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Thread: Drew my Handgun, Prepared to Fire...

  1. #1
    Regular Member M-Taliesin's Avatar
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    Drew my Handgun, Prepared to Fire...

    Howdy Folks!
    I crept quietly from the bedroom toward the kitchen with my XDM at low ready. I'd been roused from my slumber by a noise coming from the other end of the house, and I was darn near certain something nefarious was afoot. Moving through the kitchen, I kept my pistol held with a good grip while working my toward the sound, my eyes scanning for any signs of movement. The sound kept coming at intervals. There'd be quite a bit of noise, then quiet for a moment or two before starting right back up. If this was a human being, they must've thought I was out for the day, because they weren't being especially careful about holding down the noise.

    Once I reached the far wall in the living room, I carefully peered around the corner. No signs of anybody, except for that noise that kept coming at intervals. The sound might be coming from the spare room to the left of the hallway, or the bathroom just beyond that, or my den/office at the far end of the hall. To investigate further would require me to move down that hallway.

    Reaching the spare room to my left, I listened at the door which was closed. Nothing from there, but I heard the sound again, coming from further along the hallway. I reached the bathroom door and carefully checked around the corner, but nobody was there. I then felt I was right on top of whatever the source of the noise was as I looked into the office. Nothing there either. Then the noise came again.

    Midway between the spare bedroom door and the bathroom at that end of the house is a cubby that houses our furnace. The noise seemed to be coming from the furnace. I approached it and listened through a lull in the sound. Then it came again. Definately coming from the furnace.

    I holstered my sidearm and went outside. There, on top of a vent from the furnace through the roof, was a brown, speckled wood pecker. He was looking around, then suddenly started pecking at the metal vent hood for all he was worth. It was almost unbelievable how fast he pecked. It sounded nothing like most wood peckers. It was more like a jackhammer. Of all the houses in the city of Aurora, this wood pecker decided to land on mine and peck his little brains out. Worse, he was beating on metal, rather than wood. As I watched him, from somewhere to the north, a second wood pecker was pounding out a response to my visitor. He'd listen for a bit, then peck the snot out of my vent hood, then listen for a response from up the block.

    Attachment 8118

    In the end, I just went back inside feeling somewhat silly for having gotten alarmed only to find a woodpecker beating up my vent hood.

    And that darn bird kept pecking for about another hour!
    I'm not going to take advantage of what would otherwise be a marvelous opportunity to throw a pun in here, possibly getting myself in Dutch with the moderators, but suffice to say that sleep was now off the agenda for the morning!



    Blessings,
    M-Taliesin

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    Regular Member rushcreek2's Avatar
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    This might be just the opening needed to share my own little " Barney Fife " anecdote for the day.

    I'm in Arlington, Texas - just pulled into the handicap parking space at the "Joann" store (women's curios, flowers, crafts, yard goods, and lots of other stuff).

    As I am unloading wife's wheel chair from trunk this "suspicious-looking" 18-20 year old young B/M wearing droopy jeans, a dark brown hoodie even though itwas 80 degrees today( and YES - bright blue under wear) is coming up on my "Six". I make eye-contact in a manner intended to strongly suggest that he should re-route giving me a wide berth. I don't think "person of interest" even noticed my yet to be tucked Glock peeping out of my IWB. He meanders on past us just one vehicle over while stopping to seemingly take inventory of each unattended parked vehicle along his zig-zag route.

    I am looking straight at this dude - who seems strangely oblivous to the fact that anyone may be observing his suspicious behavior. I am standing there looking straight at him with my cell phone set to call the Arlington Pd non-emergency number which I have listed on "contacts". Then this guy proceeds to enter the "Joann" store. Now if you have ever visited one of the "Joann's" you know that there is NOTHING on their shelves that could possible be of interest to this potential "perp".

    People that shop in Joann's are predominantly women, carrying "super - purses ". You know - about the size of a duffle bag and all adorned with sparklies & such. Now I am convinced that this guy was in search of one of those handsome bags. What other conceivable reason for my "suspect" to go into a "Joann's".

    I wheel my wife into her shopping spot, and excuse myself to check out my "suspect". I make a cursory walk-by. Sure enough I find him sitting at a table in the sewing "pattern" section - with this spaced out thousand-yard stare like he is waiting for the bell to ring releasing him from "study-hall period ". Women in proximty to him have this "look" - like uhh.....what is this ... ? Their eyes suggest that they share my suspicions. Another walk-by...and I observe him fixated on spools of thread.

    OK - I call the APD, and relate my observations in detail . Dispatcher ask for a discription of "suspect". I report: Jeans, brown hoodie, and bright blue "Hanes" ( I tell her - I know they are blue because I can see 100 % of them ABOVE his jeans ). She says officers are on the way. I tell her that I will meet the officers outside the entrance. I wait......wait some more......about 30 minutes passes. I step inside and tell the manager at the front (who is aware that I have summoned the PD)that when the officer's arrive - please page me - and I will direct them to "suspect".

    Shortly thereafter the manager approaches me and tells me that he has checked into the situation and has determined that the individual in question is in fact "in the company of a customer ", and that he is a "learning disabled" person. Apparently so. So......I called APD, and cancelled the call for service.

    For a while this morning I thought I was going to have an opportunity to tackle a real live purse-snatcher. It was a false "alarm", but I still think that I acted reasonably , and appropriately.

    You just never know. My intuition could have been correct - but it wasn't this time.

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    Last edited by rushcreek2; 03-12-2012 at 08:03 PM.

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    OK here is my Barney Fife moment. When I first moved from NJ to NC (yeah I am a damn yankee) we moved into a two story apartment. Late one night I awoke to hear definate movement downstairs. The kitchen is in the back of the aparment with a sliding glass door entry into it. As I come down the stairs with my Marlin .22 carbine (didn't have any handguns in 1997, NJ ya know) I see the kitchen light is on and hear more movement. Damn it, here 2 weeks and I gotta shoot some dumb bastard. As I cleared the doorway of the kitchen I had my barrel pointed right at my 3 1/2 year daughter standing in the light of the open refriderator door. She looks up at me and says "I just wanted one beer, just one" while holding up her little finger up indicating one.

    Believe it not, she is 17 now and does not like to drink at all. We still all get a chuckle out of that one.
    Last edited by No hate; 03-12-2012 at 08:28 PM.

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    Regular Member rushcreek2's Avatar
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    No Hate , ( me neither, BTW) your experience had to have turned your hair prematurely WHITE !

    I am not a racist - but I reserve my right to profile and be on guard for "types" that are generally looking for trouble, or opportunities to "earn" from the losses of others. So I will continue to profile.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rushcreek2 View Post
    No Hate , ( me neither, BTW) your experience had to have turned your hair prematurely WHITE !

    I am not a racist - but I reserve my right to profile and be on guard for "types" that are generally looking for trouble, or opportunities to "earn" from the losses of others. So I will continue to profile.
    No grey hairs but I did squat against the wall with my face in my hands doing the "OMG, OMG I almost shot my daughter" thing.

    I think I missed something. Where did the "profiling" comment come from?

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    I would have pulled out my streetsweeper and blasted that bird !

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    Regular Member Anubis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by M-Taliesin View Post
    There, on top of a vent from the furnace through the roof, was a brown, speckled wood pecker.
    I am sure it was a Northern Flicker, relative of woodpeckers. They prefer to hammer on metal ventwork, doing it to make as much noise as possible. This occurs only in the spring, done to attract mates. Once I had 2 of them competing for most noise on my vents.

    Actually, of course, it's better to have them on metal. They would severely damage wooden siding.

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    Pellet gun would have fixed the problem........
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    Quote Originally Posted by ManInBlack View Post
    I want my 30 seconds back.
    +1, lol. Thanks for the story M. Not as interesting as I thought it would be based on the title, but I should have expected it, coming from you
    "When seconds count between living or dying, the police are only minutes away."

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    Regular Member kanekutter05's Avatar
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    Those damn woodpeckers...there's one on my next door neighbors house from time to time. I agree tho...pellet gun fixes that situation real quick lol.

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    Regular Member JamesB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mark-in-texas View Post
    Pellet gun would have fixed the problem........
    Dad had one o' those pesky critters awhile back...

    12- guage worked pretty good too.

  13. #13
    Regular Member MKEgal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mark-in-texas
    Pellet gun would have fixed the problem.
    Not that I'm generally in favor of harming animals that can't do harm, but that was my thought too.
    Of course, if you do more than send it whizzing past to scare him you'll have an injured or dead bird on your roof, and then what?

    My parents used to have a woodpecker that banged on their windows.
    He'd go from window to window banging until he saw a person inside, then sit & look in at them.
    Crazy thing.
    Mom was worried he'd break the glass some day.
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    I had about the same thing happen to me years back I was working midnights and was asleep during the day. I was woken up by a crash in the walk out basement.

    Grabbed my 357 and investigated . I female merganser flew down the wood stove chimmey and was making a racket she must have been looking for a nesting site.

    Got the blood pumping. Caught her in a blanket and released her.

  15. #15
    Regular Member M-Taliesin's Avatar
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    Howdy Folks!
    I may have gotten a rush, thinking I had an intruder in my home or trying to gain access to the house, but I had no quarrel with the woodpecker (or Northern Flicker, it that's what it was) apart from waking me in the morning; a thing I sorta had to do eventually anyhow.

    He banged away steady for about an hour then left of his own volition. I intended him no harm, and didn't need a pellet gun or any other missle to run him off; he eventually departed under his own steam.

    Since he aint been back, I guess he musta got lucky.

    Hopefully, that's the last pecker problem I'll have for awhile!

    Blessings,
    M-Taliesin

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    Quote Originally Posted by rushcreek2 View Post
    Then this guy proceeds to enter the "Joann" store. Now if you have ever visited one of the "Joann's" you know that there is NOTHING on their shelves that could possible be of interest to this potential "perp".
    I love Joann's for their after holiday sales. Particularly Halloween. Picked up a skull form cake pan for Muertos this past year. For fabrics I'll stick with Hancock's. Hobby Lobby is good to get ideas of what's out there, but I stick with the specialty stores for price (Caboose for trains, Hobbytown for rockets). I didn't quite have a Barney Fife moment, but did do a double-take one day going into the Longmont Hobby Lobby when a group of teens in punk style clthes looked prima facie like thugs, but on closer look were regular customers, not even as miscreant as any average group of teens.

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    Campaign Veteran since9's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by M-Taliesin View Post
    I holstered my sidearm and went outside. There, on top of a vent from the furnace through the roof, was a brown, speckled wood pecker. He was looking around, then suddenly started pecking at the metal vent hood for all he was worth. It was almost unbelievable how fast he pecked. It sounded nothing like most wood peckers. It was more like a jackhammer. Of all the houses in the city of Aurora, this wood pecker decided to land on mine and peck his little brains out. Worse, he was beating on metal, rather than wood. As I watched him, from somewhere to the north, a second wood pecker was pounding out a response to my visitor. He'd listen for a bit, then peck the snot out of my vent hood, then listen for a response from up the block.
    Lol, M! "How much wood would a woodpecker peck..." Metal. Unbelievable. My parent's neighbors have a horrendous time with woodpeckers in their cedar-sided home. Something like 21 nests over the last 10 years. Because they're a protected bird they have to wait until the eggs hatch and the nest is abandoned before making repairs. I'm more of a mindset of making ice darts for use in my blowgun...
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