Nobody in London likes pigeons. You can tell because of the spikes. You’ve seen pigeon spikes before – even Louisville has them. But the breed of spike in London is of a nature far more severe and serious than any thin fan of needles we may use. These are medieval. These are dark, black phalluses of chiseled iron that crown every statue and windowsill like holy thorns. This is no mere deterrent, this is a war. A witch hunt of spears against the fat, bobble-headed coo-devil.
I don’t get it. I like pigeons. I like pigeons exactly because they are fat, bobble-headed coo-devils. And they will eat French fries, which is fascinating. They come with City Life. And I am living Life in the City. I appreciate their presence because they are true metropolis-exotica.
But London does not share my views, and the forefathers of the city went to sharp and intense lengths (literally) to ensure that the “flying rat” (pssh) would only find fortress for its feathers.
Why am I talking about pigeons? Because the comically outlandish vendetta against them helps me relive London, and reliving London is a wonderful place to spend an afternoon. The Jane Austen Society agrees, wouldn’t you know.
Kicking off the 200th anniversary of the famous novel Pride & Prejudice, the Jane Austen Society will focus all of its 2013 programming around the book, starting with its first meeting this Sunday, “Reliving the ‘Pride & Prejudice’ Tour”.
Drawing on the experiences of several members who took the tour in September of 2010, Sunday’s event will bring the nostalgia back to life, discussing the visited sites – including the filming locations of the 1995 BBC adaptation – and setting the tone for a year with Austen’s most beloved novel. The meeting starts at 2pm and will be held at Locust Grove. Afternoon tea will, of course, be served following. Pinkies out.
I made my own memories on the streets of Her Majesty’s city once. I made it on cobblestones and in pubs and in quite a lot of bookstores, yes. But my favorites flapped and waddled and purred in great droves, and when you get started at a good run, they spread like a wave of dots up into the gray sky, settling again on the ground some mere handful of feet away. Because every building in London hates pigeons. Jane Austen probably saw that, too.
Locust Grove is located at 561 Blankenbaker Lane.
Image: Courtesy of www.novelreaction.com