Location: Seattle, Washington, United States

What you have here is an old guy. In education for 30 years, started teaching elementary, ended as library and media director of community college. I've enjoyed mountain climbing, sports car rallying, was pipe major of a bagpipe band, played guitar and sang during the folk revival, walking and hiking later in life. Now fairly sedentary. Enjoy reading, esp. mysteries and fantasy, but my reading is pretty eclectic. Enjoy movies, giving Netflix a workout.

Saturday, July 03, 2004

I took some time out yesterday to watch a very fine documentary film. My wife had caught just the end of it on television. She looked it up in our library catalog and ordered it. The film is entitled PALE MALE and is about a red-tailed hawk who came to live in Central Park in New York, something that had never been done before. The food source was plentiful. There must be enough pigeons for a whole herd of hawks. He attracted a large following when he arrived a little over ten years ago. More people were attracted when a female showed up the following year. They gathered to watch the two mate and later on when three chicks were born. They were born 120 feet above the park on a ledge of a building where Barbara Streisand had been turned down from buying a condo. Woody Allen was a neighbor and they often landed on the railing of the balcony outside his condo. The worry of those who watched then became 1) when would they fly and 2) would they fly safely. The fledglings had only one chance to learn between the time they left the condominium ledge and reached the ground below. Since that time the red-tailed hawk named Pale Man has had two other mates and a total of nineteen chicks. The first two females have died. Aside from the story of this bird, there is the accompanying story of the people who assembled below to watch, making friends, worrying about each other, showing up as early as 4:30 in the morning for fear that the fledglings would fly before they were present to see it happen. There is some wonderful photography of the hawks flying and soaring taken from above. Check your library to see if they have a copy. And if you are really interested and they don't have a copy in your library system, remember inter-library loan. They should be able to find it somewhere so you can see this remarkable film.


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