I am a pacifist by nature and, for over 35 years, a vegetarian by choice. I capture spiders in jars to remove them from our house. And I raise a fly swatter reluctantly and with a whispered apology.
So I am shocked to feel so violently disposed towards one of nature's feathered creatures. To wit, the suburban blight commonly known as crows.
I rarely find myself in such an unharmonious relationship with the natural world. But lately it seems as though there is no peace or quiet -- there is almost always some level of cacophonous cawing, in the near or distant background.
The crows disrupt my early morning slumber and my late afternoon naps. They intrude upon my backyard cloud-gazing and backyard barbecues. They swoop down menacingly or gather on rooftops, where they march along the shingles like invading stormtroopers.
I have researched how to scare the crows away and it seems that the smell of gunpowder may be the most effective technique. So, on New Year's Eve, I asked our host if I could take home the left-over noisemakers. I chased the crows for months, but rarely could get out the door quickly enough to employ the miniature explosives. On the infrequent occasions when I succeeded, the crows merely relocated across the street -- well within my auditory ambit.