Friday, April 8, 2011

Bird Killer

A couple of years ago Michele started reading a book about square foot gardening. She wanted me to buy a bunch of lumber and build boxes per the author's recommendations. Being argumentative, inventive, unconventional and not much of a carpenter, I told her I would build some but they would be out of metal. She gave me the ole daily look that said I do not believe you and an additional look that said But the square foot gardening author didn't say to do it that way! I gave her the daily look that said I'm going to do it anyway. I did and here are some pics of our first years production.

We laid a little brick and gravel around the edges and as you can see on the left, we planted a few weeds just to give it a more natural look

Getting started takes a little money because you have to buy several different compost, magic ingredients and nutrients according to the book.

I have to admit it was more fun to work in the square foot area than out in our regular garden. It turned out, once we worked out the details, to be a boon to our togetherness. Weeds aren't such a problem and all the plants are separated into individual squares.

We fabricated the boxes and powder coated them. I think I penciled it out and figured I could sell them for about the same price as it would cost to make them out of wood and they could be assembled a lot faster and easier. With the powder coating they've lasted well for the last three years. I toyed with the idea of building them and selling them in an easy-to-assemble kit but then I decided not to after realizing I would probably get the same response from the boxes as my blog has produced. So, like the blog, I guess they'll suffice for my own enjoyment.

So that was one of Michele's projects that worked. Let me tell you about one that didn't.

A couple of weeks ago she told me she wanted me to make her a big long squeegee so she could wash our front windows that are 10 or 12 feet up in the air. I saw an opportunity and told her that wasn't necessary. I have an old rickety ladder that I've had to glue back together several times.  I told her she could use that. She asked if I could do the job but I told her I was busy that day. She asked what day? I said the day you're going to clean the windows.

It ended up that she didn't buy my ladder idea. So I fixed her a squeegee that goes tall enough to do the windows.

So she cleaned the 3 big windows. All of a sudden she is a serial bird killer. We've lived here about 30 years and have never had a problem with birds flying into the windows. Now, they are crashing head first into the glass in record numbers. Today alone I've heard 6 bird strikes.

This is not good. They litter our lawn and make a big feathery mess when we mow the grass. The glass is so clean the birds must think Michele removed the glass and they now have a free fly zone into our home. They don't realize their mistake until their flight gets permanently canceled at the window sill.

I'm thinking of throwing a few gobs of mud at the windows and sawing up the extendable squeegee. Then I could put the ladder out so she could clean the mud off the glass. If a high-placed rung happened to break, well, you might say I killed one bird with one ladder, I mean two birds with one stone.

Every time a bird hits, I tell Michele she cleaned the window a little too clean. She counters that the window still isn't all that clean. When I agree, I get a look that's about as dirty as the window's going to be after I mud it.

I'm getting the ladder out where it will be ready for use by the bird killer.


Chelsea said...

How much are the garden boxes for sale for?

Meg said...

There have been other instances of birds suffering for the cause of our clean windows....don't you remember the time the quail flew into the kitchen window and Will cooked it up and ate it?

Meg said...

Oh oops I wrote that before I read Will's letter....great (and traumatized) minds think alike.