Did you know that half this song is birds? HALF. That’s kind of a messed up deal present-wise if you ask me. Anyway, footless doves.
Don’t worry, I’m not talking about real [read: fancy] doves, I’m talkin’ ’bout Rock Doves and not the fancy versions of those either. Fancy birds don’t lose their feet, everyone knows this.
Anyway, take a second and wonder What is it with all those toeless, nubby street pigeon feet? For the longest time, this was barely worth a wonder to me. I just assumed that city people were constantly stepping on or running over the pigeons’ feet and they just broke off. Then, some time later, I realized that that doesn’t make any sense.
Pigeons are slow, goofy-lookin’ walkers to be sure but they can fly and are excellent flyers.
After some minimal detective work and a short study montage, I now know that the foot issues are due to an adorably named affliction, Bumblefoot, or some wayward string or hair that wraps around the area and cuts off circulation until something falls off. Both of these are really terribly painful ways to lose your feet.
Bumblefoot refers to the staph infection that sets in after the bird gets a cut or scrape from a rough surface. Pigeons tend to perch almost exclusively on pointy, abrasive things without wearing socks or shoes. One time, I swear I even saw one standing on the pointed end of a statue’s spear: they really just don’t care. And we all get cuts n’ scrapes but what makes the city pigeon even that much more careless is that he’ll expose himself to bacteria with the staph. And by “expose himself to bacteria ” I mean “stand in his own shit.”
The feet don’t grow back, and usually it’s the nub that’s now exposed to the rough, Staphylococcus-y environments so that the whole cycle might start again and again until the pigeon is completely legless (otherwise known in the wild as “dead”)