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The short, unique life of Zombie Pidge
January 6, 2012 4:58 PM   Subscribe

Step 1: Compose your post to MetaFilter: Description: An inspirational Holiday Tale from Peter Watts. Step 2: Justify using the words "inspirational", "holiday", and "Peter Watts" in the same sentence: I'm grading on a curve. Step 3: Do you want to warn us about any pictures? Yes, I'm warning you. (Remember last time?) Seriously, some animal lovers may want to skip this.
posted by maudlin (18 comments total) 11 users marked this as a favorite

 
That man is a magnet for weirdness.
posted by AdamCSnider at 5:25 PM on January 6, 2012 [2 favorites]


FTA: (emphasis mine)
I got him home, set him up in the walk-in closet we generally use for such things. (The last pigeon we had in there had some kind of neurological disorder ... )
The man has a dying-pigeon closet.
posted by lekvar at 5:29 PM on January 6, 2012 [7 favorites]


. ZP
posted by Artw at 5:32 PM on January 6, 2012


The man has a dying-pigeon closet.

"The last pigeon we had in there had some kind of neurological disorder; lasted a couple of weeks and died in mid-spasm, spraying an arc of birdseed across Caitlin’s shoes"

Bizarre. Where does he find them all? It's not just the cats bringing them in.
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 5:35 PM on January 6, 2012


I had dinner with him when I was last in Toronto. It was a perfectly normal meal. I SWEAR.
posted by jscalzi at 5:35 PM on January 6, 2012 [4 favorites]


It's pretty easy to find dying pigeons in Toronto, unfortunately. I do not have nor have I ever had a dying pigeon closet, but I did once beg a box from a local produce store, call Animal Control, and wait on the side of Spadina for over an hour until someone arrived to pick up a mangled pigeon that had been hit by a car.
posted by maudlin at 5:39 PM on January 6, 2012


That’s it. That’s my inspirational Holiday Tale. If it doesn’t do it for you, there’s plenty of other blogs and twits out there guaranteed to induce diabetes and swamp you in saccharine, full to the gorge with wishes of peace and love and good fuzzy-wuzzy feelings. But I used to be a biologist before I became a professional liar, and I’m telling you: this was a fucking miracle. Or maybe it’s just life.
I fucking love Peter Watts.
posted by pts at 5:43 PM on January 6, 2012 [4 favorites]


Where does he find them all?

Well, to be perfectly honest, my household is very similar, in that we may or may not be assisting wounded animals at any given time. It's not my idea of a good time, but it's important to my SO. But like with so many other things, you see animals that need help everywhere once you start paying attention. It probably helps if you walk more than you drive.

The most recent beasties were a couple of young crows, too young to fly, who had managed to fall out of their nest and ended up being abandoned by their parents. They were dehydrated and malnourished, and they only lasted a day, but, as Mr. Watts says, at least they passed away in some measure of comfort.

We don't have a designated closet though.
posted by lekvar at 5:46 PM on January 6, 2012 [1 favorite]


Just wait til Martha Stewart hops on the Dying Pigeon Closet craze. It'll be all ecru with lingonberry accents and " just right " wicker containers.
posted by The Whelk at 5:52 PM on January 6, 2012 [1 favorite]


That reminds me of the cat who wouldn't die (with a happy ending! I promise!).

I wonder what the percentage of wounded pigeons/small birds in cities are caused by household cats - a neck wound like that of Zombie Pidge couldn't be caused by raccoons, could it?
posted by zennish at 6:05 PM on January 6, 2012


Does Peter Watts ever write anything that doesn't have the subtext of "THE WORLD IS A BUTT AND EVERYONE IN IT IS A BUTT SO KILL YOURSELF NOW AND BEAT THE RUSH"?
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 6:31 PM on January 6, 2012


That man is a magnet for weirdness.

I would bet that both CSIS and the RCMP have substantial divisions devoted entirely to ensuring that Peter Watts and James Nicoll are never, under any circumstances, within 100 meters of each other.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 6:34 PM on January 6, 2012 [3 favorites]


Does Peter Watts ever write anything that doesn't have the subtext of "THE WORLD IS A BUTT AND EVERYONE IN IT IS A BUTT SO KILL YOURSELF NOW AND BEAT THE RUSH"?

Obviously yes, he said he was a professional liar!
posted by Potomac Avenue at 10:56 PM on January 6, 2012


Zombie pigeons are not that uncommon (no photos, self link)
posted by romakimmy at 3:31 AM on January 7, 2012


Does Peter Watts ever write anything that doesn't have the subtext of "THE WORLD IS A BUTT AND EVERYONE IN IT IS A BUTT SO KILL YOURSELF NOW AND BEAT THE RUSH"?

I donaated via his PayPal link and he sent me a nice thank you email in response. But I've never been great at subtext and there might have been an undertone of 'you fool! I'm going to spend your money on perfecting my sadistic torture dungeon! A-bwah-haha-haha!" that I just missed.
posted by Infinite Jest at 3:42 AM on January 7, 2012


> had managed to fall out of their nest and ended up being abandoned by their parents.

Have you watched Attenborough's Life of Birds? The fledglings were probably shoved out of the nest so the parents could concentrate resources on their best prospect. Life is so cruel.
posted by bukvich at 5:20 AM on January 7, 2012


Where does he find them all?

All the same places you don't. Once you learn to see the broken and the mangled, you never learn to stop. They are everywhere. Birds that have died of window strike, small mammals frozen to death, little lizards half eaten by predators, ants swarming over them and tearing them apart one picogram at a time.

The small dead are as hard to spot as the small living. Harder, because they don't move, the don't make birdsong anymore and they don't leave little footprints in the dust. Luckily if you can spot one you can generally find all the little miracles, too, the little things living on the edge of our big urban industrial sprawls.
posted by Jilder at 7:19 AM on January 7, 2012 [5 favorites]


Another animal-finding technique for the urban walker - the domesticated dog.

Also, I'd the semi-feral or outdoor cars who hang out on your street are looking at something, that something is another cat or beastie of some sort.

They're everywhere, even in bad weather.
posted by Lesser Shrew at 7:57 AM on January 7, 2012


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