Wednesday, November 27, 2013


The first time I recall mention of whangdoodles was when I read about them in William Least Heat Moon's first book, Blue Highways.  He took off in a van for a year, following the roads on atlas maps marked in blue - secondary highways - then wrote about his experiences.  He was somewhere down south when the locals warned a particular reservoir was haunted by whangdoodles.  I think he was a hopeful skeptic and decided to camp at that reservoir.  All through the night strange banging and noises surrounded his van.  Just because a world renown author writes about his experiences with whangdoodles is not scientific proof that they exist.

Every night when the sun goes down, I have to go into the chicken pen, find the three new hens and physically stuff them into the coop.  They are afraid of Big Hen, I suppose, since she bullies them every day.  I do not know what I am going to do to convince them they need to roost in the safety of the coop.  For now, I have to put those little chickens to bed in the dark. 

Last night was a starry night.  It was the kind of night I love the most: cold, calm, and beautiful.  After "tucking the chickens in", I was thinking of going to visit the horse persons when a loud, organic sound came from the general direction of the barn.  I cannot describe the noise.  It was surely made by a large animal, maybe a cow or even a horse, except I have never heard either animal make that particular noise.  It could have been the noise a cougar makes when it yawns.  You know, like right before it decides to attack a human being?  Except the dogs would have been going crazy barking at a cougar.  The dogs did not even appear to acknowledge the sound, as if they had not heard it at all. 

I stood in the dark a long time watching the dark outline of the barn, hoping to see if the horses were up there.  I never saw anything move but I gradually got the feeling that the noise I heard was probably a whangdoodle, so I came back to the house and locked the doors.

1 comment:

Don said...

In my pursuit of more knowledge of "whangdoodles", I found "an imaginary creature of undefined character". That settles that, but then I see - "What made you want to look up whangdoodle? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible)."

Nah, I am not going to get sucked into this and tell "them" why I was looking it up.

But here's one that did;

"Lynn Turner · North Georgia College & State University
For quite some time, I have used the word whangdoodle to describe someone who is looney. I know that is a stretch for the meaning, but it just SOUNDS fitting :) I am an avidreader and write sometimes and I love words."

Yes, that is a stretch, but how about that "yawning" SOUND being Big Foot taking a hike up the creek out of breath, after all that would fit very nicely with "whangdoodleland".