I’m being followed every evening, stared at with dead black eyes, matched stride for stride while my would-be assailants offer occasional rude-sounding comments.

This is actually happening right here in El Campo.

I’d like to know why.

It’s creepy.

I’m not kidding.

Unfortunately, I don’t think the police are interested in handling this case.

You see, my stalkers aren’t human.

Does anybody out there talk turkey?

That’s right, turkey. Although there is an assortment of chickens and a few ducks in the mix, all seeming to have a rather intense interest in my evening habit of moseying down the street.

Apparently I’m a whole lot more interesting of a person than I think I am, a field of domesticated birds can’t be wrong I suppose.

It is a bit uncomfortable, however, to have this flock, gaggle or whatever the proper term may be, turn from whatever they’re doing at the time to race to the fence line and then keep perfect time with my steps for about an acre’s walk.

Welcome to the movie scene of a woman being followed El Campo style. I take a step, they take however many needed to keep pace. I stop. They stop. I turn around and walk the other way, yep, so do my fowl friends (or at least I hope they’re friendly).

The level of apparent interest is downright intense, at times trumping the owner’s effort to return them to roost at night.

I’ve taken to offering a friendly “Hi, guys” each evening because I am old enough to have watched Alfred Hitchcock’s “The Birds.” Thanks to a classic movie theatre, I’ve even had the privilege of seeing it on the big screen – gives you a healthy respect for avians.

So, is this a job for law enforcement?

“Hey, officer. There’s this gang who’s been stalking me. A description? Well, they’re about foot and half, some almost two foot tall. Skinny legged, brown, flashing red around their faces and ...

“No, not gang colors. These funny growth things seem to be a part of their face. Beady eyes. Literally sharp mouths. Not sure if they can be handcuffed ....”

Adding to the concern, the grackles are starting to gather on the power lines around town and the turkeys are bobbing their heads in an apparent greeting each evening before the stalking begins.

Is this one of those weird country things like possums walking into your living room on a nice spring day?

Being an Army brat, I still get befuzzled by the ways and whims of farm animals. Ever read Animal Farm, aka the horror version of Charlotte’s Web?

No, I’m not expecting a fowl uprising in El Campo, although it is 2020.

Anything is possible.




– Shannon Crabtree is editor & publisher of the El Campo Leader-News.

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