Death Geese

I will admit, I have made some slanderous statements about geese in this blog (see All in the Family). However, I maintain that I was justified in calling them a$$holes. And if you do not already feel this way, I would like to tell you a story.

My sister has always been afraid of geese. If you grew up in or near Monterey, California, and specifically Lake El Estero, you may understand this. When she was a child, she was eating a sandwich there, and a goose bit her and took her sandwich away.

Not having fully experienced goose wrath, I didn’t used to understand this fear of geese. That is, I didn’t understand until…the day of the Death Geese.

That day, when my sister and I were both somewhere in the teen years, we decided to go to the McDonalds near Lake El Estero (which is now shiny and fancy, but which used to be a dump), and then bring our food to the lakeside to have a picnic. I had a good sister, and we did a lot of fun things like this.

We ordered something–I’ll be honest, it was probably Happy Meals. I cannot say for sure, because the food is not what stuck with me from that day, unless you count the cholesterol that is still clogging my arteries. Because that’s probably still there. And yet I digress.

We were driving my mom’s tiny white Ford Escort, which was officially the lamest car in the history of the automobile. It was pretty embarrassing.

Crappiest Car Ever™

Crappiest Car Ever™

What is pertinent to this story, however, was the fact that it was a really small car. You were kind of sitting on the ground when you rode in it.

We parked the lame-mobile around the corner from Dennis the Menace Park, and selected a picnic table. It was foggy, but otherwise a nice day. We were happy about our french fries. We were happy about our picnic.

For a minute, at least.

And then:

Run Awaaaaaay!

Run Awaaaaaay!

Suddenly, an ugly gang of threatening, hissing geese descended upon us. Now, Wikipedia claims that geese weigh up to 22 pounds. But I’m pretty sure these puppies weighed at least 75. A particularly scrawny child, I rapidly assessed them as they approached and decided that we were the same size, but they were meaner. And they were running. And they wanted my french fries.

With much screaming and scrambling, we grabbed as much of our food as we could and ran back to the Escort. We leaped in with the pack of geese on our tails and narrowly managed to shut the doors before they had a chance to get in too.

But we had made a big error in judgment. We had left the windows open. The F-ing geese were as tall as the windows, and they were trying to get at us through the windows. Let me tell you, they really wanted those french fries.

Don't Let Them Kill Me!

Don’t Let Them Kill Me!

In true 1980s car fashion, the Escort had crank-up windows, and we threw ourselves into trying to get the danged things shut without snagging a goose neck. It was like the Hitchcock movie, The Birds, only instead of pigeons, these were 75-pound, carnivorous, hissing geese trying to kill us. And did I mention that that movie was based on an event that happened RIGHT NEAR HERE?

Once the windows were shut, we sat there panting, while they hissed through the windows and made plenty of eye contact. I swear, their eyes were blue. I don’t know why. I saw my demise in those enraged geese’s eyes.

We managed to choke down the rest of the food, and we sat and talked in our car surrounded by geese. And finally–they went away. The nightmare was over. My sister suggested that I get out and throw our trash away. You can probably see where this is going.

I opened the car door, trash in hand.

Like a flash! The pack of geese came hurtling around from behind the car, where they had been WAITING FOR ME. They were fast, and I darted back into the car and slammed the door. They resumed their hissing through the windows. We sat there until they really did seem to have gone. We did not try to throw away our trash. We did not ensure none of them were behind the car. We just left, and lived to eat another french fry.

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