Friday, 20 March 2015

How to twitch a stick

Last Sunday I received a hot tip-off from a notorious Dave about a stick that was worth travelling for. Having seen most of the sticks on the Irish list, and having a substantial west pal sticklist I was desperate to jump in the car straight away. Disaster struck when the wife and kids came back and I had to spend some 'quality family time'. By the time I had a chance to make a dash for the ligneous lovely it was too dark - my stick twitch would have to wait until the next day.
Thus was spent one of the worst nights of my life - sweats, nightmares, palpitations, diarrhea: what if the stick had flown next day, was it a resident or was it on migration, what if somebody moved it? All of these things went through my head as I sat on the toilet.
The next day I got up two hours before light, prepared myself a microwave burger soaked in advocaat and wasp-eze, went back to sleep and once I could see enough to drive I went on the biggest stick twitch of my life. This was a biggie - this one would changes things forever, completelys. I'm serious.




When I arrived at the undisclosed location I followed Dave's detailed directions 'It's behind the sign'. Surely, it couldn't be so easy, I asked myself? But no, sure enough - there she was in all her glory close by to a smoky bacon crisp packet and a flock of nine toilet brushes. What a moment! In my mind I couldn't help but think of how Livingstone must have felt when he found that tin of soggy Victoria biscuits in Zanzibar. I was lost for words - had there ever been such a stick known to man?



.....unbelievably, as I was watching, another stick flew in! I couldn't believe my eyes - one stick is big enough news but two together!? it was almost unheard of (until now!). Deftly, I waved my arms to command my man-servant to rattle off a few lithographs tout de suite (he's french). In the olden days it was quite common for people to try and secure sticks with a quick blast from an ak-47. As strange as it sounds now it was once quite a popular pastime for people to kill sticks and (I know this will sound ludicrous to some people)....make sticks out of them. Barbarous, that's what I think of it all. Having drunk my full of their sticky goodness, lovingly dolloped with oodles of barky frippery, I decided to leave the sticks in peace. Ordinarily, I would have put the news out last sunday shortly after it was found but sticks are so rare nowadays that I'm just a bastard.



Unfortunately, closer inspection showed that neither stick was in a good way - both had been heavily parasitized by Hypoxylon fuscum, even worse it was hyperbolically-parasitisisitised by an ugly micro moth going by the name of Nemapogon clematella. Dave had suspected this but I confirmed it because I'm much, much more better than him or that pig Derek.

PS This is true - I did twitch a stick. Better than a kumlien's gull