I bike into work on most days because its cheaper than driving my car, reduces my carbon footprint, and keeps me from blowing up into a giant fat person. That being said, one of my favorite things about riding my bike is being able to take in a lot more of my surroundings while I’m riding around. Sometimes this is good, sometimes this is bad. Other times, like this morning, its fucking disturbing and forever alters the way I perceive the world.
The short version of the story goes like this. Today, I saw two crows gang up and murder another crow by positioning it on the street in front of oncoming traffic.
So, here’s the longer version. I was biking down the street when I heard this loud “cahwing” from trees above. Then three birds fall out of a tree, right into a street. I had been riding in front of traffic, so all the cars were behind me. I began thinking, “man, if those birds don’t move, they are going to get hit by a car. Don’t they know they are in the street.” Then I realize that the two birds were actually attacking the third bird, and the bird on the bottom looked upset. A few seconds latter, the two birds fly off the third, and it’s just lying there, obviously hurt and pretty pissed off for being shoved into the street. Then a Cadillac runs over him! Holy shit! That wasn’t a coincidence. Those other two birds placed the other right in front of the car tire knowing full well that a car was going to hit him. Now, I know that animals rummage through our garbage, or swim in our pools, or occasionally are violated sexually in towns only tens of miles away from Seattle, but I have never once seen an animal use human technology to kill another animal. This is crazy!
So, this is really fucked up and for some reason I’m having a hard time dealing with it. It kind of rocks my whole perspective of the animal kingdom. Now when I see roadkill I’m going to have to ask if it was a suicide or homicide? I mean, if crows are plotting to get other crows run over, what else are they thinking? When pigeons shit on my car, do they do it because they really had to go or because they openly hate Volkswagens? Does the woodpecker who is trying to get into my chimney do it not because he is stupid, but knows its the loudest way to wake me up at 6am? Ok, maybe it’s just birds. Maybe birds are the problem. Wait, when did it become me against the birds. We’re still just dealing with crow on crow violence. I guess that’s ok. I’m not a crow.
Still, it makes you wonder. Was the flight that ended up in the Hudson a coincidence, or like the avian equivalent of a Jamestown massacre for some crazy bird cult? Ya…