One Man's Story Of His Life On (And Off) The Rails
Monday, November 20, 2006
Yesterday, I saw my first bald eagle. It was roosting in a tree that stands behind the church parsonage, which in turn stands next to the church where we were attending service. The reverend told the Sunday school kids that he discovered the eagle while raking leaves on Saturday. He then suggested that after service, everybody go next door and investigate the bird which was still sitting sentinel on a tree limb. Being a big kid myself, I was one of the first out the door. I was a little disappointed that the eagle didn’t have a white head and I speculated that it was wearing a toupee, or maybe it was using "Grecian formula" or "Just for Eagles". One of the sixth grade boys seemed disgusted by these comments. “It’s only two years old,” he explained, “its head hasn’t turned white yet.”
When we walked closer to the tree, we noticed that the eagle had a squirrel trapped in its talons. The squirrel’s fuzzy tail swayed in the breeze as the eagle eagerly ripped it to shreds with its enormous beak. The boys watched in amazement as the bird disemboweled its prey. The girls, on the other hand, thought it disgusting. I was with the girls on this one.
Watching this majestic eagle, made me think of how wrong Benjamin Franklin was when he petitioned to have the turkey, not the eagle, be our national symbol. Thoughts of turkey then turned to memories of kindergarten and my beautiful young teacher, Miss Flanagan. This was the song she taught us at Union School, November 1967: Timothy Turkey
Why do you cry?
Boo Hoo Hoo Timothy Turkey
I’ll tell you why
Boo Hoo Hoo
Thanksgiving is coming They’ll Chop off your head(We emphasized this last line by making a slashing hand movement across our throats) And if you don’t hide
Then soon you'll be dead
Boo Hoo Hoo
I don’t think I ate much turkey that year.