Monday, May 4, 2009

Birds, Boxes and Book Stores


Alfred Hitchcock freaked me out as a child. I can remember KTLA running commercials for their Hitchcock Marathons and showing clips that were mesmerizing and terrifying at the same time. Children running from attacking birds, Janet Leigh being stabbed by a disembodied arm. I still won't take a shower in the house alone!

Saturday a friend and I took our children to the beach (the husbands were working). When we got hungry, we bought two orders of milkshakes, fish and chips to share. My daughter was having too much fun dragging seaweed onto the beach to stop and eat her food, so I left the box sitting by my hip on the blanket.

I noticed a seagull staring at me. I would turn and talk to my friend, and the next time I looked up, the seagull would be closer. He was creeping me out. I took a picture with my phone and sent it to my husband.

The next time I turned away, I heard a rustling of feathers, felt the box jerk away. I looked up and that crazy seagull had tried to fly away with my box of food. He got about six feet from me before everything spilled out. A hundred birds instantly swarmed us, devouring the food in less than a minute. I don't even know where they came from. I barely had time to scream!

The weird thing was, after they were done eating, the birds stayed there staring at me. No amount of yelling, shooing or flapping would make them leave. So with visions of Hitchcock running through our heads, we left.

New rule for beach food: if you aren't eating it, cover it, or suffer the consequences. I learned the hard way.

On another, far less disturbing note, May is National Independent Bookseller's Month. I wrote an article about Solvang's independent book store, The Book Loft, that is posted on the Shrinking Violet's website. Get out there and support your local indies by buying lots of books from them. (The new Percy Jackson comes out tomorrow so I'll be at The Book Loft for my copy!)

13 comments:

PJ Hoover said...

This happened to me once. Could not believe it.
I saw your article at SVP! Great job! I'm doing our indie later this month!

C.R. Evers said...

LOL! I'm one of the crazy people that feeds the birds on purpose. My hubby doesn't like swarms of birds, so I have a good time freaking him out when I pull out the bag of bread meant just for my feathered friends. mwahhahahahahah!

You wanna come to the beach with me? ;0D

Lisa and Laura said...

Birds scare the crap out of me. Especially pigeons. They're like flying rats.

Solvang Sherrie said...

PJ - You too, huh? These bold birds freak me out! And thanks! I'll look for yours.

Christy - I will NOT got to any beach with you!!

Lisa and Laura - Birds are creepy. My son want a pet bird. Thank God we already have a cat so a bird is out of the question!

Kelly said...

Those are some bold birds!
When we were in Florida, the gulls would just hang around and swoop at a dropped french fry right next to us!

Sarah Laurenson said...

You should try feeding the dolphins at Sea World. The birds dive bomb you from behind and snatch the fish.

Solvang Sherrie said...

Kelly - I get nervous when they swoop. They aren't known for bowel control!

Sarah - Thanks for the tip. I won't be feeding any dolphins at Sea World!

Vivian said...

You are so lucky to have beach weather now! Though the seagulls. Ugh! Seagulls are huge when they're up close. And bold.

I'll go over to check out your indie post!

Lady Glamis said...

*SHUDDERS*

I HATE that movie. Seagulls have always creeped me out because of it. In fact, any large swarm of birds freaks me out. Dumb movie. Well, I guess it's based on some sort of valid truth - the seagulls are scavengers and bullies!

Kelly H-Y said...

Oh my goodness ... love your bird story ... what a riot!

Shelli said...

ha reminds me of the birds in NENO - mine, mine, mine.

PS nice toes :) got the pedi before beach trip!! nice!

thx for taking time to read my chapter today :) Im off to read yours!

Maggie said...

You ought to come eat lunch at the school where I work-the seagulls begin to arrive about 11:45 a.m. when the kindergartners start opening up their lunch bags. The birds hover near careless eaters and also like to dive in the trash cans and yank out the top layer to throw around the campus. Delightful creatures.
Loved your article!

Suzanne Casamento said...

Yikes! Attacked by birds!

I used to go to a restaurant right on the water in Malibu that had an outdoor bar and stools. The birds were so brazen that they'd swoop down and snatch food off our plates. It was unnerving!

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