Awkward Moment

May 6, 2008

Level: Low (Actually, more odd and amusing than awkward)

Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal and House Speaker Pat Murphy stopped at The Gazette today to tout their legislative accomplishments. But before we dug into the meaty details of health care, the leaders shared dead pigeon anecdotes.

Apparently, the Statehouse’s resident nesting Peregrine Falcon catches and eats resident pigeons. As Murphy described it, the falcon snares a pigeon, pins it down by its wings and, well, lunch is served. Trouble is, the pigeon-stuffed falcon then leaves its less-than-appetizing meal remnants on an outdoor balcony just off the House chamber. The presence of these spent pigeons apparently have spoiled the speaker’s plans for a balcony lunch of his own. Understandable.

Gronstal said the falcon occasionally grabs pigeons outside his office window in a cloud of flying feathers. Watching such natural selection has become a pastime.

I was at a loss to comment on any of this. As Murphy described feeding falcons and pigeon peril, I thought about making a crack. “Sounds like budget negotiations,” I could have said. Instead, I just took it all in, and thought, you know, grilled chicken sounds good tonight.

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