MY great friend Warren ‘Wozza’ Brown, Australia’s finest cartoonist, is never short of a tale to tell. His latest, which happened while he was driving ten-year-old son Oliver Brown to school ‘in the ute’ (actually a vintage Landrover) the other morning, left him feeling not quite so ‘cocky’. In your own words, Warren . . .
WE CRESTED A HILL to arrive among a flock of sulphur-crested cockatoos and then – WHUMP!! – a sickening thud and a bunch of feathers over the bonnet.
I looked in the rear vision mirror expecting to see a bloodied ball of skittled cocky on the road, but no: we pulled the ute over and I cautiously walked around to the front and there was Cocky – very much alive and trapped somehow in the bull bar!
I couldn’t pull him out. The poor blighter was understandably stressed, his beak snapping like big, black garden shears. Just then our neighbour, Facebooker and fellow Land Rover-er Amanda Whitton and her son Dallas pulled up, very surprised to see our squawking hood ornament.
I eventually managed to coax the cockatoo out and it flew away unharmed, much to everyone’s amazement and delight!
AMANDA WHITTON added a postscript via a Facebook comment: I thought “Oh gee! Typical ‘Landy’ broken down. Then I saw the bird. Honestly, I was so surprised it flew away. It’s one lucky bird!”
And then other Facebook friends weighed in with their own, typically Aussie responses to Wozza’s not-so-cocky-and-bull-bar story . . .
I MAY know someone who hit one of these at Scone but didn’t realise it was squished in the front of the car until THEY stopped at Tenterfield for lunch at which point it was too late and THEY couldn’t extract him. He began to stink by Gympie and was well and truly decomposing by Maryborough (summer and all that!). Needless to say THEY hosed the car the best THEY could but the car had a lovely stench about it for many weeks. Lovely family road trip THAT was! – Sam Cosgrove
I hit a flock of them in my Holden Gemini years ago. One of them cracked the grille dead centre. He left a feathers and blood trail up the bonnet and windscreen, over the roof, continuing from mid boot lid and off the back. It was ghastly. I had to stop and wash the car off. – Brett Nicholson
You had to wash your car! My heart bleeds for you (not!) –Tanya Currah Brown
OMG, that is sooooo wonderfully Australian!! – Paolo Totaro
Lucky for both you and Plucky the Cockatoo, usually they kamikaze themselves through the grille and obliterate the radiator/AC condenser, makes one hell of a mess. Don’t ask me how I know! – Pablo E. Laredo
Once came over a hill out west at around 120+ and hit a flock of galahs. Cracked the windscreen, busted the aerial and the side mirrors and all I could see out of the rearview mirror was a vortex of pink, white and grey –Rob Maccoll
Once hit a bloody big eagle at about 100kph. Smashed windscreen, but eagle shook itself and flew off.- Robert Fenney
We have a restaurant here; we cook your road kill, from your grille to ours. Good candidate! – Adrienne Fuller
And of course, being Oz there had to be at least ONE off-colour remark to round off the reactions:
Surely that’s not the first time u had a cocky bird in your ute?! LOL – Fefe Gabor