Shutting Down the Birds

Posted: April 29, 2015 in Tim Braun
Tags: , , , , ,

They never stop. Ever. I mean…..EVER.  JUST MAKE IT STOP!!!!!


Meet my Great-Great-Great-Great-Grandfather Marmaduke Dallas. For once I’m not making something up, he really is my Great times four Grandfather. He was a fine upstanding gentleman, one of the first teachers in the Missouri territory when he went out there in the 1840’s. His sons fought nobly in the Great Conflict in the early 1860’s. All in all, a tremendous example for his entire lineage. However – if you look at the picture you may note onear_trumpete thing. It’s not the spiffy bow tie – it’s not the perfectly coiffed beard and hair. So what could it be? Hmmmm. WAIT! It’s that two-foot long trumpet sticking out of his ear, isn’t it? YEP! For all of his well-coiffedness and zippy dressedness, Marmaduke was stone cold deaf. In his later years he couldn’t hear a lick, not even with the thoroughly medically-approved use of the aforementioned ear trumpet. That was Marmaduke’s legacy to his children and generations thereafter – the complete and total inability to hear what the heck was going on around you.


Of course I didn’t know Marmaduke personally – I met him virtually through my Grandmother, who in later years was stone cold deaf as well. So what we have here is a genuine trait that has been passed through generations of my family from at LEAST the 1840’s. That would be REALLY cool and quite moving if it were a positive trait, however if one of your traits that is passed down through all time is actually removing one of your senses, it tends to not be quite as positive.

So I watched my Grandma slowly lose her hearing, then I watched my Mother…. and THEN EVEN MY FATHER! I don’t know how exactly they passed the negative trait to each other – my assumption is that my father just felt left out, so he wanted to join the rest of the gang. Anyway, both of my parents got hearing aids in their later years, and my brother followed suit a few years ago as well.


So you know where that leaves us. My hearing has slowly been going the way of the dodo. Several years of flying light airplanes and bombing the Ramones into my eardrums couldn’t have helped, but I truly believe that I was destined for this near-deafness no matter what. So after my hearing continued to get progressively worse over the last year, I finally bit the bullet. My family was tired of my standard response of ‘huh?’ and I was tired of not hearing a single word in any meeting I was cursed to sit in. Welcome to the world of hearing aids – stay for a while and get comfortable.

It’s a whole new world. I can now hear my family talk to me. I can hear the TV at volumes approaching normal human level. And get this – these hearing aids are BLUETOOTH-EQUIPPED. So now instead of not being able to hear at meetings because I can’t HEAR…now I’m not able to hear at meetings because I’m SECRETLY PLAYING MUSIC FROM MY IPOD into my ears during the meeting! Technology is a wonderful thing – and since everyone is just used to me not talking or seeming to care during a meeting, they won’t notice a thing. Genius.

jimBut there are two drawbacks. First, the pants. The day I got the hearing aids I was wearing a pair of pants that to the best of my knowledge had remained completely silent through multiple wearings. I mean – they were pants. They SHOULD be silent. Imagine my surprise when I discovered that I was swishing a path down the hallway that the Queen of England would have been proud of.  They are now on eBay if anyone needs the link to a slightly used, slightly swishy pair of trousers.

The other drawback is the stupid birds. Did you know that birds actually sing ALL THE DAMN TIME? I mean they NEVER stop. I went out to my truck to go to work this morning and was literally assaulted by 15 birds all whistling – or doing whatever stupid birds do to make stupid noise –  merrily to me. I actually had to cover my ears and scream at the wildlife at 6:00 stupid a.m.

Honestly, I’ve had a bone to pick with birds for years. Ever since I saw the single scariest movie ever as a kid. Yep – even scarier than the Flying Monkeys in Wizard of Oz. Mr. Hitchcock – I hate you.


I don’t know how you people got along with that racket going on all the time. Shouldn’t someone say something to the BASTARDS (Bird Association Seemingly Testing A Really Difficult Situation) in charge of this ruckus? It needs to be stopped right now in its tracks. They are a public menace and should be required to be silenced until at least 8:00am.

The birds, not the BASTARDS.  OK, both.

  1. Carrie Rubin says:

    Your ears, my eyes. Hey, at least we still have our senses of humor, right? That oughtta keep us from getting flattened in the street by a bus we don’t see or hear. Or at least leave us smiling when we’re squashed.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Constantly having to repeat myself to Himself has rendered me deaf. (That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.) So now we both complain about mumbling.

    Also, why on earth did you have your hearing aids in just to go outside at 6.00am??? You don’t have to insert those things until you actually want to listen to something!


  3. writerinsoul says:

    Oh Tim, it’s happy, sexy, bird time now, so they’re extra rambunctious. They settle down more later, such as when they are frozen to trees.

    I’ve heard that people who’ve gained hearing who never had it, feel overwhelmed by all the noisy chaos bombarding them.


  4. David says:

    Welcome to the club! Wait until you open a bag of potato chips! Couple of historical glitches tho – bro was actually first in the immediate family, then mom, then dad. And isn’t that picture actually Granville? Same good story tho…

    Liked by 1 person

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