Only on Vashon – The Weekly Rundown 2/11/22

Islanders have been upset about the rise in crime, and we have a new, unique criminal act to report. 

Owls have been attacking joggers in Dockton Forest. 

One jogger reports that he was minding his own business when he suddenly felt a blow to the head which knocked off his hat. It took a while of looking around until he saw the culprit up a tree, looking smug. 

This particular aggressive owl is not just any owl. His name is Cedric.

The owls don’t have ill intent. They’re just letting you know that this is their territory. So do not under any circumstances eat all the mice in Dockton Forest, or the owl will have words for you.

Astute islanders identified the suspect bird as a barred owl, whose mating call sounds like “drunk monkeys.” I’ve never had the pleasure of being in a room with a sober monkey, let multiple drunk ones, so I’m not sure what that would sound like. 

As much as being attacked by an owl sounds frightening, We must remember that owls are a beneficial part of the ecosystem because they prevent rodents from getting into our cars.

And, though they bully us, owls are themselves bullied.  As one islander informs us, “Squirrels scold them mercilessly.”

Another slander tells us to expect to get attacked. To the owl, a big, sweaty, running human looks like a predator giving chase. Consider the owl brave for fighting something ten times its size. We’re told that if we walk peacefully in the woods, we won’t be attacked, and we should “Think from their perspective.”

The original poster is not going to let a few aggressive owls stop him from jogging. He’s going to wear an eagle hat instead. 

Yet another islander has a different plan. They say, “I would love to be hit by an owl.”

And speaking of animals, legendary island painter Pam Ingalls is planning a series of paintings of people with their pets. She’s looking for models. Anyone can show up Sunday, February 13th from 2:30-4 at Pandora’s Box to have a short video of them and their pet taken that she’ll use as inspiration for a painting. 

Is her post an excuse for us to post photos of our pets? You bet.

I was expecting cats and dogs, but people plan on showing up with ducks, pigs, horses, donkeys, and albino ball pythons. 

Do you suppose she’d paint my dog when the kids play dress up with him? 

I doubt this will ever be memorialized in paint and hung in The Hardware Store. 

This weekend is going to be busy. When you’re done getting your ferret’s photo taken, pick up some blueberry bushes. An islander bought 700 of them, and you can go to her house and pick some up. 

You can also see the work of VHS grad Bryon Stewart at the VCA.

On top of that, you need to prepare for Valentine’s Day. There’s a bake sale, or you could buy a massage at the Burton Inn, or get something from Granny’s. 

If you’re looking for  a unique gift, an  islander is offering to handwrite valentines for you in calligraphy. She will also write poems, and I’m not sure if she’ll transcribe poems you’ve written, or write an original poem for you. 

Yeah, maybe she should write the poem instead of me.

And speaking of Granny’s,  we learn that they no longer accept VHS tapes. In lieu of this development, islanders are considering creating neighborhood VHS libraries for freely sharing old copies of Clueless with their community. 

Finally, there was a party at BARC that left the disc gold course littered with nerf bullets. It’s like a clown war zone. Islanders respond to this travesty with serene dignity by asking, “What’s BARC?”

Anna Shomsky
Author: Anna Shomsky

I'm a former teacher and a data engineer living on Vashon Island. My writing has appeared in Five on the Fifth, Women on Writing and on the Post-Culture Podcast. I wrote and produced the radio show Whispers of Vashon for 101.9 KVSH. I’ve had short stories published in the anthologies Island Stories and Chicken Scratchings, as well as through the Open Space Literary Project.

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