Media Musings: Catty Klingon fowl downed Malaysian jet

Editor’s note: This is another in my series of monthly musings on the news, published on the Sunday following the last Saturday of each month, except when it’s not.

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© 2014 Tom Pfeifer

Current as of July 26, 2014

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Artist's rendering of an airliner crashing into a man's forehead

© Can Stock Photo Inc. / Whiteisthecolor

When Malaysia Flight 17 crashed in the Ukraine, the rebels were struck by a lack of blood tainting the wreckage. The passengers, in fact, had been dead several days before the crash, according to Russian media.

We know that isn’t true, of course. What is true is that U.S. President Obama ordered Russian President Putin to down the plane because Swedish scientist Hauteir Hokes, an expert on chemtrails, had proof that airliner exhaust was tainted with government-added mind control substances. The other passengers were collateral damage.

Which may or may not be true. But what is true is that Russia has invaded American homes with feline spies. One blew its cover recently. Kush, a Russian blue, attacked its owners, Teresa and James Gregory, in their Florida home. The attack was so vicious that the Gregorys retreated to their bedroom, where they called 911. Kush was taken away. According to mainstream media accounts, the cat was taken to an animal shelter for 10 days of observation before being returned to the couple. My impeccable sources, however, tell me that the so-called “animal shelter” was actually a re-education center run by the Russian mob.

Mainstream media, of course, is part of the cover-up, which is why they failed to disclose the all-important occupations of Teresa and James Gregory. My sources tell me they work on a supersensitive and super-secret NSA human behavior-modification program and have been known to bring documents home with them, where Kush had easy access. They have stopped that practice and, once the Russians released Kush from the re-education center, the Gregorys had her sexual organs removed as punishment.

Mainstream media, while intimating the Ukrainian rebels are demented, also are covering up the fact that the rebels suffer from dementia. The proof is in the pictures from the crash site, where the rebels are pictured wandering around the wreckage strewn with rotting corpses and making no attempt to cover their noses. Researchers have discovered that a decreased sense of smell is an early indication of dementia. The researchers used scratch and sniff tests for their studies, but crash and sniff tests are just as effective.

What really stinks, however, is the Malaysians shot down their own plane. They did so because most of the passengers were Dutch. Having the geographic knowledge of the average American, Malaysian authorities thought the Dutch are from Denmark, because, after all, both start with D. Denmark, of course, is the largest pork-consuming nation on the planet. Malaysians eat no pork. They do, however, eat a lot of chicken, which is on its way to outpacing pork as the most consumed animal. According to my sources, by taking out the Dutch, they hoped to drive up the demand for chicken and capitalize on the growing chicken industry.

The real culprit, of course, is not the chickens. It’s Kush and his cushy friends. Ever wonder why cat videos are so popular on the Internet? Mind control. We’re naturally drawn to cats, one University of Kent philosopher proposes, because they look like human babies—“their big eyes, smallish noses, and dome-shaped heads trigger the evolutionary nurturing instincts that we have evolved toward babies.” This makes them perfect foils for the sort of mind control the Gregorys have been working on at the NSA. When Kush realized she and her kind were being used, she rebelled.

But Kush’s rebellion comes too late. The Internet mind-control program has been fully implemented. Scopes confirms this, as well as confirming that Ukrainian rebels are actually the descendants of Klingons who crash-landed here 300,000 years ago. We refer to them even today as Neanderthals. The destruction of MH17 was an evolutionary act. Still reeling from being abandoned by their ancestors, they believed they were shooting down the mother ship.

You’re reading this on the Internet, aren’t you? Then it must be true.

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Sources

Associated Press. “Couple bringing crazed cat home after calling 911.” WTOP. 19 July 2014. http://www.wtop.com/681/3664344/Crazed-Cat

“Countries Compared by Lifestyle > Food and drink > Pork > Consumption per capita. International Statistics at NationMaster.com.” USDA Census of Agriculture. Aggregates compiled by NationMaster. Accessed 27 July 2014. http://www.nationmaster.com/country-info/stats/Lifestyle/Food-and-drink/Pork/Consumption-per-capita

Demirjian, Karoun. “Russians have many theories about the MH17 crash. One involves fake dead people.” The Washington Post. 22 July 2014. http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/russians-have-many-theories-about-the-mh17-crash-one-involves-fake-dead-people/2014/07/22/9a1c5ec9-11b6-4384-b585-53fff62e5779_story.html

Ferdman, Roberto A. “The coming global domination of chicken.” The Washington Post. 14 July 2014. http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2014/07/14/the-coming-global-domination-of-chicken/

Kunkle, Fredrick. “Alzheimer’s researchers hunt for new tools to identify disease’s onset.” The Washington Post. 13 July 2014. http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/alzheimers-researchers-hunt-for-new-tools-to-identify-diseases-onset/2014/07/12/d458222e-092a-11e4-bbf1-cc51275e7f8f_story.html

Stein, Perry. “Why Do Cats Run the Internet? A Scientific Explanation.” New Republic. 1 March 2012. http://www.newrepublic.com/article/politics/101283/cats-internet-memes-science-aesthetics

Imperial politics: right or wrong for the country?

From this morning’s Washington Post:

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid smiling.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.

“Rather than using the 10-day recess for the Independence Day holiday to reach a deal with (Senate Minority Leader Mitch) McConnell, (Senate Majority Leader Harry) Reid on Monday escalated the fight, warning that continued delaying tactics by Republicans would prompt him to unilaterally change long-standing rules about debate time.” (Emphasis added.)

This comes on the heels of actions taken by President Obama to sidestep Congress on a number of issues. Republicans say many of these actions are unconstitutional and House Speaker John Boehner has threatened to sue the president over the issue.

My question is this:

Media Musings: Throw the bums back in

Editor’s note: This is another in my series of monthly musings on the news, published on the Sunday following the last Saturday of each month, except when it’s not.

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© 2014 Tom Pfeifer

Current as of June 28, 2014

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Eagle clutching American flag with an I Voted sticker on it, perched on a shelf of American history booksA Seattle anesthesiologist had his license suspended because he sent nearly 250 sexually explicit texts during surgeries. He probably will run for public office.

In Maryland, you can’t run for office unless you have skeletons in your closet. On the ballot this month was a state House delegate who was convicted of driving a car and a boat while drunk; a county official accused of misspending, plagiarism, and assault; and a state senator who was censured by colleagues for using his office for private gain.

My favorite though is the state Senate candidate who is on probation for breaking election laws—and may have his probation revoked for running for office.

General Motors is recalling 29,000 Cruze model Chevys because of faulty airbags. But we don’t recall U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz and his 434 fellow members of Congress because they are faulty airbags.

Oh sure, there are the exceptions. Rabid Republican Rep. Eric Cantor of Virginia, then the House majority leader, was trounced from the right by an unknown Tea Partier. And most of the Maryland scoundrels lost their bids for election or re-election.

But on average, 90 percent of members of Congress who seek re-election win. Some hope the tide will turn this year. After all, 22 percent of Americans polled by Gallup in April believe members of Congress do not deserve to be reelected, the lowest percentage recorded in an election year—except for January when the number was 17 percent. But that’s Congress as a whole. When asked about their specific incumbent, 50 percent support their member of Congress’s reelection.

For comparison, in 1992, 29 percent of Americans believed members of Congress as a whole should be reelected. Eighty-eight percent of them were.

Why the disconnect? Scientists have found the answer, as scientists always do. It was found in the 1946 Three Stooges movie The Three Troubledoers, when Moe asks Larry and Curley, “Are we mice or men?” Larry and Curley’s answer: “Mice!” And so we are.

Using electric-shock therapy, researchers proved the theory of learned helplessness. First they enclosed a group of mice in a room with no chance of escape and lit them up. Then they opened a door and electrified the room again. While most of the mice said, “I’m out of here,” 20 percent endured the shock in a whimpering ball rather than take the escape. The mice acted as if nothing they could do would change their situation, and so they did nothing.

Voting for an incumbent under the banner, “Throw the bums out,” is learned helplessness. Possibly worse is not voting at all, which is the learned-helplessness course taken by more than 46 percent of the voting age population in the 2012 election.

What’s an electorate to do? We could follow Pope Francis’ lead and excommunicate the mafiosi. That would only knock out about 30 percent of the Congress, but that’s still a lot more than we do through elections.

Or we could send them in search of public restrooms in DC’s Metro system. They’re there, but they’re hidden. It took a Washington Post reporter 20 minutes to find a useable one at the L’Enfant Plaza Metro station—with the station manager’s help. Members of Congress have perfected the art of investigating crap and getting lost in the process. If they’re stalled in the stalls they can do the country no harm. There are mirrors for reflected selfies but there’s no wi-fi by which to send them. And every day would be a travel day.

Or we can be anesthetized by sexually explicit selfies that no longer shock us and vote the bums back in. I’ll pick you up in my Chevy Cruze on the way to the polls.

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 Sources

“Three Stooges Quotes.” The Three Stooges Online Filmography. Accessed 28 June 2014. http://www.threestooges.net/quotes

Associated Press. “GM recalling more than 29,000 Cruzes to fix air bags.” The Washington Post. 26 June 2014. http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/gm-recalling-nearly-29000-cruzes-to-fix-air-bags/2014/06/26/6a9d79c2-fd9c-11e3-b1f4-8e77c632c07b_story.html

Bever, Lindsey. “This might be a first: A Seattle doctor is suspended for sexting during surgery.” The Washington Post. 10 June 2014. http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2014/06/10/this-might-be-a-first-a-seattle-doctor-is-suspended-for-texting-and-sexting-during-his-surgeries/

Fisher, Marc. “In Maryland, it’s electable scoundrels vs. unelectable rogues.” The Washington Post. 24 June 2014. http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/dc-politics/in-maryland-its-electable-scoundrels-vs-unelectable-rogues/2014/06/24/5ea5ba28-fc00-11e3-8176-f2c941cf35f1_story.html

Jones, Jeffrey M. “Ahead of Midterms, Anti-Incumbent Sentiment Strong in U.S.” Gallup Politics. 14 May 2014. http://www.gallup.com/poll/168998/ahead-midterms-anti-incumbent-sentiment-strong.aspx

Kim, Meeri. “Why are some depressed, others resilient? Scientists home in one part of the brain.” The Washington Post. 5 June 2014. http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/why-are-some-depressed-others-resilient-scientists-home-in-one-part-of-the-brain/2014/06/05/db638498-e83f-11e3-a86b-362fd5443d19_story.html

McDonald, Michael. “2012 General Election Turnout Rates.” George Mason University. Last updated 22 July 2013. http://elections.gmu.edu/Turnout_2012G.html

Pullella, Philip. “Pope Francis lambastes mobsters, says mafiosi ‘are excommunicated.’” The Washington Post. 21 June 2014. http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/pope-francis-lambastes-mobsters-says-mafiosi-are-excommunicated/2014/06/21/4384dfcc-f97a-11e3-8aa9-dad2ec039789_story.html

St. Martin, Victoria. “On the hunt for the elusive Metro restroom.” The Washington Post. 7 June 2014. http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/trafficandcommuting/on-the-hunt-for-the-elusive-metro-restroom/2014/06/07/6f634cd2-e67e-11e3-afc6-a1dd9407abcf_story.html

Consistent Voice Communications, LLCTom@YourConsistentVoice.com

#ThinkBeforeYouWrite

Roll Call logo.

 

 

This was the lead in a Roll Call story posted yesterday evening:

“It’s a tale as old as time: From the moment a high-profile terrorist suspect is snagged, the partisan fight is renewed over whether terrorism suspects belong in the Guantanamo Bay detention facility in Cuba.”

Really? As old as time? 9/11 was only 13 years ago. Hardly as old as time. And no editor caught this?

I know English is hard, but it’s not that hard.

Media Musings: In fine bullying fettle

Editor’s note: This is another in my series of monthly musings on the news, published on the Sunday following the last Saturday of each month, except when it’s not.

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© 2014 Tom Pfeifer

Current as of May 31, 2014

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Old white man sticking out tongue with thumbs in ears and fingers wiggling

© Can Stock Photo Inc. / atic12

Did your out-of-pocket expenses skyrocket along with your premiums once Obamacare went into effect? Mine did too. Obamacare has forced us to find alternative means to remain healthy and keep our healthcare costs down.

On my end, of course, I could quit smoking and drinking. But that ain’t gonna happen. I could cut back on my binge eating. But I still hold out hopes of coming out of the closet and slamming grown men for pay as a professional football player. You have to eat big and be big for that. In the 1960s, Roger Brown of the Detroit Lions was the NFL’s only 300-plus-pound player. Now they’re a dime a dozen, which is how many years ago offensive lineman Aaron Gibson became the game’s first 400-pound player.

I’m halfway to achieving my goal. I’m offensive. Now I just need to become a lineman.

My offensiveness, I’ve discovered, is what will keep me healthy. A study published earlier this month in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences determined there are long-term health benefits to bullying. Bullies, it turns out, have lower rates of cardiovascular and metabolic diseases. Bullying is the new yoga. Therefore, the remainder of this column is a prescription for elevating my health. Most of the bullied-to-come deserve it anyway.

My dad used to say that the only way to deal with a bully was to bully back, so let’s start with that worthless piece of crap, L.A. Clippers owner Donald Sterling. I’m coming over and, with the help of my hefty NFL friends, I’m going to hang you by your testicles from an NBA-regulation hoop and have the boys dunk their balls on your boys, kneeing you in the face on the way up. Then we’ll see who owns who, you demented hog.

I’m sorry. Was that too over the top? Nah, I didn’t think so either.

Maybe we’ll send Joni Ernst over to tame Sterling. Ernst is running for the Republican nomination to the U.S. Senate in Iowa. She was relatively unknown until she ran a television ad proclaiming, “I grew up castrating hogs on an Iowa farm,” and promised to “make ’em squeal” in Washington. The ad went viral on YouTube and Ernst went from an unknown to a contender in weeks. But she’s still not a sure thing. If you want to win, Joni, take a detour to the City of Angels and make this pig squeal. That video would assuredly go viral.

Oh, I feel so diabolically metabolically healthy!

It’s apparently politically incorrect to bully women these days, at least judging from the mainstream media coverage in the aftermath of Elliot Rodger gunning down pretty women at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He gunned them down because pretty women routinely dissed him. They dissed him because they were pretty and he was a creep.

But a particular female circuit court judge in Montgomery County, Maryland, is just aching for an atomic wedgie. When now-judge Audrey Creighton was a lowly public defender, she represented Rickley Joshua Senning, an already convicted violent felon less than half her age. I don’t know if it was lust at first sight, but lovers they became. That is, until he surprised her by violently kidnapping her in an apparent drunken rage. Now one may argue that Creighton has been bullied enough by Senning and I shouldn’t pile on. But when you’re that stupid, the wedgies keep coming. Besides, my cardio needs the workout. (Senning, no doubt, is as healthy as a racehorse. He also undoubtedly knows that “bully” was derived from the 1500s Dutch word for “sweetheart.” I slap because I love.)

NASA deserves to be cyberbullied for hyping a giraffe that NASA said would spit out hundreds of camels an hour. Instead, sky watchers got skunked. Let me explain. The May 23 Camelopardalids meteor shower was predicted to rival the prestigious Perseid meteor shower, with more than 200 meteors streaking across the sky each hour. Oh, yeah, NASA did mention the storm could be the dud that it was, but it was just a whisper among the hype. They called it the Camelopardalids, a scientific name that contains a camel, not a giraffe, but still tried to persuade us they called it that because the meteors will appear to spit from the giraffe constellation. Astute observers will note the scientific name also ends with a lid on it, which is what happened to the shower. And they wonder why geeks get picked on.

That’s enough of a workout for today. Obamacare is not going to get any cheaper and I need to save some bully medicine for a future dose. Fortunately, I’ll never run out in my lifetime.

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Sources

Babb, Kent. “Ex-NFL linemen discover that weighing 300 pounds or more is no asset in life after football.” The Washington Post. 28 May 2014. http://www.washingtonpost.com/sports/ex-nfl-linemen-discover-that-weighing-300-pounds-or-more-is-no-asset-in-life-after-football/2014/05/28/032d5f04-e5ba-11e3-afc6-a1dd9407abcf_story.html

Chappell, Bill. “Tonight’s New ‘Giraffes’ Meteor Shower Could Be A Great One.” NPR. 23 May 2014. http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2014/05/23/315130886/tonight-s-new-meteor-shower-could-be-a-great-one-nasa-says

Medina, Jennifer. “Campus Killings Set Off Anguished Conversation About the Treatment of Women.” New York Times. 26 May 2014. http://www.nytimes.com/2014/05/27/us/campus-killings-set-off-anguished-conversation-about-the-treatment-of-women.html

McCoy, Terrence. “Donald Sterling blames woman for his own racial comments: ‘I was baited.’” The Washington Post. 12 May 2014. http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2014/05/12/donald-sterling-apologizes-for-racist-comments-blames-woman-for-baiting-him/

Morse, Dan. “Montgomery police seek suspect for allegedly abducting a judge from home where they lived.” The Washington Post. 23 May 2014. http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/crime/montgomery-police-seek-suspect-for-allegedly-abducting-a-judge-from-home-where-they-lived/2014/05/23/09217fba-e29c-11e3-810f-764fe508b82d_story.html

Rucker, Philip, and Balz, Dan. “How Joni Ernst’s ad about ‘castrating hogs’ transformed Iowa’s U.S. Senate race.” The Washington Post. 11 May 2014. http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/how-joni-ernsts-ad-about-castrating-hogs-transformed-iowas-us-senate-race/2014/05/11/c02d1804-d85b-11e3-95d3-3bcd77cd4e11_story.html

Sullivan, Gail. “The health benefits of bullying.” The Washington Post. 13 May 2014. http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2014/05/13/when-bullying-is-good-for-kids/

 

Consistent Voice Communications, LLCTom@YourConsistentVoice.com

Earth Day musings: A natural reconnection

I’m an outdoorsman. At least I used to be. My earliest memories are fuzzy visions of recreating in the great outdoors. I was a Boy Scout and my dad was our scoutmaster. Dad insisted that the troop camp one weekend a month throughout the year, except for June and July, which was reserved for a two-week Scout camp. Then there were the family camping trips up and down the East Coast. Later, my friends and I threw a tent and sleeping bags in the car trunk for road trips to scenic spots.

Terry F. Liercke, president of the Audubon Society of Northern Virginia, led a Nature/Bird Walk.

Terry F. Liercke led the Nature/Bird Walk. Click on the photo for more images on my Pinterest page.

I carried on that tradition when I began my own family. My daughters were in diapers and barely crawling when I began taking them on family camping trips. We camped, hiked, snow skied, and water skied throughout California. When we moved to Virginia, we explored the Shenandoah Mountains and Valley by foot and canoe, camped at Pohick Bay Regional Park, and kayaked off Chincoteague Island.

But somehow my daughters aged and so did I. Somehow my outdoor excursions became limited to performing yard work. I had lost my connection to nature. Daughter Clare pushed me back with a recent gift of AMC’s Best Day Hikes Near Washington, D.C. On Saturday, I took my first guided nature walk in years.

Our guide was Terry F. Liercke, president of the Audubon Society of Northern Virginia. Our venue was Mason Neck State Park, which was celebrating its 2014 Eagle Festival. Initially, I was disappointed because our hike was to be along the Bay View Trail, the trail I had hiked the week before. I wanted to hike the Eagle Spur Trail. It was, after all, the Eagle Festival and I wanted to see a bald eagle, or two, or three! But I grudgingly plodded along with about a dozen others.

It wasn’t long before I realized I was seeing the trail with new eyes. I learned, for example, that oak trees, including the native oaks of this mature hardwood forest, can host 534 species of moths and butterflies. The bird boxes in the freshwater marsh were erected for the wood duck. Mayapples and spring beauties adorn the forest floor. Blueberry bushes grow in wild abundance. Butterflies and bees avoid azaleas because they are non-native plants. Beaver and Canada geese live in harmony, or at least the goose we saw napping on a beaver lodge. A pair of osprey flew overhead as we approached the shore of Belmont Bay. But no eagles, until one of our group called out, pointing to a spot above the early spring’s leafless canopy, “Is that a bald eagle?” It was. Eagle Festival mission accomplished.

Bald eagle flies over hikers.

Bald eagle flies over hikers. Click on the photo for more images on my Pinterest page.

One would think it would be difficult to visit the park and fail to see an eagle. The Mason Neck peninsula juts into the Potomac River about 20 miles south of Washington, D.C. Like Italy, the peninsula is shaped like a boot. Mason Neck State Park comprises the top of the boot along Belmont Bay. The Mason Neck National Wildlife Refuge is the boot’s sole on the banks of the Potomac River. It was the first national refuge created specifically to provide bald eagle habitat. Gunston Hall (home of founding father George Mason) and Pohick Bay Regional Park run up the Achilles tendon bordering Gunston Cove and Pohick Cove, respectively. Together, the four entities provide wildlife with 6,000 acres of protected land in which to thrive. Dozens of bald eagles call the peninsula home. One of them had to fly overhead.

Caroline "CobraCaroline" Seitz explains how the eastern rat snake she is holding is a bald eagle food source.

Caroline “CobraCaroline” Seitz explains how the eastern rat snake she is holding is a bald eagle food source. Click on the photo for more images on my Pinterest page.

And one did. Our nature walk and mission concluded, I was drawn to the Big Tent by the energetic voice of “CobraCaroline” enthusing her young audience with a show-and-tell of native reptiles. Caroline Seitz owns Reptiles Alive! LLC, which performs live animal shows throughout the Greater Washington, D.C., area. In addition to being an entertainer, Seitz also is a licensed wildlife rehabilitator. Along with her enthralled youngsters, I learned that the eastern rat snake is among the bald eagles’ taste treats, although 90 percent of an eagle’s diet consists of fish. I also learned that the eastern snapping turtle can grow to 75 pounds. Happily, even I can outrun a turtle.

Someday, I may have to. Because I’m back to nature. Anyone want to mow my lawn while I’m hiking the great outdoors?

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If you go:

The park is in southern Fairfax County, about 20 miles from Washington, D.C. Access to the park is via U.S. 1, then five miles east on Route 242 (Gunston Road) to the park entrance.

The address is 7301 High Point Road, Lorton, VA 22079-4010. Phone: 703-339-2385703-339-2385. Email: MasonNeck@dcr.virginia.gov

Passenger vehicle parking fees: $4 weekdays; $5 weekends.

There are no campgrounds at Mason Neck State Park, but camping is available at nearby Pohick Bay Regional Park.

© 2014 Consistent Voice Communications, LLC ♦ Tom@YourConsistentVoice.com

A walk in the park

For my 60th birthday, daughter Clare presented me with AMC’s Best Day Hikes Near Washington, D.C. It’s not the first time she suggested I go take a hike.

Sign showing Bay View Trail 0.2 miles ahead.

Click on the photo to see more photos on my Pinterest page.

On Sunday, I opted to hike the Bay View Trail at Mason Neck State Park in Lorton, VA, just a 25-minute drive from my home. Mason Neck is just a hop, skip, and jump from Gunston Hall, George Mason’s home. (George Mason was the father of the Bill of Rights, for those of you wondering.) It’s also a hop, skip, and jump from Pohick Bay Regional Park. I’ve visited Gunston Hall and camped at Pohick Bay, but somehow never meandered down the road to Mason Neck. It’s been on my list for years because of its reputation for bald eagle sightings, but I needed to be prodded by Clare to get me there.

Everyone else in the Greater D.C. area were crowded into the pathways around the Tidal Basin for the Cherry Blossom Festival, so Mason Neck was relatively quiet. Alas, the bald eagles were also sparse, but then I hiked a trail on the other side of the park from the eagle trails.

Next Saturday, the park is hosting its 2014 Eagle Festival from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Maybe I’ll see you there.

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