Olympic Food Flinging - - - by Liz and Stephen Davies (aka "Mom" and "Dad")


Scene: The 2008 Summer Olympics in Bejing.  The following
is a transcript of Howard and Red (two internationally famous radio sportscasters) describing the action
as the Macaw team steps up for the final Food Flinging event: The Apple Toss


(sound of a large crowd in the Olympic stadium.  Along with the distant voices of the crowd, there is the occasional screech of a parrot.)

Red: Well, the Pionus team was certainly disappointed in those final scores, Howard.  I've rarely seen flock of birds so down-in-the beak.  But they certainly carried themselves well, don't you think?

Howard: Yes, Red I do.  But Pionus are truly dignified birds and they always display superb sportsbirdship.  And up next we have the Macaw team coming for this final Food Flinging event.  The Macaws have traditionally given a good showing in these competitions but the Apple Toss is not their strongest event.  Do you think there's any hope for a medal today?

Red: Yes, I do.  Both Jesse and Pakshi Davies were strong in the preliminaries, so strong that even the Toos know these are the birds to beat in this one.

Howard: Here they come now!

(The crowd noise grows and applause sounds.  There are several screeches of "good bird!" from the avian spectators)

Howard: Yes!  Here's Pakshi Davies hopping out of the entry tunnel, and right behind him is..

(The crowd roars and applause is wild.  A chant begins of "Jessseeee, Jessseeee, Jessseeee")

Howard: Jesse Davies!  Just listen to that crowd, Red!

Red: Yes, Jesse has always been a crowd favorite.  She really knows how to please an audience.

(The crowd becomes quieter)

Howard: Pakshi steps up to the line now, picks up the slice of apple with his beak and climbs the ladder to the competition perch.  Oh!  (sound of the crowd crying out in empathy) Almost lost it!  Those apple slices are slippery, Red and if he drops it now, there's no chance for a medal.  No - he's fine.  He's transferred the slice to his claw to get a better grip.


Red: Smart bird, that Pakshi.  That claw clasp maneuver isn't new, though.


(the crowd is quiet now, feeling the tension of the moment)


Howard:  That's right, Red.  I believe the credit for it goes to Paulie Conure.  Pakshi lifts his left claw and carefully takes the apple slice into his beak.  He  flaps his wings and stands still, looking intently into the distance. Now he's slowly pivoting to the left, then back to the right.  He pivots again and... and... Yes!  (crowd Roars again)  He flings the apple full force, tossing his head high as he goes.


Red:  ...and it lands! (roar of approval from the crowd and "Good Bird Good Bird" squaks are heard over that sound).  The marshals are running across the field and they place a small flag just where the apple landed.  The measuring tape is out and...  It looks good!, it's over six feet! It's very good, almost Pakshi's record!


Howard: The second marshal is out with his tape measure and now he says something into his cellphone.  We'll wait on the scoreboard (the crowd roars again) six feet, 2.75 inches! A very good fling from Pakshi Davies.


Red: Now it's Jesse's turn. She walks quickly to the line, bends down and picks up her slice of apple with her beak. She lifts her head and shakes the apple...adjusts it with her claw. She looks around, at the crowd, at the line and then in the direction in which she must throw the apple. She checks the wind, noting that it is wafting slightly from right to left as she stands. Jesse jogs up and down on the spot, then shakes her wings. She takes a few deep breaths, then mounts the competition perch. One more deep breath ( the crowd is now totally silent), and... she lunges (the crowd roars to life again) hurling the apple slice high!  Its a great  throw,


Howard: No! (the crowd can be heard yelling "NO"!)  it's going out of bounds and it....  OH!  It hit the marshal on the head!  (the crowd gasps and grows quiet again) The marshal must have lost sight of the apple in the sun! He's lying on his back now but he's just moved his arms so I think he's going to be OK.  Yes, the medics are signaling that he's fine.  (polite applause from the crowd)


Red: What happens now, Howard? 


Howard: Well, in the ancient days of Olympic sports, of course, a mistake like that would lead to only one thing...


Red: the cat?


Howard: Exactly, Red.  But these days, according to international competition rules, one out-of-bounds throw (for each competitor) could be declared a "no throw" and she could be up again.  But we'll have to wait until the official gains consciousness to learn his decision.


Red: We'll take a short commercial break and be right back.  Still ahead: the Antique-Chair Chewing event.  Stay tuned!