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Probably The Sort Of Thing That Gave Alfred Hitchcock That Whole Idea

May 11, 2006

This was going to be an entry about redecorating, and how sometimes I make proclamations that land me in trouble, or worse, that force me to do work, but, people! Listen, things have changed dramatically in the last six minutes! Now, it is going to be an entry that is about proclamations and redecorating, but which is also about the feathered spawn of Satan currently taking over my backyard, because, you guys? I was just physically attacked. By birds. Small ones. What the HELL?

Seriously! I...birds! They're actually trying to get in through the screens right now. I am not exaggerating. Here are the basic facts, which I will lay out for you:

(1) There are birds.
(2) They want to kill me.
(3) They are everywhere.

I am...actually, okay, yes, I am kind of freaking out. Maybe someone needs to call 911? If you happen to mention pterodactyls somewhere in the conversation, that would be fine.

But, so, attacking birds are now on the menu for this evening's entry, but first: proclamations/redecorating/my big ass idea. Okay, short version, so we can talk about these devil birds before they successfully make their way inside and peck out my eyeballs:

Basically, Dukay and I like to proclaim things. We are a proclaiming kind of people. We do not make important proclamations; our proclamations have never emancipated anyone, for example, in the style of Lincoln. The dogs might wish that our proclamations would emancipate them, thereby freeing them from a life in which they are occasionally expected to wear Cabbage Patch Kid Clothes (oh, don't call the ASPCA! It's cute!) and where they are not provided a steady diet of (a) ham (b) kitten and (c) Milky Way Bars, despite their most fervent desires, but that is too bad for them. This is their sad, brown fate.

And, we don't do it often, but when we do make proclamations involving the dogs, it is usually along the lines of "I hereby proclaim that I am going to get these itty bitty pink Cabbage Patch Kid shoes on Pugsley's feet, or die trying!" Usually when the dogs hear a proclamation coming, they flee the premises.

But, anyway. So, our proclamations tend to be kind of boring. I have proclaimed that no episode of Full House will ever be shown on any television set that I own, and Dukay has proclaimed that we will never again order from the Chinese restaurant that serves staple chicken, and so on.

Fortunately, these are not very difficult proclamations to keep. I am not too likely to be overwhelmed with the urge to see the softer side of Uncle Jesse (now with even more acid wash!). I am also not too likely to revisit the establishment that accused Dukay of planting a staple in his entree. So these things work out well for everyone. Occasionally, however, I am an idiot, and I make a proclamation that involves working. Working! LABOR. And, besides being a people who make a lot of proclamations, Dukay and I are also a people who are lazy. We are a people who value the couch, is what I am getting at. Consequently, the "working" kind of proclamations suck very much.

But, unfortuantely, I sometimes forget this. And about a week and a half ago, I was entertaining some friends, and maybe it was the wine (it was probably the wine), but for some reason, I had this moment of clarity, and it dawned on me that my table? My very blue coffee table, which I have described here before? This one, that is almost terrifying in its earnest, passionate blueness?

Holy hell, is that blue!

...that one? I realized that, people! That coffee table really matches nothing in this room. I bet it is lonely! It is alienated. I feel for this coffee table, and also, it occurs to me that I kind of appreciate it when things in one's decor match, and so, for Spring and Summer, I hereby proclaim that I am going to: paint that wall BLUE!

...Well. You can imagine how THAT went over! HA HA!

Um. Or...well, it -- okay, so I said that, I made my Proclamation, only, you know. Nobody cared. At all. Instead, everyone (those who were actually listening, and this does not include Dukay) said, "Huh. Sounds good!" and promptly returned to their cocktails.

But let's ignore that reality, and instead, pretend that all of my guests were immediately shocked, and that people gasped and clutched their chests and stammered, "No! NO! You MUSTN'T!" but I bravely soldiered on, and insisted that once I've made a proclamation, people, I stand by my word! Now, again: did not actually happen, but for purposes of why I ended up being all proud of myself, sometimes we need to embellish. "Embellish", in this case, meaning "lie."

So, there I was, under all that pressure to perform in the face of overwhelming adversity. I bought the paint, and I used a roll of blue tape to mark off the wall, and I got a dropcloth and a bucket (in retrospect, I still haven't figured out what the bucket was for; I did stand on it, briefly, but I kind of doubt that was the intended use), and some brushes and rollers, and off I went to make a wall blue. I figured that, because it was just one wall, and the wall also contained a fireplace (meaning less surface area, according to geometry), the whole job would go quickly. I was thinking somewhere around the ballpark of, oh. Thirteen seconds. Then, wine!

But that is the thing about painting. There is the fantasy of how it is going to change a room, and how easy it will be. And then there is the reality of what actually happens when the forces of paint, four dogs, and Me actually collide in an enclosed space with white wood floors and (I later learned) absolutely no paper towels left in the whole damn house. You can probably already see how fantasy and reality would differ in this scenario, but I will lay it out for you:


I paint for thirteen seconds. The color is lovely and glorious and, actually, I believe I just saw this exact shade in a picture captioned "Most Beautiful Room In The Whole World, According To Strangers Whose Job It is To Tell You What Is Beautiful, And You Believe Them, Too, As They Probably Work For People Magazine." Then, justlikethat, I am done! My crisp white painting clothes are still freshly pressed; maybe I have a cute little blue paint smudge on my cheek, but that's it. Satisfied by my accomplishment, I pour myself a glass of chilled white wine and quietly reflect upon my den. Around this time, all painting paraphenalia vanishes, and the entire room is magically transformed into the cover of Living magazine. Inexplicably, white linen stationery and freshly cut roses appear on the table, and the dogs are all wearing matching ribbons, and Bo is actually playing the harp in the corner, and I have just entered the softly-lit nirvana of understated, but unattainable, interior perfection.


Huh. Okay! Got to open the paint can. Will use...scissors? Knife? How do you open a paint can? You...helllooooo, screwdriver!

(Pop.) (splatter!)


Okay, and...holy lord. Oookay, that's blue. Wow, holy shit, is that blue. It's blue blue, just -- hey! That shade reminds me of something! From my childhood! Like, my childhood bedroom, maybe? Or a favorite toy? Or, uh...

HOLD ON. Why am I suddenly thinking about Working Girl? Was it - oh no. No, dear God, NO. DAMMIT, yes, this is the precise color of Cyn's eyeshadow in that scene where she says, "Coffee, tea, or me?" and dear LORD, everybody KNOWS that is not a color found in NATURE, and...hey! AIIIIEEEEEEEE! NO! NO NO NO! BAD DOG! DON'T STEP THERE! THAT IS PAINT! SHIT!

(two hours later)

Coffee, tea, or me? Coffee, tea, or me? Me, tea, or coffee? Tea or coffee, me? Tea or cofAHHHH NOOOOO! NOT AGAIN! BAD DOG BAD DOG! WHY? WHYYYYYY? And, AAHHHHH! FOOTPRINTS! PLEASE! STOP RUNNING! PLEASE!

(two hours later)

Coffee...tea...urgle. Mmph. Why is this paint? Not covering? At all? How many? Coats? (sob).

(two hours later)

Well, okay. (wheeze) That's it. It's (wheeze) really, really blue. I think it might dry to be even (wheeze) bluer. In fact, I can already tell what color it will ultimately be, by looking at the dogs. Who are...yeah. Yep. That's it. Cyn's eyeshadow. Fantastic.


Now. You can see several things here. First, you can see how my "okay, real quick I will tell you this one story and then I will get to the pressing issue, which deals with birds!" has flown out the window, so to speak (ha! I am funny) because actually, the birds seem to have gone away, which means I have long forgotten about them. (I will try to recreate my earlier sense of fear shortly.) But, you know, the other thing you can see is that there is a fundamental disconnect between the fantasy of painting and the reality of painting, and never the two shall meet, and sometimes, you realize you have accidentally not on purpose painted one wall in your house very, very, very blue:

Hey, kids! Four hundred Smurfs are hidden in this picture! Can you find them all?

Now, actually, I have to say. Despite my complaining, I kind of like it, y'all! It's very bright, and it's different, but it does match the table exactly. And, yes, it is extraordinarily blue -- unnaturally so, even -- but that is okay. Living magazine was not planning on coming over for a photoshoot any time soon. And in the meantime, the room is ten times brighter, and also it makes us all look thinner and way more hot. Who can argue with a color that does all that? Not me, baby.

And, just in case it was not painfully evident from the above paragraphs, I would like to again point out that, hey. Who did that? Who painted that room (okay, wall) all by herself, alone, with only the strength of her conviction and the power of her proclamation? Me! All me. I mean, I know it's no huge accomplishment, and actually it is not exactly the first time I have painted walls, but still! Still. I'm a little proud. I prepped the walls, taped the edges, picked out the right paint color, and stayed inside the lines and everything.

I like my wall. And I hereby proclaim it to be awesome.


Oooookay. Awesomeness aside, enough about the wall ("short version" my ASS, you are thinking), and now: birds! Attacking. Let me explain.

Earlier, I decided to write about the wall (life is pretty quiet when you decide to write about a wall), so I got the camera, and was about to take some pictures of the den, when I heard a crazy commotion at the kitchen door. The door leads to the backyard, and it's glass, so I could immediately see that the commotion was being caused by a small, brown bird. He wasn't smacking into the glass or anything; he was just right up against it, squawking at the top of his birdie lungs. And he was looking directly at me.

This was sort of fascinating, because: birdie hissy fit. Unusual! So I watched for a minute, and then I walked away, toward the den. But the bird followed me. He came flapping over to the den windows. And he was still squawking. And still looking at me.

Now, somewhere deep down in my being, there is a small, illogical part of me that kind of believes that every animal has the capacity to Lassie us all out of danger, if the need arises. Like, we could all say, "What is it, girl?" and the next thing you know, a turtle leads us to Timmy in a well, or a beaver shows us to the fire in the barn, or something else involving a combination of peril and small children. And random, helpful animals.

And then, there is another deep down part of me that has always, always wanted to be able to understand animals, Dolittle style (as opposed to Dog Whisperer style, because the Dolittle animals seem to have much more pleasant things to say, and probably do so in British accents, according to the Rex Harrison version). This is a secret desire (well, used to be), and it does not often rear its head except when the dogs are looking at me like that again, and I don't know what their damage is. Usually, this fantasy stays hidden.

It is the dangerous combination of these two impulses, however -- the belief in random, helpful animals, and the peculiar hope that I might suddenly possess the capacity to understand them -- that actually caused my dumb self to go outside to try to figure out what the hell was going on. I took the camera, and tried to catch a picture of the bird. Who, I might add, was still hollering at me. Here he is:


And then, all of a sudden, he was not alone.

Say hello to my leetle freend.

And then, I started looking around. And the birds. They were...everywhere.

On the furniture.

By the windows.

In the trees.

And they were all squawking. ALL of them. And they were all looking at me.


Recognizing an ambush, I immediately turned for the house. This is when one of the little fuckers flew at me. He brushed by the side of my head, and I screamed bloody murder and ran, in a full out sprint, for the back door.

From this point on, all of my bird pictures kind of look like this:

Oh, screen door, you are all that stands between me and certain death!


You are just going to have to trust me that the birds were, at this point, all gathered near the back door, verbally ripping me a new one. This made me very glad that I do not speak Dolittle, because I think they were using a lot of profanity, and I am not sure what I have done to piss off an army of birds, but dude, they are really, really angry at me.

So, there you go. Birds! Attacking! I narrowly escaped with my life. And as you can see, the dogs are just beside themselves with worry:


And also, Bo says hi.

Bo not afraid of stupid bird.

Hope y'all are all doing well out there, and that everyone is having a good week! If you aren't, I am sorry. And I will hereby proclaim that I hope it gets better. And, of course, that it does not involve any birds.

Posted by doxie in | permalink


"Bo playing the harp" *laughs hysterically* You do know that you're the funniest writer on the Internet, don't you Doxie?!

Posted by: Anna | May 11, 2006 04:04 AM

delurking to say that I LIKE the blue, dammit. It's very sassy, mid-century. CriMIniny, WTH with the birds? Scawy, girl. Vewy Scawy.


Posted by: Teri M. | May 11, 2006 04:17 AM

Heee Doxie Dolittle at it again! Why don't you paint the outside of your screen blue so when all the birds fly at it they get stuck and can't attack you....might work...like giant fly paper, only, bird paper....

And you're room looks cute! Very summery and kinda beach housey, well done you!

Posted by: Miss Moneypenny | May 11, 2006 05:49 AM

Oh, Leigh, that's not BLUE. It's AQUA and it's FRESH and HIP and SASSY and OH SO VERY DOXIE. And I will try to stop using all caps now. But I love it, actually, and sort of want to live in your house now.

As for the attacking birds, I have two words for you: mating season. Have Dukay go out there and scope around a bit; my guess is that there is a nest (or three or four) near your door, possibly with eggs. Soon you will have the relentless chirpchirpchirp of baby birdies to accompany the kamikaze birds diving at your head!

Posted by: Mir | May 11, 2006 07:55 AM

Here are possible scenarios to explain the attack of the birds:

1) They love the wall so much that they feel compelled to express their bird love for it. Possibly they work for the bird version of Living magazine and are trying to contact you for an interview!

2) Again on the bird journalism theme, they are bird paparazzi, trying to chronicle the life of the fabulous Miss Doxie!

3) They are relatives of the crazed bird you rescued after the hurricane and are merely trying to thank you for saving their long lost cousin. But because they are relatives of the crazed bird, they too are crazy, thus making the attempted contact frightening.

See? Birds attacking are not necessarily a bad thing. They like you! They really like you!

Posted by: msmack | May 11, 2006 07:57 AM

Fantastic post. The birds look very sinister indeed. The wall, though? Fabulous.

Posted by: LĂ©onie | May 11, 2006 08:10 AM

Mobbing is a noisy, obvious form of behaviour that birds engage in to defend themselves or their offspring from predators. When a predator is discovered, the birds start to emit alarm calls and fly at the predator, diverting its attention and harassing it. Sometimes they make physical contact. Mobbing usually starts with just one or two birds, but may attract a large number of birds, often of many species. For example, a chorus of different alarm calls coming from the same tree is often a good sign of a roosting owl or a cat.
Mobbing behaviour has been recorded in a wide range of species, but it is particularly well developed in gulls and terns, while crows are amongst the most frequent mobbers. In addition to flying at the predator and emitting alarm calls, some birds, such as fieldfares and gulls, add to the effectiveness by defaecating or even vomiting on the predator with amazing accuracy...

Brought to you by your friendly neighborhood psych major. (With some help from Wikipedia.)

Posted by: Cassiopeia | May 11, 2006 08:11 AM

"add to the effectiveness by defecating or even vomiting on the predator with amazing accuracy..."

I can vouch for this. Simply minding my own business, sitting in a courtyard reading a book last month, I noticed that the birds were quite loud and must be engaging in a turf war. What I did not notice is that I was obviously the enemy. About a half hour into the spectacle, one bird (who had apparently been eating well) dropped a bomb on me, missing my head by only a few inches.

It was disgusting. And embarassing. And you should be thankful you got out when you did, Doxie.

Posted by: Maggie | May 11, 2006 08:36 AM

oh, i lurve the blue. I think it looks fabulous! i have also just recently recovered from a painting adventure, in which we repaint the steps in our house (why were they painted in the first place? i don't know, but if i see the people that did it I may very well need bo's assistance in HATING). anyway, where was I? oh yes, our steps have peeling paint and we need our house to sell (please! please!)so we went into our paint stores . . .

yes, we keep paint around the house. at home depot and lowes on the weekends there is OOPS paint, paint that people wanted and had made then decided, hey! my living room should NOT be that color of brown, and then the store sells it for $5 and maybe I did want my living room to be that color of brown.

i digress. So, we find a reasonable color (of brown) and my dear husband starts to paint the steps while I am at work. And then i come home, and he failed to bring a change of clothes down, so i'm stuck in a suit all night. we think, two hours and the paint should dry.

NO, that is wrong. 5 hours later, i am climbing a LADDER to my second floor. yes, a ladder. and then my husband carries our 60 lb dog up said ladder. this is my evening.

thank god there were no birds.

Posted by: kristina | May 11, 2006 08:48 AM

Delurking to FULLY support the marauding birds theory. I am a hater of pretty much all flying-things (except airplanes because they take a person to fun places like Hawaii and Cabo San Lucas).

My daughter has taken the phobia a step further and will have nothing to do with feathers.

Also, I like the blue.

Posted by: Kristin | May 11, 2006 09:22 AM

Doxie your wall is beau-ti-ful!Maybe those birds have a nest by your door??

Posted by: Lauren | May 11, 2006 09:29 AM

i think the room looks fab with the blue wall! Also, you should watch The Birds and glean some survival strategies from the movie. In fact, I'm proclaiming it. Much like The Proclaimers.

Posted by: Erin | May 11, 2006 09:40 AM

At first I tought you would paint the TABLE to match your room! I was shocked that you would paint such a fabulous object! But oh, I do love that bluish-aqua and very bright blue. I kinda did the same thing in my living room: I suddently declared that nothing would be more fabulous than a RED wall! and oh, in my kitchen, I did the same thing but with a very bright green....and... hummm! There seems to be a pattern here...

oh and, might I say, your pups are very cute!

Posted by: Valerie | May 11, 2006 09:43 AM

Love the blue wall and am totally impressed by your ability to paint. I am banned from this activity in our house as I totally SUCK at it. I tried to help once when my beloved was away on business so that he could come home to his painting fantasy (which has some of the similar components to yours Doxie - the main exception is the wine is red). Except that he had to spend 2 hours fixing my helping. So no more painting for me. We have nests in our back yard and the birds not only feel the need to attack me but my dog as well. I have never used my camera to gain evidence of my Alfred Hitchcock moments but I see that it does help as it never happens to my beloved and therefore he does not believe me.

Posted by: Diane | May 11, 2006 09:50 AM

Love the blue, love it. I have an entire blue bathroom (though not aqua blue, more grayish blue).

On a side note, about two weeks ago I got attacked by a goose. The birds, they are rising up against us.

Posted by: Confessions of a Neurotic Newlywed | May 11, 2006 09:54 AM

You guys, if a bird VOMITS on me, I am pretty sure that I will have to be institutionalized. Probably for the rest of my life.

Posted by: Miss Doxie | May 11, 2006 09:59 AM

I proclaim the wall is awesome, too! Reminds me of when I painted my bedroom walls red. Looked really nice, and I was quite proud of myself, as it was my first time ever painting walls. Anyway, applause to you!

Posted by: W. Lotus | May 11, 2006 10:02 AM

Excuse me, I have learned Dr. Doolittle speak and the birds were angry that you did not paint the walls of their nest and/or birdhouse blue just like your own wall.

They only went away to down a pint at the local pub and complain bitterly to the entire bird community and are currently drawing up plans to form an army until you give in to their demands.

Forewarned is forearmed.

Now then, I too know how one lives in fantasy land thinking big things like, "When I get done painting this living room in one hour, I will be the envy of the neighborhood and I may even appear on MTV cribs despite the fact that I am not famous. Because this paint? And me? Awesome.

The reality is, three days later, one is still painting and cannot stop because one and a half walls are painted and it would just look ridiculous although part of you really doesn't care I mean, when people come over, it's usually to get them drunk, right?

And! I don't know about you but for some reason I feel compelled to point out all the little paint marks I made on the ceiling by accident when no one had seen them before. Course I never do anything about them except point them out.

(But my apartment did look really, really good in the end.)

I like your blue coffee table and am pleased you didn't paint it and chose the wall instead. I think it looks great.

Posted by: Serenity | May 11, 2006 10:14 AM

THe birds were just mobbing you because you're so fabulous. I'm sure in birdie-speak they were all saying "Miss Doxie! Miss Doxie! Who are you wearing?" Now you know how Scarlett Johanson feels.

Posted by: Librarian Girl | May 11, 2006 11:14 AM

erm.. Could the angry, hateful birds perhaps have anything to do w/Hizzoner Bo? Could they possibly have formed a gang to lie in wait for Mr. Bo and avenge something that he had done to wrong one of theirs?

That's what I'm going to choose to believe.

Posted by: Kathryn | May 11, 2006 11:22 AM

You appear to have been beset upon by either Berwick's Wrens or Carolina Wrens. The two species are somewhat similar in appearance. They look more like Berwick's Wrens to me, but they were aggressive like Carolina Wrens. Also, Berwicks make a kind of buzzing noise, whereas Carolinas chirp when they scold.

You may find the above information absolutely useless. But the first rule in the Art of War is know thine enemy!

Posted by: TheMac | May 11, 2006 11:23 AM

Birds: scary.

Wall: looks great. Really!

Posted by: Arwen | May 11, 2006 11:25 AM

I am completely inspired (by the wall, not by the birds.) I, myself, do not have painting/decorating or any other visual beauty skills (any beauty that happens in my life seems to be random or simply genetic--like my somehow fabulous hair which I do nothing in the way of upkeep--and we all know that we have nothing to do with random or genetics. I throw up my hands in a gesture of "who knows?!")...anyway, I am going to move to New York City and I am going to have my own place (because I PROCLAIM that to be true) and I own NO furniture (subletting a furnished place in SF right now. Seriously, I have NO SKILLS) and ANYWAY--I am inspired! I liked the picture of your coffee table room and I hope to draw strength and a "can do" attitude from it as I begin my search through flea markets, Ikea and craigslist posts in the quest for non-random, well-placed beauty. THANK YOU.

Posted by: Elijah | May 11, 2006 12:12 PM

The wall? Gorgeous. GORGEOUS!! I love it and it might inspire me to do the same. I have some really fabulous window frame mirrors that look like they might go with your table (and now your wall).

I recommend body armor when you go outside.

Posted by: hannah | May 11, 2006 12:13 PM

I can explain the birds! Blue is to birds, as red is to bulls (you remember those analogies from the LSAT?) So the birds? Pissed, charging, would gore you if they could. But! It's beautiful, totally worth being gored. You are motivating me to paint my living room, which I have been meaning to do for months. Just a boring beige color, but still, I'll be safe from birds.

Posted by: Sheryl | May 11, 2006 01:35 PM

Illustrated Doxie is even funner, which is remarkable, because text-only
Doxie has already been proven to be the Funnest Thing Ever.

Just so. And the birds? Are after you because THEY KNOW.

Love the wall! Ta!

Posted by: holley | May 11, 2006 01:50 PM

...i'm still getting the image of Bo and the others in cabbage patch doll clothes outta my mind...scars, i can feel em forming already

Posted by: Kara | May 11, 2006 02:05 PM

I LOVE the blue. It's PERFECT. It's sort of retro-diner-beachy blue, and I think it's gorgeous and want to steal all your ideas and proclaim them my own.

Posted by: Kristen V. | May 11, 2006 02:14 PM

Hmmm, I'm thinking the birds don't like that particular color blue, but since you're alive to tell about the whole ordeal, I suspect they got over themselves.

Posted by: Suz | May 11, 2006 02:38 PM

Love it! Can't wait to see it. Come paint my bedroom.

Posted by: Hannah Beth | May 11, 2006 02:51 PM

I wonder if the birds are angry the pallets left.

Posted by: Miss Fish | May 11, 2006 03:33 PM

I love the wall. Love the whole room really. Will you come do mine?

(Some damn fool who lived in my condo before me painted the hallway raspberry. While I love my raspberry cashmere sweater, I am not so much with the sherbet-hued hallway (although it does provide fantastic camouflage when I wear said sweater). But it's a rental (the condo, not the sweater) and I'm lazy.)

Posted by: Elizabeth | May 11, 2006 03:38 PM

What a fabulous table! (And wall!) Where can I get myself a table like that (in Los Angeles)?

Posted by: Carin | May 11, 2006 04:08 PM

I completely heart your living room and also want to move in.

Where, oh where, did you get the Coca-Cola artifact on the wall? Can you hook a sista up?

Posted by: Stefanie | May 11, 2006 04:26 PM

Okay, this isn't so funny anymore, after reading your post at work and laughing hilariously, it seriously was the highlight of my day, I left for lunch and decided to take a meander through the park, because sun! In Scotland!
Anyway, while there I was (and I do not kid) chased by a swan, chased by a dog and had lots of some kind of nut thing thrown at me by two squirrels, I decided it was infinitly safer to eat my lunch at work. I think the animals are trying to take over! Send help!

Posted by: Miss Moneypenny | May 11, 2006 04:37 PM

Wow-- You have NO IDEA how cutting edge you are. In this month's Domino there is a feature called "Aqua and Lime Green" or some such, but the upshot is that you need to paint your fireplace a VERY bright lime green (much much brighter than this border, for example-- they give you the exact paint color in the mag) and then you REALLY WILL be the epitome of the decorator du jour and you will forget all about the hideous birds.

Posted by: Anne Glamore | May 11, 2006 06:06 PM

Oh Doxie, how funny! I thought at first when you said the table matched nothing in the room you were going to paint a picture with some of that lovely muted blue-green turquoise in it to highlight the table. Would of been easier I think. Anyway, I like your wall. Looks very beach house.
The birds are Carolina Wrens (one of my favorites), and are very territorial when nesting. They build up under eaves, at the tops of downspouts and on top of columns. Look for the nest. I bet it is near the door. Other wrens may have come near looking for a place to build and started the whole rigamarole. They will also dive-bomb the dogs so stand back and watch the fun.

Posted by: mackmomma | May 11, 2006 06:09 PM

love the bird story and love the blue. it tottally matches the table.

Posted by: stella | May 11, 2006 09:24 PM

The bird thing made me picture you in a Disney cartoon feature, like Cinderella or Sleeping Beauty; whereas their cartoon birds flew about and lit on their fingers and sang prettily, yours WOULD be screaming obscenities at you. Miss Doxie surrounded by Tourette's Syndrome Birds, singing a musical number. This I would pay BIG MONEY to see.

I like the blue table, and the blue wall. Elvis Costello has a song called "Blue Chair". Maybe you should get one of those next.

Posted by: Gretchen | May 11, 2006 10:35 PM

"Hi! I brought you some bird flu!"

Holy crap, I needed that laughing fit. Thank you. Thank you. I bow to your genius comic timing.

Also: Lovelovelove the blue. Excellent choice. Will you please come decorate my house? (You may feel free to leave the bird flu at home.)

Posted by: scarlettbgonya | May 11, 2006 10:53 PM

The wall-it is the picture of aqua fabulosity. Loooove it! As for the birds-yes, they are evil. I have what is now known as the Chickadee Mafia. They gather en masse in my backyard and scream their little heads off when the bird feeder gets empty. However, they aren't bright enough to figure out that they dump half of it on the ground and a birdie buffet awaits if they'd just open their beady little eyes. I guess what I'm trying to say is they aren't smart enough to kill you. They'll just peep at half past butt crack if they're hungry.

Posted by: Melissa | May 12, 2006 12:31 AM

Pretty blue, maybe it's the color of the birds eggs and they all wanted in to hatch it. No weirder than the magic pallets.

Posted by: Miz | May 12, 2006 01:34 AM

I would agree w/ the aqua color, being a raving fan of all blues.. but it looks really nice and btw.. you have a great place! Would love you to help me decorate my place and I swear I wouldn't make you paint.. but it looks awesome.. I bet it even looked good on the dogs.

That last pic of Bo is adorable too!

And um.. maybe a bird feeder? Keep your friends close and your enemies closer? No? Just a thought..

Posted by: Angel | May 12, 2006 02:16 AM

One Sunday afternoon I realized that the birds were extraordinarily loud, looked outside, and saw literally HUNDREDS of crows flying in a circle over the house and perched in all of the trees. It was truly the creepiest thing I've ever personally seen. They hung around for a few hours, during which I don't think I could have been lured out of the house if it was burning down around me! During those few hours I found myself, irrationally, checking the windows constantly to make sure none of them had found a way inside in order to peck me to death!

Posted by: Charlene | May 12, 2006 06:29 AM

a) LOVE the wall.
b) You really are awesome for painting it by yourself. My painting experience would have envolved crying and making Matt do it for me.
c) Birds are INSANE. I'm glad you escaped with your life!

Posted by: Marcia | May 12, 2006 09:36 AM

Maybe there is a less sinister connotation about the bird thing. Maybe they are baby birds that have just learned to fly and they think you are the big momma bird and will feed them? Awww. How cute. No?

Posted by: Shawna | May 12, 2006 10:41 AM

1. I am absolutely in love with the shade of blue you used. If it's not too stupid to even ask, can you post the brand and name of it? I'm thinking it would be beautiful in a bathroom.

2. How could you forget the greatest animal speaker of all time? That is She-Ra, PRINCESS OF POWER. She would talk to animals, do back flips across the screen and smite the bad guy with her sword. My HERO.

Posted by: Laziza | May 12, 2006 10:53 AM

I too am obsessed with picking off scabs...so much so that it was the one thing I still remembered to comment on after reading that post and all the responses.

Posted by: PhoenixHearse | May 12, 2006 11:34 AM

Dude, as I have already noted elsewhere this very week (it must be the damn bird flu, eh? Why is everyone having such a hard time with effing birds?) i once got pooped on by a seagull at the Statue of Liberty, I shit you not. I hate all birds forever and ever now. They're all assholes, just like the ones outside your door. The only solution is to run out with a broom and flail it around all crazy-like hoping that they get the idea that 'this psycho biatch' is not who effing birds wanna mess with. Yikes.

Posted by: andy | May 12, 2006 11:45 AM

I am nothing if not helpful, nice commenters who like the blue wall of blueness! Y'all come over and have a cocktail.

Here is me helping:

The paint color is Sherwin Williams Aqueduct, color 6758. It's some satin finish, if you care. You don't, but pretend you did for a minute.

The coffee table came from the Inman Park Street Festival in Atlanta. The guy who does them is a local artist who goes in and takes (steals) wood from old farmhouses and things. I have no idea what his name is (maybe I am actually not so helpful), but he goes to most of the Atlanta festivals with a whole bunch of furniture. Including another table that I really, really want, but have no place to put.

The Coke thing is just the side of an old Coca Cola cooler; I got it at an antique fair, because Dukay loves Coke antiques, and that was the only thing that would shut him up. Also, it's all rusty and I like it.

And, I got two emails about this, so I'll post this link here, too. The painting above the fireplace is by Robert Heckes, and it is a web banner. Is that not so clever? It is. He is also a very nice guy, so I will shout out accordingly. You can see more of his stuff here:


The one I own is the One Click Forest, which is also on that page. It is huge and very cool.

I think that is all. For now. Y'all know I will be back in seven minutes.

Posted by: Miss Doxie | May 12, 2006 12:08 PM

I think the room looks awesome! Go you, painting it all by yourself!

And Bo (and all your other Doxies) are just precious....my little b & t one Mollie says hello!

Posted by: allismom | May 12, 2006 12:26 PM

Oh, Doxie...you are so talented! Painting, proclamating, drinking, angering the feathered! Is there anything you can't do?

Posted by: Chollyson | May 12, 2006 01:22 PM

I have a t-shirt in that shade of blue. It looks good with my brown skirt. So I hereby proclaim it is a great color.

Posted by: z. | May 12, 2006 02:42 PM

Loving the blue-tiful wall. It makes a nice backdrop for the painting you just wrote about.

Posted by: ishouldbeworking | May 12, 2006 05:13 PM

I'm with Hannah B. Come paint my bedroom! You can spend more than 25 hours in Philadelphia this time. I will give you wine.

That is a great color. I had a bedroom that color when I was a teenager, and the crown molding was this dark, dark teal color. The molding wasn't so pretty, unfortunately, but the color of your wall reminds me of my room. And also that my teenage self was way too into teal.

Posted by: Coleen | May 12, 2006 10:14 PM

Love the wall. (Happy.) Hate the birds. (Creepy.)

Posted by: klh | May 12, 2006 10:27 PM

i seriously have tears streaming down my face from laughing so hard about the birds. you are hilarious..although scary birds are not funny at all. i also think the wall looks great and those dogs are the cutest things i have ever seen (besides my daughter of course)

Posted by: sharla | May 12, 2006 11:27 PM

How is it your house is always so neat? And gorgeous, but mostly, neat? You shame me.

Posted by: Haley | May 13, 2006 07:45 AM

If I only lived closer I would have come over and helped you paint, it's my most favourite thing to do!
And birds, eek and scary.

Posted by: Brighton | May 13, 2006 05:41 PM

Hysterical. I loved the "Holy hell, is that blue!" Also the dangerous talon things. Been snickering about the latter, all day.

Posted by: Ashley | May 13, 2006 09:12 PM

I am very proud of your immaculate-lookin paintjob! (btw, nice den!) Lovely turquoise color. Of course, what else am I gonna say? I've got drapes and throw cushions that match in my LIVING ROOM! HAH!

2nd, talon things comment cracked me up too! You're so funny. See? Birdies look all cute an innocent, but they're really PSYCHO!

Oh, and thank you VERY much for the overly-concerned-with-mom's-safety doxie photos. ADORABLE.

Posted by: Scarlett Cyn | May 14, 2006 05:19 AM

I hadn't intended to post a comment, but I had a Scary Bird Experience mere hours after reading your post. So I figured it was my duty to warn Miss Doxie readers that the Scary Birds? They are contagious.

A friend and I were eating on the patio of a fairly well-known chain restaurant when a pigeon landed on the table next to us, and started eating someone's leftover food. I thought "Ick, flying rat," and attempted to shoo it away by half-heartedly waving my arms at it. I guess that sent some kind of bird homing signal out, because within seconds about 983 pigeons descended on the patio and began eating every unguarded piece of food in sight. The other patrons looked at me like I was some kind of pigeon Pied Piper, orchestrating the whole thing. The worst part is that when the pigeons left, a bus boy came and took all the empty plates back to be washed like nothing had happened.

Posted by: sortasandy | May 15, 2006 12:11 PM

Shawna had it right - some of the wrens are babies, newly-fledged. You can tell because some of the birds appear to be missing tails (the tail feathers are the last things to come in). When they just leave the nest, and particularly if their tails haven't grown in, their steering is *not good*. And then when you came out, the parents mobbed you, trying to protect the young birds.

Love the blue wall, and all of the dog stories!

Posted by: Lisa | May 15, 2006 01:27 PM

I wish you could quit your job, spend the day having even more crazy adventures and then every night sit down to tell us all about them in your most fabulously, most hilarously, most engaging way. Man, the photos in this entry were classic! 'Hi! I brought you some bird flu' made me pee my panties...well almost. Oh, I think your wall looks awesome!

Posted by: jen | May 16, 2006 10:36 AM

lmfao, oh my god i love reading you! you make me laugh so hard i cry!!

Posted by: jonelle | May 16, 2006 11:13 AM

I like the blue wall (but then I have a blue wall in my house, and am therefore partial to blue walls). And I didn't see any blue Bo prints on the floor, so that's good. Nor did I see any blue bird prints, so that's good, too. BTW, never go to the park with bread, where the pigeons start to look like Hitchcock's The Birds. Or to St. Mark's Square in Venice. :)

Posted by: carmen | May 16, 2006 12:38 PM

Maybe the birds took the whole 'robin egg' blue thing to heart and think you have captured their leader and have staged a war against you. Only there not robins and now I am out of ideas. And Bo? He knows better that to fvck with anything that has talons. Must we remind you of the STITCH?? No holes for Bo, thanks.

Posted by: VeeBeeWhy? | May 16, 2006 03:47 PM

I can so relate to the bird thing - we have a nest right beside our front door, so every time I try to go inside they swoop at me. So scary! Hope they went away. Also, I love your blue wall. It's very pretty.

Posted by: Jessie | May 16, 2006 07:04 PM

Probably someone else has posted this already, but I'm being lazy and not reading all the comments.

They're Carolina wrens, and most likely the babies (they tend to have several) were taking their first flight. The parents were trying to protect the babies, who most likely were cluelessly following and really not quite getting the whole steering thing as well. We had a crew of them take flight for the first time two weekends ago and it was really cool to watch. If you want real bird dramatics, though, let me tell you about the mockingbirds that bitch every day at the hawks that like to sit on the antenna of the house across the street.... VERY funny.

Posted by: LauraL | May 16, 2006 07:42 PM

I turned your "Hi, I brought you some bird flu" photo into my computer's wallpaper. Do ya mind? I promise not to copy and resell it and make a kazillion dollars. (For my daily amusement only until the bird starts to scare me.) But if I did I promise I will share. Me + Kazillion dollars = Not happening. Ever. No worries there.

PS Luv, luv, LUV the blue wall. Fabulous! You rock. Even I look thinner against the wall, and I haven't been to Georgia in the last 15+ years. You are amazing. (Maybe the birds just want to pop in and get a glimpse of themselves looking thinner? They were a bit on the pudgy side.)

Posted by: Shano | May 17, 2006 01:09 AM

I didn't read all 70 comments before me, but I really like the blue, and I love the way it brings out the red in your Coca Cola sign, and in the painting above the mantle. Red+aqua blue=so very stylish.

Posted by: laura | May 17, 2006 10:45 AM

Hi, you don't know me. I did read all 70 comments before me, and I'm amazed no one has mentioned the possibility the birds attacked cuz you were taking pictures of them. (With flash!) :D (Even though someone above did call the birds "the parazzi.")

First you took one, and then another, and then the birds were like, "Look at that woman, she is not stopping. Let's get 'er!!"

When I take pictures of humans too much, they sometimes rise up, too.

You are hilarious. Cheers!

Posted by: Rita | May 18, 2006 07:17 PM

You may have already heard this, but here's a little Jack Bauer diddy for ya:


Posted by: New Jan Brady (Lauren) | May 18, 2006 07:57 PM

OH, Girl. Though your posts few and far between as they may be(eh, so your a busy lawyer, smeh) They always manage to crack me the fuck up. The blue, it is great. That's the beauty of owning your own home is it not? "Bo playing a harp in the corner"...just about killed me!

Posted by: Bethany Coffey | May 18, 2006 09:30 PM

I work at a firm in Marietta and I kid you not, we got an email from the office administrator warning us of a dive bombing bird by one of the entrances to the building. AND, I had a bird fly at me at the beginning of this week as I was trying to enter another entrance. Something is going on and it's not cool. Not cool at all.
It has got to be bird flu.

PS-I love your wall!

Posted by: Katie | May 19, 2006 10:44 AM

I covet your blue table. I wonder if it is like a vitrine with a lid to lift or if it is a one-piece? Anyway the whole room is just pretty pretty pretty.

Posted by: Pomme Granite | May 19, 2006 12:01 PM

I want you to know that the pictures of your place inspire me to clean my place. I'm not inspired enough to paint it, but cleaning is a good start. :)

Posted by: Lani | May 22, 2006 12:28 PM

Love the blue.

Am waaaaaaaayy creeped out by the birds. Seriously? What did they want??

Posted by: Bethany | May 23, 2006 08:38 PM

Some people are claiming that there might be a nest of birds by your door. I hope that's it, because I never thought it was possible for an entire species of animals to hate you until the great goose incedent of '91 when I and my Cousin were viciously attacked by a Canadian Goose...

I still harbor goose rage and must repress a strong desire to lasso their sassy little necks.

Great entry :)

Posted by: Debbie Dynamo | May 24, 2006 12:32 PM

Did the birds get you? Are you drunk? Are you in jail?

Don't try to pretend that you actually "work" or "have a job" and are "too busy" to entertain me....I mean us...I mean, you're really cool, please tell me a story.

Posted by: Amy | May 25, 2006 07:16 PM

Less than 2 hours after posting my comment harrassing Miss Doxie into posting, my finger sore from constantly refreshing her site (because I am an internet stalker), I was assaulted by a flock of pigeons on my way home. At least a dozen of them dive-bombed me. There was poop. On my head.

So, now, I know the truth. Doxie has obviously made up with the birds and is now their queen.

I'm sorry. Please tell the pigeons to leave me alone.

Posted by: Amy | May 26, 2006 12:45 PM

I'm totally with Scarlett, Jen and Shano -- the giggles I got from "Hi! I brought you some bird flu!" were SO needed! Thank you. So funny.

Around Austin, the University of Texas campus is well known for the enormous population of grackles roosting among its trees (well, to be honest, Austin in general is known for its copious amounts of grackles EVERYWHERE - it just SEEMS like there's a heavier concentration on campus). During fall orientation, entering freshmen are sometimes regaled with the myth that most students don't make it to graduation without getting pooped on by a grackle at least once. (ASIDE: Nothing, and I mean NOTHING, smells quite like a steaming pile of fresh grackle guano, especially on a hot, muggy, summer-in-Austin day.) I very foolishly and prematurely counted myself as one of the lucky ones who'd actually made it through to the end without getting hit. Heh heh. But lo, I was far and away too quick to brag. One of those grackles must have seen me doing the superior dance, because two weeks before graduation, some birdie flung goo right on top of my head -- it was in my HAIR. Bragging rights: DENIED. But quick. What to do? I only had 10 minutes between classes. My classes were WAY far apart. I had no time to make it to a restroom to try to clean up, so I had to sit through an entire lecture with the horrible knowledge that I had bird crap in my hair. Mortifying. I don't THINK anyone noticed, and if they did, they weren't telling. But STILL.

Then there was the time while I was living in D.C. when my cat and I got dive bombed by bluejays. Now THEM'S some nasty birds. I had to put on a baseball cap and oven mits to get my cat out from under the porch and bring her inside the house.

Damn birds. Like the other reader said -- rats with wings.

Posted by: Sarah | June 2, 2006 05:55 PM

I think one of those birds infiltrated the fireplace. I see him hovering over there. Watch out.

Posted by: Amber | June 9, 2006 11:30 AM

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