Five reasons why Denver's "GoosInator" goose-scaring machines for parks are stupid
So normally when my roomie yells "Check this sh*t out on YouTube!!!" I ignore him, but when he told me Denver had a goose-scaring robot to rid its parks of geese, I had to watch. And I saw the "GoosInator," a highway cone-orange creation that looks like something sewn on to an Ed Hardy shirt, making a scary lawn-mower noise and being operated via remote control by a Parks and Rec intern.
The GoosInator: Yes, it's a real thing.
"Wow," I remarked. If there was a way that Denver Parks and Recreation could waste *more* money, I don't know what it is (and please, DP&R, don't take this as a challenge or a dare, I beg you).
Here are five reasons why Denver's "GoosInator" goose-scaring machine for parks is super-stupid. I sincerely hope that whoever bought these kept the receipts, or at least got the extended warranty plan.
- Occupy Denver: Parks and Rec launches expensive park clean-up, protesters help
- Beware the golden egg of Denver's goose harrassers
- What's good for the (Canada) goose isn't really good for Denver
I'm ancient enough to recall the days when college students doing internships were abused in non-creative ways, like being used as donut- and dry-cleaning fetchers. These tasks weren't at all glamorous, but they were character-building exercises specifically designed to prepare these noobs for their grown-up jobs later on -- or at least make them mad enough to succeed, and then hold long enough grudges to abuse their own unpaid interns someday.
It's the circle of life, and having interns do fun things like chase around birds with remote-control roboets is upsetting the symbiotic balance.
4. They cost $2,997 each, plus shipping and handling.
Three THOUSAND dollars. Each.
I checked out the GoosInator on its creator's company website. It's made by a local, family-owned company, which is a plus, out of "a durable foam with special additives and injected into a molded product." It runs on a lithium polymer battery, and can go across grass, water, ice or snow. It's also seventeen inches tall, twenty-four inches wide, and forty inches long "with colors and predator-like features that are guaranteed to make geese very nervous."
I dunno about the geese, but paying just-shy of $3,000 a piece for these things makes me nervous.
Why can't the city find a less-costly way to get the damn birds off the damn lawns -- like buying a few vintage Teddy Ruxpin bears at yard sales, putting almost-dead batteries in them, and setting them up in the parks? Those little f*ckers will scare off the geese, the people in the parks, and every living thing within a mile radius.
Apparently a single Canada goose plops down a pound of poo a day -- a big "thank you" to the Denver Post for doing the research on that -- and the city gets up to fifty complaints a week about the goose poop in City Park. Cleaning up after those geese costs Denver $500 to $1,000 a week.
Okay....so the city wants homeless folks to get jobs and stop hanging out in the parks. They are gonna hang out in the parks, anyway, so why not pay them to clean up the goose pies, and give them gloves, scoopers and perhaps bag lunches -- with granola and boxes of low-fat milk -- for extra incentive?
And as for the fifty-odd goose-doober complaints a week, instead of buying expensive goose-chasing machines, why not pay a few extra humans to man the city phone lines and tell callers who bitch about goose-dumplings to watch where they are walking, and quit whining?