It's not fun being attacked by a big bird. I know. I was. I deserved it. Seems I was 1 or 2 years old when I decided to stomp some baby chicks at our dairy. I don't know if I injured any. They're pretty quick, after all. But I did incur their mother's wrath. In Portuguese, a mother hen is called, phonetically speaking, a "ga-leen-a shocka." Before you could say, Kentucky Fried Chicken, that ga-leen-a shocka was all over me. Mom fondly recalls the image of me on my belly pounding my fists on the ground and crying, with the mother hen on my back, pecking my head. Why am I telling you this? The tiny North Idaho town of Coolin on Priest Lake has a big bird problem. Seems a turkey with a 'tude is driving off little kids and their parents from a new playground area. Blogger Pecky Cox/As the Lake Churns describes the turkey as "big, ugly and aggressive. The turkey chases, irritates and endangers the youngsters who would like to enjoy the facilities." Reportedly, the turkey chased a grandmother and her granddaughter back into their car moments after they arrived at the park. Also, the turkey is the prime suspect in a hit-and-flap bicycle crash on East Side Road that resulted in a Coolin resident landing in the hospital with significant injuries to his head and face. Pecky's solution to the problem? "If the animal rights proponents and husbandry folks who enjoy the cuteness of this short-lived nuisance really love it," warns Pecky, "they might want to keep it out of the playground, or (we) may do a big dinner with all the trimmings." Drumstick, anyone?
D.F. Oliveria started Huckleberries Online on Feb. 16, 2004. Oliveria's Sunday print Huckleberries is a past winner of the national Herb Caen Memorial Column contest.