The Old Man and The Owl
IT wasn't the same anymore.
The Old Man heard The Owl everywhere he went, and it bothered him. He didn’t particularly like having an owl earworm wherever he went. If he was by the lake, The Owl sounded off. If he was near the street, memories of hoot wafted through his brain.
He didn’t dislike The Owl, but The Old Man didn’t think the bird was wise the way it was portrayed in literature.
Why were they wise?
Who said they were wise?
What’s wise about asking “Who?” all day long?
One morning, however, The Old Man became perturbed at the hooter. He couldn’t sleep, and it was The Owl who kept asking that question, “Who?” in the wee hours of the morning. This early morning was no different than the several thousand mornings prior to this except The Old Man couldn’t sleep. The Old Man couldn’t have a decent conversation with The Owl to negotiate a peaceful treaty, at least none that would make sense to eavesdroppers. Even then, they might consider putting The Old Man in a home, a place he would only go if he was really old.
So, The Old Man did what Old Men do when they’re frustrated: they throw fists into the air. This time the fists were aimed at The Owl. It didn’t matter that The Owl couldn’t see him through the wall nor did it matter if he could, but The Old Man felt better about making the gesture.
As if on cue, The Owl went silent.
Or maybe he moved to bug someone else on another block in an another city, someone younger and one with more tolerance for incessant one question bird calls during early morning hours.
Or perhaps it was time for The Owl’s breakfast.
While never admitting it publicly, The Old Man would soon miss The Owl even if it did annoy him so. That’s just how old friends are sometimes.