Ben asks all residents of Hawk’s Haven to remain calm while the investigation continues. “These terrorists will be brought to justice,” he asserted. “The feeder may be off the hook, but I assure you the crooks won’t be. And meanwhile, our upgraded feeder program will ensure that no bird will be left behind.”

Stay tuned for new developments.