George the Bird Jerk

The weather was a perfect 81 degrees in Monterey today [Sunday]. We started our day at the coast on the Fisherman's Wharf.

The smell of salt-water taffy was intoxicating. Chocolate-covered bananas only $2.99! We strolled down the wharf taking in all the gift shops, chowder samplings, and the mid-November crowd.

Could the day get any better?

Aparently not.

We reached George the Bird Guy's little cart. It was comprised of a perch with 8 or so different parrots, baking in the mid-day sun. One freakish bird donned a beak-overbite and a make-shift neck brace. He looked like he hated his life.

That should have been my first clue to run. Run like the wind from this freakshow.

I saw that the man was offering pictures of children with the birds, so we hung around acting interested.

George: [to me] Do you have a camera?

He asked this in the most unappealing, oddest, non-friendly way possible. I paused for a moment to find our phone. Once gathered he GRABBED my daughter's friend by the arm and pulled her toward him. He began to place an unhappy parrot on her arm.

George: [yelling at H] HOLD HER LIKE THIS, RAISE YOUR ARM, STAND SIDEWAYS, PET HER LIKE A CAT. SMILE AT THE CAMERA!!!! [then to DQ] GET OUT OF THE WAY SHE'S TAKING A PICTURE!
Me: Take it easy!! Can you relax?!?

At this point I think H is going to cry. I feel like calling the cops on this freakish bird-jerk.

Before I collect the family and head for the hills, he pulls DQ over. He YELLS the same orders to her about holding the bird.

Me: SIR, calm down!

I snap the shot and poor K wants her turn. I can't believe I go through with it, but I allow him to grab the last small bird and place it on my baby's arm. She looks utterly terrified, but excited at the same time.

George again starts his shouting and I step in again,
OKAY, that's it, thank you, LET'S GO!

I steer our group away and feel utterly embarassed, violated, and angry. The older girls are completely grossed out and traumatized.

I'm pissed that what could have been such a neat experience was clouded by the fact that this man should NOT be near children or anyone for that matter.

I'm considering contacting someone at the city of Monterey and filing a complaint. Should I?

34 supporters in group:

  1. ugagirl30 said...

    It serves him right. That's ridiculous!!

  2. Linda S said...

    I'm terrified of birds. That would have been the end of me. He can take his birds and ...you knoq...mean man...

  3. Sass said...

    Honestly, I think you should. But, then again...he's probably fairly well-known.

    Ugh. We had a similar experience with a "balloon man" in New Orleans.

    Yuck, yuck, yuck.

  4. Average Girl In Average World said...

    Oh my....def. file a complaint, just take a day or so to calm down before you do. The nerve. If you don't like kids, don't take a job revolving around them. Some people.

    Sorry what your kids experienced.

  5. April said...

    Scary!...I would definately report your experience to the city.

  6. Shorty said...

    Heck yes!!! Definitely contact someone. There is no sense in a man behaving that way in public, especially if his job (that he apparently chose to do) is being a public servant. Sounds like he needs some customer service training and psychotherapy.

    Even if nothing comes of the complaint I'm sure it would make you and your family feel better.

  7. Brooks said...

    I would def complain! what a jerk!

  8. April said...

    yes.

  9. Jamey said...

    wow I haven't been there in years, thanks for the warning about the bird man. yes I would complain!

  10. Such The Spot said...

    Totally. Call the city. It's ridiculous that he would treat children that way. Maybe the city can give him the swift kick in the behind that he deserves!

  11. kel said...

    I would so complain about that.. either that or punch him. What an ass.

  12. Jo-Jo said...

    Oh yes! I don't get his rudeness? What is it to him how your kids do when they take the picture? Its your picture! If you have a bad feeling about him than there is a reason for it...call.

  13. Amy@Bitchin'WivesClub said...

    I'm not sure complaining would do anything... those kinds of "tourist attractions" are like going to the carnival... your kids will probably have fun, but the carnies are totally creepy and sometimes scary. You take the good with the bad.

    I'm sorry you had that happen, though! It stinks when a creepy, terrible person makes even usually-oblivious kids notice them.

  14. Rachel said...

    I love how both of our bird days start out so nicely perfect. . . .

    Yes, complain!

    Following In My Shoes

  15. Amy Amy Bo Bamey said...

    I would complain to someone, not sure who though. Poor Birds, they probably secretly want to peck him to death!

    That bites!

  16. Tara R. said...

    Yeah, I would complain too. That was seriously creepy.

  17. derfina said...

    As an owner of three parrots, I am appalled at how this must be traumatizing to the poor birds, much less the children. Parrots are very intelligent animals with very distinct personalities and it sounds like this borders on abusive behavior. Even just having them outdoors loose is risky for them.

  18. The White Family said...

    OH YES INDEED!! YOU should do something! He should NOT be around children with that type of attitude! You did so much better than what I would have done. You go girl.

  19. Jenni Jiggety said...

    I think I would call the city and let them know he is a creep. Maybe they can yank his permit or something? Sorry he ruined your day!

  20. Andrea said...

    I found you through MBC. Birds are creepy. Men with birds = creppy men.

    I'd complain. :D

  21. Molly said...

    I have an award for you over at my blog. Come see!

    (http://www.thegirlinthemiddle.com/blog)

    not my blogger account ;)

  22. Tony said...

    I would absolutely do something. The guy needs to check himself.

  23. Kelly Drill said...

    Yes yes ohmigosh yes. Ew!

  24. Rebecca a.k.a. Mum said...

    OMG he sounds like a nut case, I am sorry he freaked out the girls so much (and you).

    I feel bad for the poor birdies too, I bet he treats them like shit. :(

  25. Braja said...

    Hell I got angry just reading that. I don't know how you just walked away from that. Yeah, report that @$$*&^%. God.

  26. Wendi said...

    Jerk is right!
    He should not be around kids.
    Or people of any age for that matter.
    Ugh!

  27. Elaine said...

    Scary, I say, turn him in.

  28. Merrie said...

    As a mom who loves Monterey, I say yes. They probably know about him, but a complaint couldn't hurt. Why do people who clearly hate people do a job that requires them to talk to people? And I'm just feeling sorry for the birds. Thanks for the tip!

  29. Eryn at HomeSchooledYear.com said...

    OMG PLEASE make the call. I know EXACTLY who you are talking about, and one of his birds BIT my daughter's finger when we were basically rail-roaded by this guy!

    I have been stopping by through entrecard, and was reading this post and thought "oh, the wharf...oh....BIRD GUY....with a cart...OMG!" lol

    I know just what you're talking about, it still really creeps me out, and makes me feel awful, because i HATE being out of control and that's exactly what happened...we walked up, just to look, and he put the parrot on my shoulder, but I was holding my daughter, and the bird just reached out and bit her, HARD. Then he yelled at us! We weren't even doing anything, other than cringing!

    I can't even stand to look at the photos on my camera. Did he try to demand money out of you after that, too? We were on the last afternoon of our vacation visiting my brother, so I didn't report him. If you get me a number, I'll report him too. My email address is in my profile, if you want to get in touch.

  30. Kelly said...

    i would definately call someone about him. it's not right that he treats people that way, especially children!

  31. Tena said...

    ewww he sounds like a creep! I would complain!

  32. Debbie said...

    I read your story and think you should file a complaint. He could have just missed his Prozac for the day, whatever the reason the guy is unstable and should not be working the public like that. Get him off the street!!! Creepy stuff like that happens all the time, and it will send a message to your children that it was unaceptable behavior.

  33. flickrlovr said...

    As a resident of Monterey, I say yes, totally report him. I know the guy you're talking about, and this isn't the first time he's been a jerk. He isn't respectful of boundaries, and isn't a nice guy to most people...so I would go for it. If you need any help on knowing who to contact, let me know, and I'll hook you up ;)

    So sorry the kids (and you) had to deal with him! How scary for all of you. I don't think you're overreacting either, not like anyone would think you were...but I've seen this guy many times before and he's exactly like this to everyone!

  34. Wildbird said...

    Saw a pair of WESTERN KINGBIRDS chasing a REDTAIL HAWK right over the down town area here in ETNA,CA it was breath taking to see and realize how absolutly fearless they are

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