I just wanted to take a moment to express my sincere appreciation for publishing my photograph recently. Yes, I am indeed the Snowy Owl caught on the Transport Quebec traffic camera this week. Such a palaver ensued, but let me explain. I have an uncle in Texas, a very wise professor owl, he teaches English (in fact he is one of the few owls who still, on occasion, say Whom instead of Who – but only when grammatically correct). I wanted to send him a selfie, but ran into the usual problem.
While the geniuses in Silicon Valley focus attention on driverless cars and other gadgets, it might be a thought to design a mobile phone with a keypad suitable for use with wing tips. No, not the shoes, but actual tips of wings. My only recourse when it comes to email and Internet surfing is to use my beak; the proverbial hunt and peck.
As you can no doubt imagine using the camera app is essentially impossible. Attempts to ‘beak’ the shutter button result in selfies of the upper part of my eyes and the top of my head. This would be fine were I a proud Bald Eagle, but as a Snowy Owl it just doesn’t cut it.
Undaunted I resorted to my owlish intelligence and devised a solution. One morning last week I did the unthinkable. I swooped toward the above mentioned traffic camera, spreading my wings in greeting. I say unthinkable because for generations we Snowy Owls have been loath to allow our photographs to be taken lest they end up on wine bottles (Harfang des Neiges) or cigar packages with not a penny in royalties ever paid. Throwing caution to the wind I decided I didn’t give a damn (c’mon, you didn’t think I was going to say ‘hoot’ did you … really?…) and flew right at the camera.
As I had hoped I was soon able to select from a plethora of my selfies published online, in newspapers and magazines. Selecting one that showed my best side, I beaked an email, including a link to the image and sent it off to my uncle.
So let me once again thank you for helping me.
The Highway-40 Snowy Owl