Agrippa Comes With His Boys

Yesterday, I decide to catch up on some reading while peace presided over the neighborhood and didn’t want to have close the living room blinds to sit in the reading chair; which as a side, is the only way to block out bird activity and keep them from constantly flying by to look inside. I chose the bedroom rather than the spare room, and listen to the occasional pellet drop on the skylight and little else. Then Agrippa comes with his boys. Like a motherfucker on sounding the war cry, he came to make a fucking statement. The book fell from my hands when, outside my bedroom sliding doors, the NoHo crows gathered en masse. I was tempted to creep over and peek through the closed blinds, but didn’t want to encourage this unprecedented sneak attack. I listened, almost frightened, to the hard cawing of at least 20 crows grow louder every passing moment. I didn’t grab my phone to make a recording like an idiot. Movement seemed unwise. I wondered how many were out there and what the fuck had happened?

As of now the corvid problem has arrived at a new level of crazy; the entangled relations of the Venice crows and I, the Venice crows v.s NoHo ravens, and the NoHo ravens hating on me, whom, I’m certain, think I’m part of the crow family, has made a notable shift.  I’m astonished how the mind’s of these birds work. Obviously I can’t see everything going on above the apartment, but I know plans are being hatched and orders given. I’m gifted and cursed with acute hearing; almost bird level of hearing, not quite dog, but definitely bird levels of selective hearing. A strange and often regrettable ability, if I make the effort, to pick out individual sounds from extraneous audio heard by the naked ear. This battle is one I’m uncertain of its resolve. I need help, or move from this apartment and out of North Hollywood. Even moving to a new location, I suspect, is without guarantee of full closure and an end to the drama. I have one precious reprieve; flying out of LA and off to Ontario Canada every few months to see family and relish the peace.

The sea of hate I swim daily is calm compared to prior weeks. The air strike campaign loosened slightly and the dogs next door bark less, but I’m vigilant and on guard for the next attack.  I think the owners of the adjoining property have no choice but to keep li’l yappy Lamb chop inside.  Stupid me to think new ways of torment weren’t being cooked up on the roof of the building by Henry and Bella. I have another theory centered on the Thursday routine; a day of the week the Venice crows have claimed and me, at the crack of dawn, included.

For 10 solid minutes, I listened to the raucous caws aimed to demonstrate power in numbers over a handful of ravens. The noise grew intense. All other sounds blotted out and I wondered at once if Agrippa had been doing his own plotting as of late. Had he put the word out, cashed in a few favors, and said, “Today’s the day my brothers. The NoHo crow clan make history!”? Is this what fucking happened!? Of course, I hear Agrippa first. Every crow and raven caw has a distinct timber and strength, and to forget or mistake his call, even if I try, is impossible.

The clan slowly release its grip on a struggling little corner of the valley, signaled by a slow dwindle of caws. Relieved and drained by the experience, I hear Agrippa, the last and final crow, call to me as if to say, “Jesus! Don’t you see what I just did here!? I did that!”. In my heart I wanted to step out onto the balcony and applaud loudly. If I were anywhere but here, I’d happily reply with a few caws of my own. Today, I ponder what provoked the attack and ask myself if Henry and Bella had crossed a line enacting their latest and greatest scheme.