Two things that happened to me before breakfast, today:

1) I put on my coat, and a spider fell out of the sleeve;
2) I got attacked by a renegade song sparrow.

Thing the first: well, there’s not much more to that. Coat; spider; thirty-second chase — aw, rats; spider’s attained the brown living-room carpet, and is now invisible — no, wait; there it is — squash; no more spider. It’s funny, though. Just a day or two ago, I was thinking it’d been a while since a spider had come in, and poof…spider. Hmm. It’s been a while since anybody’s given me a really expensive present, like a 500mm Nikon-compatible lens, or a piece of real estate. Eh? No? Ah, well.

Thing the second: I feel a bit silly, here — try not to laugh too hard — but I read on the Internet that a sneaky hissing noise, like pssh-pssh-pssh-pssh-pssh-pssh, is catnip to birds, and will draw them in from far and wide, to investigate. This noise is supposed to be especially attractive to small passerines. I like small passerines. I hear small passerines. I know they’re out there, hiding in the bushes. Why not give it a go?

About ten minutes into my balcony hiss-a-thon, this showed up —

Seriously?  Are you kidding me?

Seriously? Are you kidding me?

Really? That’s what I get? I can’t even credit my hissing: that sparrow’s a daily visitor. I know it’s the same one by its feet (note the odd-coloured claws). Also, when it looked up from its feed and noticed me hissing at it, it seemed more annoyed than intrigued. It did a wee spring forward, and issued a warning squeak. Quite aggressive, for such a small bird. I tried again, in case, y’know, it hadn’t heard me right, and the wee bugger CHARGED me! I swear, if I hadn’t shut the door, it might’ve entered my living room. (The horror!) It stood on the railing and stared, for a while, before returning to its meal.

So. I’ve been chastised by a sparrow, and my neighbours probably think I’m some sort of…hissing maniac. Nice morning’s birding, what?

(Anyone else tried this hissing technique? Could it be that I’m doing it wrong? Do my teeth whistle too much? Am I supposed to wet my lips first? Do I hiss fast, like pshpshpshpshpshpshpsh, or at a more relaxed rate, like pssssssssh … pssssssssssssssssh … pssssssssssssssssssssssh? Aw, soddit; damn birds — too clever by half!)

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