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How to Put Big Bird Into a Headlock

Hate your job? Has the boss just “voluntold” you for another committee with the world’s most annoying colleague? Have you been seriously considering the very real possibility of death from boredom during a meeting? So you are thinking about a career change but not sure what? Well, I have something that might help you brainstorm new and exciting career options that I trust you have not considered. Who knows, it might just give you a whole new perspective on your current job.

So here is a funny video to get a bit closer to the end of the work week. It’s from “Dirty Jobs“, a popular program from the Discovery Channel where Mike Rowe the host, explores careers by doing strange, messy, and sometimes just down right dirty jobs. Whiles these jobs are not considered “dream jobs” for many, they serve a necessary function for our society. Examples of the strange and dirty jobs that Mike has had to do include:

  • Shark repellent and shark suit tester
  • Worm Dung Farmer
  • Roadkill Cleaners
  • Chinatown Garbage Collector
  • Sewer Inspector
  • Salmon Carcass Counter
  • Rat Exterminator & Mosquito Control
  • Snake Researcher
  • Concrete Stamper
  • Penguin Keeper
  • Bloodworm Digger

In this episode, Mike visits an ostrich farm where he has to catch an ostrich get it back into his pen. This only problem to this task is that “big bird” has plans of his own. Observe the “technique” and maybe you can try this at your next meeting.

[flashvideo filename=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yqAlHjPq_J8 /]

My Crappy Experience With Birdzilla

Actually watching this clip reminded me of a time when I was at an ostrich farm just off of Prince George in Northern BC, Canada. I was technician and went out with my assistant to an ostrich farm to do some work. The farmer who was very proud of his birds invited us for a quick tour. And since it was slow day, who was I to decline an opportunity to get to know my customer?

So the farmer begins educating me on these birds. He tells that the females are generally very friendly but the males are very aggressive. In fact, males are quite competitive such that anything on two legs is seen as a competing male. Unfortunately, he told me this after I walked into the pen and judging by the way this 7 feet tall, 200 lbs bird was hissing and walking towards me with it’s wing extended, I would have to guess that was the male.

Since I pride myself on my emotional intelligence, I could kind of tell that this male wanted alone time with the female. So no sooner as I turn around and double time it for the gate “Birdzilla” starts to chase me. So here I am breaking the world’s record for the 100m racing out of the pen with Birdzilla hot on my heals. As I leave the enclosure and I take a sharp turn around the corner and with a few more steps close the gate behind me. Birdzilla still in high pursuit follows me around the turn but slips. You see, it had been raining all day and the pen was covered in mud AND ostrich excrement.

Now here is the funny part of the story, just before I closed the gate, I looked back to see the exact moment Birdzilla fell. I watched him do that kind of Scooby Do run before it fell (where they run on the spot before moving like a car burning rubber before peeling out)So it slips and falls crashing to the muddy floor but just as it does it flicks a bunch of mud and poop onto my partner’s face who just happened to be standing directly in line with bird’s flailing feet. When I say a bunch of mud and poop, I am not talking about a little bit. I am talking a portion that can only be scooped up by an ostrich foot (size 18+ quadruple E’s).

So even though I had to ride in the van with my partner for the rest of the day (with windows down), I was able to salvage the time by reminding him the crappy work he does (sorry but I had to). Of course, he retaliated by suggesting that it was not aggression that drove the male to chase me. To that I said, “hey, when you got it, you got it”.