F 1 D 0 - 2002 11 30 at 0945 Crows that sound funny. It isn't your imagination. I got up on a weekend before noon. And it isn't because I have any appointments. It was the sunshine. It is lovely out here. In fact, it was my intention to show you exactly how bright it is now. But I've spent the last fifteen minutes learning the HP 315 camera we have no longer wants to snap pictures. It has had this symptom at night time. And when we are in motion. You press the blue shutter button about halfway, and it provides a light. Steady green for distance and light OK. Blinking green for Not OK. And occasionally (like at night, or moving) just nothing for Total Confusion. Press the rest of the way to request a picture. But the conditions are perfect for the camera right now, and it is just refusing to do anything at all for me. Press halfshutter, green light comes solid. Continue press, small buzzclick, nothing. Repeat ad nauseum, still nothing. I've just called HP's support number, at 1-800-387-3867. Like all support numbers, you have to listen carefully, and direct your call. Choose 1 for Pavilion Products, Choose 2 for Unix products, Choose 3 for PCs, Home-office products, Scanners and (beep!3). Anyway, my rant is after going in four levels deep, it told me their offices are closed. Please call back between 800am and 800pm Eastern Time. That's nice. Those are reasonable hours. But I am thinking it could have told me much earlier. The landscape is changing even as I sit here writing to you. For some reason, the sun was striking the buildings across my street with complete intensity, making them look like they were in the desert. And the sky is without cloud, even now. I wanted to show you. I'm thinking by 1030am, this won't be so special any longer. But it was the Bright Sunshine which got me out of bed typing. For the last few days I've been aware of the ravens we have here. They look just like crows to me. They're black. They're smart. They don't huddle together, but manage to communicate to each other anyway. When they talk, you realize that it isn't a crow. Crows make this "caw", and while there are regional variations, it is still "caw". My dad used to make fun of the crow call, "(yitz) hHaak! (yitz) hHaak!". Yes, it sound like the Yitzhak to me as a kid too. Now, imagine a raven. It makes this call which is so low, so many octaves lower than a caw, it is a rattle. The one I heard yesterday came out as four clicks. A crow with a bass voice. Maybe I'd never really looked at them until recently, but they have a lot of beak. It surprises me how much beak and from where on their face it connects. At some point, I'm thinking I'll grow a baby crow (or raven) as a tame bird. It cannot be too much different from raising a pet squirrel, can it? They're smart, I know that. They can talk well, I know that too. In North America, there seems to be laws about what kind of animals you can make for pets. You are welcome to Shoot these birds with guns, without a licence, but you are breaking the law by domesticating them as pets. That laws get stranger still. We can make pets of Starlings, the black birds with very small light markings over them. That is because they are not naturally from here, but were imported from the United Kingdom. I don't want any of you thinking I'm going to locate a pet. Inasmuch as I'm very much an animal person (and the animals know that), I'm not ready to commit to taking such care of them. When opportunities for travel come around, having a pet is a responsibility, even though I think about them a lot. That's all I know.