For pheasant’s sake…

Driving to work yesterday morning, I was unfortunate enough to witness a fellow driver deliberately mow down a pheasant in his haste to get to work on time.

Now I appreciate that the pheasant is a stupid bird. With no discernible road sense whatsoever. I also appreciate that when one runs out blindly across a main road, there’s not much one can do to avoid it. The risk of roadkill is incalculably high. But this was different. This was premeditation murder. ‘Murder most fowl’, if I was feeling humorous. But I’m not. I’m a little bit angry. Because the truth is that this pheasant was in the road ten seconds or more before it was killed.

It was stationary and easily visible. Clueless, but eminently avoidable. A touch on the brakes and no one needs to get hurt. But no. This driver was just too selfish to wait. After all, he had to get to work six seconds quicker. He had to make that little bit of extra ground just to queue pointlessly behind the car in front.

I realise it’s stressful driving on our rush hour roads. I realise that a punishment of living on an island as ludicrously overcrowded and rat-race-minded as this is to endure these thoughtless clowns hammering their hatchbacks every morning. But dear God, do they really need to plough through innocent birds while doing it?

I felt a tinge of disappointment as I watched the pheasant spin lifelessly across the tarmac before the cloud of strewn feathers came back down to rest. We should be better than this.

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