The price of liberty is eternal vigilance.
–Leonard Henry Courtney (among others)
Leonard may not have been a tuxedo cat, but ours keep his spirit alive.
Who do they guard against? What villains do they seek to warn us against?
You might think it was these guys, but you would be wrong. They don’t come into our yard, and if they’re outside of the fence, Sachiko and Watanuki don’t, you should excuse the expression, give a shit whose yard the deer shit in.
No, the Tuxedoed Terrors sit forthright against a flock of evildoers so fowl even their name causes the homeowners’ association to quake in its collective britches.
What crimes do they commit?
That’s right: turkeywalking. (What, you thought they would stoop to jaywalking?)
Thanksgiving is a week away, a time when the Universe really is out to get you. Assuming you’re a turkey, that is. And yet our local flock remains blissfully paranoia-free.
They continue to roam the streets, staring down–sometimes even blocking–cars and terrorizing the local canines.
According to my sources, the flock is larger than it’s ever been. No doubt that gives them a sense of invulnerability. We’ll see if they still feel the same this time next week…
We were supposed to get the first rain of the year Thursday. Not just any rain, but the beginning of several days of storms, accompanied by wind gusting up to sixty mph.
While we were checking to be sure we had imaginary gas for our non-existent backup generator (the one we don’t have and thus can’t use when the power goes out), the neighbors made it clear they weren’t worried.
The turkeys left their galoshes at home.
And the cats didn’t bring umbrellas to the backyard bowl at dinner time.
Why should anyone worry? It was blue skies and temperatures in the sixties all day. So naturally the feline politics went on as usual.
Hopefully everyone has someplace dry to hole up. For those of you east of the Rockies, I’ll add “warm” to the wish list.
It’s been a while since I talked about the neighborhood turkeys.
They’re still around, but they’ve been less noticeable lately. I think the Toikey de Tutti Toikeys ordered them to back off a little in the name of community relations.
They don’t seem to be traveling in large flocks, filling the street and arguing with drivers as much as they used to. Instead, we get scenes like this:
Yup, it’s the Lone Turkey.
The Lone Turkey isn’t any less aggressive than the flocks were. It took him a good five minutes to cross the street, including a brief stare-down with a driver. He knows he’s a member of a protected species, and he’s quite willing to use that status to his advantage.
It’s worth noting, though, that the driver won the stare-down. He was able to pass the Lone Turkey and continue down the street (much too fast, as usual). Faced with a full pack, he would certainly have had to wait for them to clear the street before he could proceed.
So it’s incremental progress in neighborhood politics. Hopefully the end of the drought–if it ever ends–won’t signal a return of the large flocks.