By Jerry Guarino
David was talking to a particularly cute young woman at his favorite franchise coffee bar. But let me digress a moment. As you know, David is that computer science major who used his engineering skills to design an automatic bird feeder that not only recognized the bird, but also provided their preferred food and kept squirrels out with a diabolical program that guaranteed a squirrel would never return. To be fair, David posted a warning in 300-point font “No squirrels allowed” with an accompanying 500 hundred-word disclaimer to avoid any lawsuits that may occur.
Not that David needed any help getting dates. He had the casual good looks of a surfer, perfect teeth and a well-proportioned six-foot frame. Although he was technically a geek, no one would have guessed; he looked more like a graduate student in literature. But being the precise, analytical person that he was, the bird feeder more or less guaranteed a subtle and inoffensive way to have a conversation with the opposite sex. Coeds would sidle up to him, looking over his shoulder to the laptop screen with pictures and sounds of blue jays, robins and nuthatches. Inevitably, they would start the conversation with a sound usually reserved when seeing puppies.
“Oh, that’s so cute. Is that a movie clip?” said the 5’9” brunette with jeans, ugh boots and crème colored sweater. David turned and smiled. “No, it’s a live feed from my place.” Well, I won’t bore you with the details, but suffice it to say that after about a half hour, the woman was convinced she had found that all too rare quality in a man, genuine innocence. David never divulged his methodology to any friends or even family; that might put an end to his understated masterpiece.
Ninety-four times out of a hundred (we saw the statistics), the woman would want to visit the apartment and see for herself, partly to confirm David’s claim that he designed and built the best bird feeder, but also to learn more about her new love interest. Since birds feed mostly at dawn and dusk, David had woman asking to spend time at his home during sunrises and sunsets, enhancing the romance. But you can’t just stand next to the feeder; birds won’t come close. No, you have to view from the second floor of his bedroom, meticulously cleaned and fresh. New age music and scented candles (unlit for the moment) completed the ambiance.
“Is that a blue jay?” said Karen. “Yes, you see most of them in April, their mating season” replied David. “Look, two more birds. What are they?” David looked closely. “Red breasted nuthatches. They travel in small groups, sometimes in pairs. See how the male preens the female while she’s eating.” As the sun disappeared over the hilltop, Karen put her arms around David and kissed him.
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