Favorite

The Observer March 31 

The Observer has had eggs on the brain. We turned to the subject last week, asking some friends how many old eggs they’ve found post-Easter. Old eggs equal trouble. Our neighbor reported that her dog had found an aged Easter egg left undiscovered in the yard, ate it and came inside to throw up. This same neighbor has a friend who has a Great Pyrenees. Her name is Clara, and she lives on a farm with goats and chickens up in Goshen. It’s her job to guard the goats and her mistress. However, she has taken advantage of the hens’ habit of laying their eggs all over the place by eating a few before her mistress can get to them. But Clara wants to be loved — especially since she is now sharing space with Snow, a Great Pyrenees delivered to the farm last week by Arkansas Independent Great Pyrenees Rescue. Combined, they are 260-plus pounds and when they start playing, the goats go and hide. Clara, fearful Snow would take some attention away from her and knowing her egg thievery had not been appreciated, left a love offering for her mistress the other evening. She tenderly brought an egg into her house and laid it — well, placed it — unharmed on the rug beside her mistress’ bed. Morning came, her mistress awoke, swung one leg out of bed and, alas, stepped on the egg. Snow, it turns out, saw the chickens as dinner on the run. Pens are now protecting the chickens from the dogs and eggs from premature cracking. Stepping on a fresh egg is better than finding one wedged between a lampshade and the light bulb many months after a rainy Easter. The Observer was invited to an evening garden party in the Delta last week. The hosts and hostesses, whose ancestral blood runs deep in the remnants of the Big Woods, greeted us in their customary high-pitched voices, chattered gaily and flitted from spot to spot. Such party animals! It wasn’t really a garden, but open pine woods where we gathered. It was quite damp, requiring that we wear knee high rubber boots to attend. Still, we were more than entertained. One of the hostesses was a gorgeous gal; we couldn’t take our eyes off her, though we tried to hide the fact that we were staring. Then, one of the men began a flirtation, right before our eyes, with another woman at the gathering. Now, we openly stared. But our story is a sad one. Our lovely Delta hosts, so friendly and lovely, are, like many in the Delta, having a hard time hanging on. The gorgeous Borealis — her garment a vision in chiaroscuro, jet black against her gleaming white cheek — was all dressed up with no place to go. But go she must, because she can’t make a living in that neck of the woods. And who knows how successful she’ll be finding another place or a mate of her class and habit? It’s partially her fault, of course; she’s so particular. And the farm economy is killing off her kind. She needs 200 acres and a man to keep her Delta bloodline alive. Not just any 200 acres, either, but 200 acres of pine savannah. Once, she could have made her own home — the pines in her neighborhood were old, softer and easier to build with. Now she needs help. Borealis is, of course, a red-cockaded woodpecker, and all it took for us to fall in love with her was a visit to Pine City with folks in the Department of Arkansas Heritage and the Nature Conservancy. Fortunately, every time we sell a home, we help Borealis out. A little bit of that tax, which goes to the Natural and Cultural Resources Council, has gone toward keep her vanishing kind alive, by maintaining what habitat is left and acquiring new property to develop into more habitat. Private timber companies are doing their part, too. If a male red-cockaded woodpecker booted out of his clan — only one pair gets to breed — is able to stake out territory in one of the few places left for him to lord over, Borealis could be caught and taken to him. Let’s hope she gets to pass on her looks and happy peeping. What a price we’ve paid for our pine — this beautiful, social little bird. When party animals have no place to party, we’re not having any fun, either.
Favorite

From the ArkTimes store

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

  • Trump launches attack on 'SOBs' of the NFL

    Donald Trump led a rally for Alabama Senate candidate Luther Strange Friday night and the resulting news coverage (if not in our local newspaper) is giving great attention for his rant against the NFL, including but not limited to players who have made political statements by taking a knee during the National Anthem.
    • Sep 23, 2017
  • Driver killed in crash with Maumelle officer

    Maumelle police report the death early this morning of a motorist who crashed head-on with a Maumelle police officer. The officer and two passengers in the other vehicle were injured.
    • Sep 23, 2017
  • Walmart lawyer picked for U.S. attorney in western Arkansas

    Donald Trump has nominated Duane "Dak" Kees,  director of global ethics and compliance at Walmart Stores, to be U.S. attorney for the western district of Arkansas. It has been filled on an interim basis by a career lawyer in the office.
    • Sep 22, 2017
  • More »

Readers also liked…

  • I'm sorry

    I'm sorry we stood by while your generation's hope was smothered by $1.3 trillion in student loan debt, just because you were trying to educate yourselves enough to avoid falling for the snake oil and big talk of a fascist.
    • Nov 17, 2016
  • Show and tell

    The Observer is an advocate of the A+ method of integrating the arts and using creativity to teach across the curriculum, an approach that the Thea Foundation, with help from the Windgate Charitable Foundation, is offering to schools across the state.
    • Feb 25, 2016
  • Yawp

    The Observer has been in a funk lately for a number of reasons: revulsions and slights, both foreign and domestic. We get that way most years as the winter drags on, once the tinsel and colored lights of Christmas drop into the rearview, soon after we come off the New Year's Day hangover.
    • Mar 24, 2016

Most Shared

  • ASU to reap $3.69 million from estate of Jim and Wanda Lee Vaughn

    Arkansas State University announced today plans for spending an expected $3.69 million gift in the final distribution of the estate of Jim and Wanda Lee Vaughn, who died in 2013 and 2015 respectively.
  • Bad health care bill, again

    Wait! Postpone tax reform and everything else for a while longer because the Senate is going to try to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act one more time before September ends and while it can do it with the votes of only 50 senators.
  • Sex on campus

    Look, the Great Campus Rape Crisis was mainly hype all along. What Vice President Joe Biden described as an epidemic of sexual violence sweeping American college campuses in 2011 was vastly overstated.
  • The inadequate legacy of Brown

    LRSD continues to abdicate its responsibility to educate poor black students.

Latest in The Observer

  • Taking one for the team

    The Observer got to the doctor's office the other day. We hate going to the doctor. Loathe is a better word. In the form of a sentence, it would be: "The Observer hates going to the doctor with the same white hot intensity that Trump voters would hate being forced to read the seminal grammar primer, 'The Elements of Style,' by William Strunk Jr. and E.B. White." Yes, it's that bad.
    • Sep 21, 2017
  • The lake house

    The Observer got to the lake over the weekend, courtesy of some friends who rented a place on the water.
    • Sep 14, 2017
  • 13

    The Observer, an office-bound hermit until we were cast back into the hustle of an open newsroom earlier this year, had forgotten how much we'd missed the camaraderie of being forced into joining conversations with your colleagues.
    • Sep 7, 2017
  • More »

Event Calendar

« »

September

S M T W T F S
  1 2
3 4 5 6 7 8 9
10 11 12 13 14 15 16
17 18 19 20 21 22 23
24 25 26 27 28 29 30

Most Viewed

Most Recent Comments

 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation