A bald eagle flew right over my car the other day while I was waiting at the light by my house. Chased by a crow. At least it appeared to be chased.
The eagle was flying at a pretty good clip, but at the same time, it didn't appear distressed at all. Could it simply have been going from A to B, and some over-amped crow had to throw in its final "and stay out" after the larger raptor's retreat? Exerting some birdie-machismo? Or perhaps pushed to go above and beyond to protect a nest, a territory, a mate?
The eagle could have definitely kicked some crow tail-feathers - it looked to be about three times the size of the smaller bird, equipped with talons and that great, hooked beak. The crow did not leave off its raucous pursuit even as far as I could see, and the car behind me honked, light turned green with me still sitting motionless in the lane.
I've been toe-to-toe with the bigger-badder before, scared spitless, knowing I was going to take an ass whupping. The adrenaline burst that kicks you in the stomach activates all kinds of reckless responses. It has to go somewhere, no matter how bad the odds.
But that's when it gets interesting - in that moment of unbalance.
It's Hannibal defeating the Romans. The Scottish rebels winning the Battle of Bannockburn. Joe Namath beating the 1969 Baltimore Colts in Superbowl III. Every Rocky movie. Han Solo and Chewbacca rushing the Imperial soldiers on the Death Star. We make our underdogs heroes and mythical legends. Chasing the eagle.
Not that it doesn't sometimes end badly. For every victory story, there's a defeat on the other side. But for today, I wonder how it worked out for that brave and/or reckless crow.