orlando has vulture problems
January 31, 2001 8:41 AM   Subscribe

orlando has vulture problems
posted by bliss322 (10 comments total)
Please tell me that's not journalism. It reads as if it were written for a high school newspaper -- actually, it reads as if it were written by someone attempting to be on a high school newspaper but failed because the journalism teacher could tell what a horrible piece of journalism this is. The tone is so overtly juvenile, using terms like "grossed out" (which I'm not sure is even used in high school anymore) and cartoonishly referring to "chubby Chihuahuas," that I wonder what the editors at that newspaper are doing, because it certainly isn't editing.

On the other hand, maybe the journalism I was taught is no longer acceptible and this friendly, folksy, gaggingly cute prose is what passes for news writing today.
posted by honkzilla at 9:22 AM on January 31, 2001

Like it needs to be said, but vultures are disgusting. When I'm at home during the summer, I go jogging around the neighborhood. One day I was jogging up a hill and saw two big black birds. When I got closer, I saw their little red heads picking at a dead animal. I was so scared; I thought they were going to fly at me and eat me cuz they were staring at me like I was lunch. I was kinda confused because I live in New Jersey and, well, that's not a place you usually see vultures.

Officials installed a device in 1999 that screeched every 45 seconds -- simulating the cry of a dying buzzard.
Why would this make the vultures leave? They eat dead flesh. I'm not sure they eat their own kind, but I wouldn't be surprised.
posted by evilmaryellen at 9:29 AM on January 31, 2001

"Valuable for removal of disease-causing carrion and garbage"

They probably think we're pretty damned ugly, too.

posted by mimi at 9:48 AM on January 31, 2001

Honk, I didn't find anything in the article that diverged greatly from feature journalism, which this obviously is. You've heard of feature journalism? They mention that in school? Jeez.

I agree it's too cutesy by half, but then I prefer my humor dry.
posted by dhartung at 9:51 AM on January 31, 2001

"Let us praise the noble turkey vulture: No one envies him; he harms nobody; and he contemplates our little world from a most serene and noble height." --Edward Abbey

Turkey vultures are the only species that benefited from the creation of the Interstate Highway system in the U.S. Net increase in roadkill, net increase in vultures.

By the way, they can be a sign of good luck. I learned this rhyme from Kathryn Windham Tucker for counting them:
One for sorrow, Two for joy,
Three brings letters, Four, a boy;
Five for silver, Six for gold,
Seven for a secret that's never been told.

I figure if you see eight, there's probably something dead nearby, or a major updraft.
All hail the noble turkey vulture.
posted by Ereneta at 10:39 AM on January 31, 2001

I am confused. When I saw the lead to this piece, I thought it was a reference to the earlier link about a guy from Jersey, a Jews for Jesus fellow, who was to build a biblical theme Park. Could there be a connection between Orlando theme parks and vultures. Or since vultures munch on the dead, to the many elderly that flock to that area? As for scavenger birds in Jersey.....
posted by Postroad at 10:58 AM on January 31, 2001

Actually, there is a decent vulture (black and turkey) population in New Jersey. If you are at all interested in birds of prey, by all means hie thee to The Raptor Trust in Millington. It is one of the premiere oganizations for the rehabilitations of birds of prey.
posted by plinth at 1:27 PM on January 31, 2001

Ah, Millington. My neck of the woods.
posted by evilmaryellen at 2:13 PM on January 31, 2001

Ereneta - that's also traditionally a rhyme for counting crows. In addition, the band Counting Crows has a song called "A murder of one" whose lyrics go "One for sorrow, two for joy - three for girls and four for boys, five silver six for gold, seven for a secret never to be told..."

posted by annathea at 2:34 PM on January 31, 2001

"...talons that could carry away a chubby Chihuahua..."

...a dead and rotting one, that is. If the vulture waited its turn, for the hyenas fo finish with the carcass.

posted by dfowler at 8:35 PM on January 31, 2001

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