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July 17, 2007

The Unexamined Life: A Tiding of Magpies

"The unexamined life is not worth living." - Socrates, in Plato, Dialogues, Apology

Jennifer and I drag our suitcases into the open house, leaning against the uneven heat of the July summer. Her. Me. Two suitcases. Two children. One forty. One ten.

Screens and dried grass and empty bluebird houses. No bluebirds. Only Magpies and Crows and Stellar Jays. Corvidae. Oscine Passerine birds. That’s what we have and I hate them. I’ve watched Magpies drag baby bluebirds from their nest and eat them. They’re mean and I don’t like them and there's a tiding of them out back right now making an awful din.

A 12 gauge appears in my hands. An automatic. It just materializes in my hands. Maybe it was in the gun cabinet a few seconds ago. But now I have it in my hands and I’m studying the shotgun shell really closely….It’s a 2 ¾? dove load.

OK. That will work on Magpies, I figure. I open the door and step outside. The magpies are battling vociferously, over what, I do not know. I do not care. I’m about to put and end to this madness.

For the rest of the story buy my book "Killing Strangers.

Posted by Rob Kiser on July 17, 2007 at 9:45 PM

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