Los Angeles Sirens, by Charles Wood

Unisex Pat

My March 22, 2017 post showed three coyotes, a male protector and two other coyotes. Better pictures of those other two coyotes are Mary and Unisex Pat. I’ve decided that it is Mary, Mom and Dad’s daughter. Mary Macbeth I should call her given Rufous and her history with Mom and Dad, now deceased. At best they kicked Mom and Dad out of the territory about four years ago.

But Mary is clearly showing. After all, Unisex Pat is one of Mom and Dad’s grandchildren and so I can’t hold a grudge against Mary. Rufous, if he be there, has proved himself. He does make a good living on a fine piece of property. And he helps with the kids; isn’t out and about, god knows where, instead of being home like he is supposed to be.

Mary

So I have made my peace with Mary. I can’t wait to see more grandchildren!

The LA Siren video was taken to get the howling sound. I wasn’t sure if the coyotes were in the brush until the siren sounded. That day I never did see them. The siren video has three separate videos combined. The first segment is when the siren was far off. There was a lot of howling at that. Oddly, when the emergency vehicle went right by on the road, the coyotes went silent. After the emergency vehicle passed, the coyotes made some more howls. But that last set of howls sounded ineffectual. Why is that?

Maybe it’s that the howling was supposed to keep that big bad whatever away. When it came close they got very still and quiet. I guess they thought that their magic howl didn’t work this time. The thing came closer anyway. So when it left it was sort like a feeble “And don’t come back, ah, whatever.” Am I anthropomorphizing?

No. I’m not. I’m making reasonable guesses from what I know about myself and from what I know about coyotes. Coyotes and humans know what it is to be scared and brave at the same time. And to get still when things look like they could get real bad. There is a symmetry to it all.

Ah, you might say. Poor man. Hasn’t he read Descartes:  “I think, therefore I am.” Animals don’t think, you might say.

I say rubbish. I say  “I am, therefore I think.” I say no organism could ever live and has never lived without a faculty for thought. And so the argument goes. I may be right, you may be right; and we just differ on that principle.

Or maybe, just maybe there is a logic to it all and we might as yet find an idea of “self” for all living things that is clear and intelligible. Maybe then we would get some respect for being investigators of the heart, rooting around for truth by perceiving what situations seem like and how it all feels.

Posting written by Charles Wood. Visit Charles Wood’s website for more coyote photos from LA: Charles Wood. His work is copyrighted and may only be used with his explicit permission.

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