The Great Spaghetti Mystery

Out in the boonies, one thing you sort of get used to is having wild critters around. Some of them you work to keep out of your stuff, and some you just pay a tithe not to get more destructive.

Like the Mexican Jays. A lot of people call them bluebirds because they’re blue…birds. Actually I guess bluebirds is a pretty good name for them.

Anyway, the bluebirds come in raucous flocks, and they’ll steal anything remotely edible. It’s almost pointless trying to keep a bird feeder for the finches and the songbirds, because the bluebirds will empty it in an hour. One thing I noticed when I first moved here was that they were constantly raiding the dogs’ bowl. They couldn’t eat the dog kibble but seemed to recognize it as food, so they’d steal it and hide it. Got to where every box that a bird could conceivably get to was stuffed with old dry dog food.

That behavior started tapering off about a year and a half ago, for no apparent reason. I was relieved because, being deep in my period of penurious solitude, I begrudged them the dog food. But then a new phenomenon began, that nobody’s ever been able to explain.

Spaghetti started showing up in the damndest places. Every box, every pipe on the barn shelf, every hole where anybody could ever possibly stuff spaghetti was stuffed with frickin’ spaghetti.

And some where nobody could have. I went looking for an ammo can where I kept some spare .45 reloads, my ready-ammo cabinet having been depleted. I opened the can, lifted a cleaning rag and on top of the ammo boxes – spaghetti. I have no idea how it got there.

The weird thing about it is that we’re not missing any spaghetti. The only bulk spaghetti we have on the place is sealed in a food bucket. I checked – it’s fine. And I never see birds flying around carrying spaghetti.

Some weeks ago M took his old Jeep to the city to get it running. He took the body tub off the frame, and then sent me an email with this photo:


Spaghetti.

About Joel

You shouldn't ask these questions of a paranoid recluse, you know.
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9 Responses to The Great Spaghetti Mystery

  1. Weetabix says:

    Maybe God has revamped the manna concept…

  2. I think I would be looking at the rodent family for the culprit not the bird family given the spot where this was found.

    Yet no one is missing any? How very odd…….

  3. suek says:

    Isn’t there a mouse that stashes stuff? I have a memory tickling the back of my mind, but can’t quite pull it out…

    The intriguing question for me is where is the spaghetti coming from? who’s missing the spaghetti? Maybe some long time ago camper who left a package of it?

    We live on a hill, with a driveway alongside that goes to a house on the hill in back of us. At one time we also had a Dobe, and one day, I was in the back yard, looked over the edge of the property and there was the dog (very orignally called “Dobe”) coming up the hill carrying a five pound bag of dog food in his mouth. Unopened. Top still neatly folded over, and providing a nice secure place for him to grip. I have _no_ idea where it came from, but I visualize some poor housewife standing looking at a garage (probably) shelf muttering to herself “I _know_ I bought dogfood!!”. This dog was ours because of his ability to jump a 6 foot chain link fence, by the way.

  4. suek says:

    This jay?:

    http://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Western_Scrub-Jay/id

    or this one:

    http://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Mexican_Jay/id

    We lived in Michigan for a couple of years, and had an oak tree right outside the kitchen window. I was amazed at how many acorns the resident blue jay (eastern type) could eat – whole! I didn’t see how he could even get off the ground when he was finished – but of course, he did!

  5. Joel says:

    Suek,

    Looks more like the Western Scrub Jay you linked. I appear to have misidentified them. What a shock.

  6. Joel says:

    GL, I wouldn’t be surprised if it were packrats or something along those lines, except that whatever is doing it isn’t nesting at all and doesn’t appear to be eating any of the spaghetti. It’s more bird-like behavior, but I never see birds doing it. I saw the jays stealing and stashing dogfood all the time. And I truly do wonder where the damned pasta is coming from.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Two jobs ago, the explantion we had for those difficult to explain things was The Ghost of Abbie Hoffmann did it. Squirrels can pack away enormous quantities of nuts into attics and old Dodge Darts(so that they fall out from under the dash on you at 3 Ay-Emm)..

  8. suek says:

    Chipmunks store stuff too…

    But the question still remains – where did the the spaghetti come _from_!!

To the stake with the heretic!