A Long Ladder and a Healthy Dose of Curiousity

From the residents’ newsletter of a friend’s apartment building:

At the beginning of April, one of our residents approached our caretakers with a most unusual request: it seems that she had been sitting out on a fine day–minding her own business–when a crow swooped down out of nowhere, snatched up her dentures (which she had discreetly placed on the bench next to her) and flew away.

Being quick-witter and understandably rather fond of her dentures, the resident carefully watched the progress of the crow as he flew away and deposited the dentures on the roof of Townhouse 3. And here’s where the caretakers came into the story. The resident reported what had happened to Mark and Luke, and wondered aloud if they might be able to recover the dentures for her.

Although perhaps a wee bit dubious, they were certainly not dismissive of this tall tale and undertook to aid this damsel in distress. Equipped with a long ladder and a healthy dose of curiosity, the two investigated the roof of the townhouse, and found, undamaged, the very dentures they were seeking!

A tad Reader’s Digest, but heck, it’s Friday.

When I was in university, a crow once briefly landed on my head. I assume he mistook my greasy, 19-year-old hair for something shiny. I also know somebody who was repeatedly dive-bombed by a crow who wanted her metal hairclip.

Have you ever had a run in with a crow?


  1. Anyone remember the ad campaign a few years ago for a local mall, picturing someone being attacked by seagulls for her fries, with the simple caption “Outside Scary!”? My wife and I use the expression all the time — she had it happen several times with gulls and crows.

    And one day as a kid she was a few blocks from home walking to school when a potato pancake dropped from the sky at her feet — oddly, the same kind she’d had for breakfast. Turns out her dad was chucking leftovers on the roof for the crows. One must have found it too heavy.

  2. No crows, but I have an extreme fear of birds, so naturally they target me. I was once in St Mark’s Square in Italy when a flock of pigeons landed near me (and NO – of course I wasn’t in the middle where the crazy people PLAY!?! with pigeons – gross) and proceeded to fight. Three pigeons began to win, most others left, except the one straggler who was pecked to death AT MY FEET as I sit there horrified and my husband is trying really hard not to openly mock my fear. And then my waiter came by to refresh my wine and deftly kicked the dead pigeon under the table.

  3. I was running through central park in the evening a few years ago when a crow came down on my head too! don’t know if he was trying to attack or land! I was a moving object, so not too sure what he was so interested in!

  4. There’s a murder (heh) a block south of my apartment which is known to dive-bomb your head. When I first heard about it I thought the person was making it up and then it happened to me.

  5. You’ll see more than your fair share on the drive from Calgary to Vancouver, especially at rest stops where garbage from travelling motorists is scattered everywhere.

    They’re bigger than you think. Be careful! 🙂

  6. We’d be remiss not to mention the vast clouds of crows that make their way from various parts of the Lower Mainland to the Still Creek area of Burnaby every evening around sunset. It’s enough of a phenomenon that Kirsten named her blog “Crows to Burnaby” (and hasn’t updated it in almost a year…).

    It’s also worth listening to last week’s podcast of CBC Radio’s “Quirks and Quarks,” where a researcher shows that mockingbirds (and probably other smart birds like crows and gulls) can learn to recognize individual humans by sight, and react differently to them than they would to strangers.

    Perhaps, Virginia, they can also smell fear.

  7. Here’s another worst nightmare from life in a building:

    1) Someone drops their keys (house and vehicle) while they are exiting the elevator. The keys somehow pass through the little gap – and wind up on the bottom of the elevator shaft.

    2) Someone else spends an hour and a half lying on their stomach dangling a magnet down 3 stories worth of elevator shaft….

    1. I did that exact same thing (at least step one) a few years ago. I didn’t bother with step two because it was 25 floors, not three.

  8. I once got whacked by a crow (heh heh) while I was minding my own business walking up Government St.

    At the time, I got the idea that maybe one of its crowlings (? godsons?) had fallen out of a nest and he was trying to protect it.

    It packed a surprising wallop and those talons mean business too.

    1. That, as it happens, is the same street where I got attacked by a crow. I was about a block north of the Inner Harbour.

  9. Prior to this year I’d never heard of crow attacks, but this year a bunch of people I know have been attacked.

    There are 4 more years until the 50th anniverary of The Birds. Maybe they’re just getting ready.

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