Tag Archives: geese

Birds part deux

Four hundred years ago — okay, more like 12 — I attended a writing conference at Craigsville Beach on Cape Cod.

One of our assignments was to come up with a new scenario for a movie using only the items found in our hotel room as inspiration.

Now, my hotel was rather rustic (translation: cheap).  The wallpaper had tiny geese flying in vee’s across a yellow, late evening sky.  It was ugly, but I used it.

My idea:   What if two birdwatchers — one a noted expert, the other a novice — accidentally kill a rare bird that they are admiring?  Horrified, they try to cover up the accident in a variety of ways, all of which go terribly awry.

Hilarity ensues.

I pictured Dudley Moore as the lead. (It was 12 years ago.)  I thought it was a pretty funny idea, but maybe too niche-y for Hollywood.

I mean, who would do a movie about birdwatching?

Fast-forward to 2011.  Steve Martin, Jack Black and Owen Wilson are starring in the new movie The Big Year.  Take a look at the trailer:

What you can’t really tell from this clip is that these three men are avid birdwatchers…competing at a prestigious birdwatching event!

See?  Someone actually made a film about birdwatching, and even they think it’s too niche-y to use in the marketing.

I was so ahead of my time.

P.O.V.

The geese.

No one had considered their side of the story — or given them any air time — until last night on Weekend Update.

And damn, was it funny.

One year ago, Captain Sully Sullenberger and his crew safely landed their US Airways jetliner in the Hudson River after striking a flock of geese five minutes after take off from LaGuardia.   Immediately following the incident, another US Airways pilot [cast member Jason Sudeikis] appeared on “Saturday Night Live,”  filled with sarcasm and envy that no one was honoring him for successfully landing his flight on the runway…like you’re supposed to.

Let’s face it — he had a point…albeit a bitter one.

Last night, a year after the tragedy, Larry the Goose had the spotlight to remember his fallen comrades in a parody of the name recitation ritual that is performed at the 9/11 Memorial.  Kinda wrong….but since no one actually died on the Hudson River, I’m assuming people gave this a pass, especially once they heard the goose names being listed, including:

Goose Springsteen

Ganderson Cooper

Geese Witherspoon

Honk Williams, Jr.

…just to name a few.

I don’t mean to simply recreate the sketch; you should watch it on nbc.com for the full effect.  And hopefully, like me, you’ll find more than the goose funny.

You’ll laugh at all of us.