Do weeds feel it, when you pull them up?

The top search engine term for this site is “naughty voyeur pics.” It leads to a post about sparrows’ mating dances, and the reproductive shenanigans of gulls. I can’t help but wonder why anyone looking for dirty snaps goes so far as to click in. I mean, Google provides a little excerpt, along with the link — which, in this case, reads “First of all, let it be noted that the bird of prey in my last entry is not, as I’d imagined, a gyrfalcon. With the help of several more pairs of eyes …“. It would be abundantly clear, to even the most distracted observer, that the page in question’s about birds. Has it something to do with the mention of birds of prey? Is there some predatory instinct that drives both the urge towards covert fleshly peepings, and the urge to watch a falcon tear something to bits? Is one as good as the other, when the mood strikes? Is the sad fate of Prometheus a common bedroom fantasy? Fortunately for anyone reading, I don’t know, and must therefore end this ghastly line of speculation, here.

The most common search engine term for my other site is (in keeping with the tone of this post, so far!) “scary things.” But the most memorable one, which pops up only once in a while, is this question: “Do weeds feel it, when you pull them up?” Sadly, seekers after weedly sensations meet with the same disappointment as dirty birdies: I don’t provide an answer to that, either. (But, should the same seekers after botanical truth begin to arrive here, instead, here’s a spot of satisfaction: no. No, I can’t imagine they do. Weeds don’t have any nervous system, or comparable structure; they’ve nothing that would allow them to feel — not in any way we’d find familiar, anyhow. I think I can quite safely promise that, by yanking a pesky weed, one brings no extra suffering into the world.)

Speaking of suffering, I was almost bitten by a bird, today. I was filling up the feeder, and an overeager sparrow jumped on my hand. I could FEEL it getting ready to peck me. It was looking up at me, with this malevolent birdy twinkle in its eye…and then I twitched my hand away, all quick-like, and the sparrow fell off the balcony. (Good thing they can fly!) I’d actually expected it to plop neatly into the feeder — you know, like when a magician pulls the tablecloth from under a dinner service, and inertia keeps everything in place. But I think I startled the poor mite; fright and inertia don’t quite mesh.

A sparrow. The sparrow?

Could this be the one that jumped on my hand?  Maybe.  I don't know.  All sparrows look the same.

Could this be the one that jumped on my hand? Maybe. I don’t know. All sparrows look the same.

Starling time!

I'm never going to get a good picture of this starling.  Yesterday, it stood so I couldn't see its feet.  Today, it showed up with a big splotch of bird lime on its wing.  I must say, I'd expected starlings to be a lot more photogenic.

I’m never going to get a good picture of this starling. Yesterday, it stood so I couldn’t see its feet. Today, it showed up with a big splotch of bird lime on its wing. I must say, I’d expected starlings to be a lot more photogenic.

An unfamiliar crow

I'm not sure what was up with this crow.  It was lurking around the garden, all day, trying out various perches, and squawking its little head off.  It came to my feeder, a couple of times, but seemed rather wary of me.  I tried moving away from the window, to give it some confidence, but this place is tiny.  There's really nowhere I can sit, where a crow can't look in and see me.  (Well, there is ONE place, but I'm not hiding in the loo so a bird can have a snack.)

I’m not sure what was up with this crow. It was lurking around the garden, all day, trying out various perches, and squawking its little head off. It came to my feeder, a couple of times, but seemed rather wary of me. I tried moving away from the window, to give it some confidence, but this place is tiny. There’s really nowhere I can sit, where a crow can’t look in and see me. (Well, there is ONE place, but I’m not hiding in the loo so a bird can have a snack.)

Not to worry:  a rotten apple on the roof across from mine provided a tasty (?) alternative to eating in my presence.

Not to worry: a rotten apple on the roof across from mine provided a tasty (?) alternative to eating in my presence.

This is the same crow, again, eating something it got from my feeder.  It went down to the garden with it, perhaps labouring under the misapprehension that I couldn't see it, there.

This is the same crow, again, eating something it got from my feeder. It went down to the garden with it, perhaps labouring under the misapprehension that I couldn’t see it, there.

Proof of having been outdoors

A tiny car.  If I could drive, I'd want one of these.  That way, I'd be able to get around, but nobody could ask me to help them move.

A tiny car. If I could drive, I’d want one of these. That way, I’d be able to get around, but nobody could ask me to help them move.

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