Friday, January 7, 2011

Was Chicken Little prescient?

With the recent spate of birds deaths around the world, it appears Chicken Little was on to something. The so-called "aflockalypse" of the last couple of weeks has the experts scrambling for explanations. Most ornithologists say that these mass deaths are rare but not unprecedented. Citing anything from weather and fireworks to changes in the earths magnetic fields, these zoologists say "not to worry". Apparently these aberrations are akin to the occasional beaching of whales. Those events are generally blamed on factors such as illness, or disorientation caused by extra noise in the oceans, from shipping or oil and gas drilling. Frankly, I think it's George Bush's fault because he doesn't care about the whales, but I digress.

One expert postulated that lightning in the area startled the birds who then flew into buildings, noting that other than raptors, birds do have notoriously bad eyesight. However, slowly but surely human causes crept into the discussion. Any kind of manufacturing plants, especially chemical, remotely near these incidents were pointed out. And then, of course, the old standbys, pollution and climate change made their inevitable appearance on the likely causes list.

Sorry, but my fears are not put to rest with their intellectual mumbo-jumbo. I know what is causing this. The sky is actually falling. Tiny patches of the sky are falling and as they gather speed and more air molecules, they bring the birds down with them. You know, much like a big snowball can be made from rolling a small one around. Have you ever noticed that as adults we discover that there really is no Santa Claus or Easter Bunny or Tooth Fairy. But has anyone ever discredited Chicken Little? No. He just kind of slipped into the recesses of our collective subconscious as some over-sexed fowl who was trying to impress Henny Penny with a trumped up story about the sky hitting him on the head. Who among us even gave a second thought to the fact that the acorn had to have been forced to fall by something?

The jury is still out on what is causing these incidents. But the next time you think a trip to Colonel Sanders is a good idea, think of that little fella who tried to warn all mankind so we could get a leg up. I'll keep you abreast of the outcome.

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