My heart became hot within me. As I mused, the fire burned; then I spoke with my tongue: "O Lord, make me know my end and what is the measure of my days; let me know how fleeting I am!"

16 January 2008

This morning the guard goose was back. As I came to the office for our session meeting, the stray Canadian goose (or does he belong to the house near the building?) was wandering around the parking lot in the dark, honking at me. And then he got in my way and hissed at me. So I kicked him in the head. Hard.

Then, I needed to go back to my truck to retrieve something and there he was again, on the sidewalk, hissing at me. So I kicked him in the head. Harder. He flopped around for a while.

This is how you know it's going to be a great day. When you get to kick a goose in the head. Twice. Goose head first, the gates of hell second. I'm on my way.


Jason said...

You're heartless. lol. Maybe the title of this post should be "Kicking Geese and The Gates of Hell." Bet those key words would generate some intersting traffic.

Micah said...

That's what I'm talkin about. Now for those badger things.

Alicia said...

Haha. That is great. Out here, I don't get why people stop and wait for geese to cross the road. I just honk and drive. Someone will probably sue me for it someday.

Anonymous said...

I didn't find this to be funny at all. I cringed at the thought of one of God's creatures being kicked in the head.

Em said...

Good thing I wasn't there! All that honking would have woken me up!

Elizabeth said...

You know those are federally protected animals and it's illegal to kill one, right?

Jared said...

Last time I checked, I am a federally protected animal, too. Just protecting myself.

And "anonymous", please italicize and bold in your mind the part where the goose was hissing at me. Certainly your love for animals includes me as well. Right? Anyone?

Anonymous said...

Federal Migratory Bird Act of 1918
Canada Geese are protected under the Federal Migratory Bird Act of 1918 . This Act makes it illegal to harm or injure a goose and damage or move its eggs and nest, without a Federal permit. Not complying with the Federal Act can result in fines ranging from $5,000 to $10,000 and this also applies to an untrained dog’s actions..

Although, protection from hunters has proven beneficial in bringing back what was once a dwindling goose population, factors such as climate change and urban sprawl have helped to manifest into a new phenomenon . . . goose residency year round!

Resident Canadian geese are geese which no longer migrate back north. They stay permanently within the same geographical location year round. This growing phenomenon has occurred largely because these geese have found ample food, safety and nesting sites within the nicely manicured lawns and retention ponds that dot our sprawling urban landscape.

Each of these resident Canadian geese will eat 2-3 pounds of grass and deposit approximately 1-2 pounds of (potentially, disease and parasite contaminated) droppings every day. These geese become habituated to people -- live longer, begin reproducing younger and become more aggressive at nesting time than do migratory geese. The resident goose population is nearly doubling in size every five years.

Anonymous said...

"nearly doubling in size every five years"...sounds like it time to start shooting them again. Any good goose recipes out there?

How does "climate change" have anything to do w/ the migratory habits of these birds?

Jared: after letting the groundhog escape a few years back, this "kicking the goose" story gives me some hope.

Jeff Kessler

Anonymous said...

Jared wrote, "This is how you know it's going to be a great day. When you get to kick a goose in the head. Twice."

This is the statement that I have a real problem with. The taking of pleasure in kicking an animal by saying that it's "going to be a great day" is offensive. It's not an attitude that is becoming of a pastor, let alone a father. Children watch and learn from these types of attitudes, and it's certainly not something I want my children learning.

And to try to put words in my mouth by implying that I think you're less important than an animal is absurd. Of course you're more important than any animal, but you stated that the goose did nothing more than honk and hiss at you. You did not say it was attacking you. You did not say that you couldn't avoid being attacked without kicking (hard) the goose. So, if I were to come up to you and "honk" and "hiss" at you, would you kick me in the head?

It doesn't matter who I am, but I am old enough to be your mother or father, and this type of attitude and these actions are bothersome. You represent a church as well as a particular denomination, and your actions affect many people. It's disturbing that others (an elder included!) have piled on in an attempt to make fun of people who are disturbed by this. And then you expect us to follow your leadership?

So, go ahead...any other elders or pastors want to take a shot at me because I happen to care about the fact that a pastor is kicking a Canadian goose in the head "real hard"? This is type of attitude and behavior that you expect people to follow? These are not the attitudes of shepherds. I hope that you delete this entire post, because people are reading, thinking, and developing opinions.

I am equally concerned by the attitudes of young people who have commented here. They think this incident is funny? I'm still shaking my heads over some of these comments here.

I am not an animal lover by any means, but I also do not condone animal abuse simply because an animal "honks and hisses". I'm glad that your children weren't watching this, Pastor Olivetti, because if they were they'd think it was ok to kick an animal in the head if it irritated them by honking, barking, or hissing.

My advice to you would be to delete this entire post.

Concerned said...

Mr. Olivetti,

I am a new "anonymous" poster, but I share the concerns of the other one or more who have cautioned you regarding this post.

Much more importantly, and less likely, however, is the need for you to change your perception of this issue. You've indicated that the goose caused you no harm and apparently, no fear either. You've similarly indicated that the goose may live in a nearby house, thus, is a family pet. Would you kick someone's pet dog in the head "hard" or "harder", such that it "flopped around for a while", solely because it made normal dog sounds when you came into what it viewed as it's territory? Are you truly that kind of animal abuser?

When one must injure or even kill one of His animals (whether two-, four-, more-, or less-legged) to protect his own life or that of his family, the situation is understandable but no less regrettable. To do so and take joy and pleasure in it is reprehensible, not to mention, as the other poster said, criminal.
I'm not a law enforcement officer. I do know several of them. I've told none of them of this post in the hope that you would reconsider your hateful thoughts and actions and possibly even feel truly sorry for them. At this point, however, I would be uncertain if you were truly sorry or simply scared of the penalty you would have brought on yourself.

I began this post addressing you as "Mr. Olivetti". I don't know you and obviously don't attend your church, so I won't call you "Pastor", but the much greater reason for my not doing so is the fact that I don't consider you worthy of the title. A pastor is a person who respects God and all His creations. One definition I read is "a person... in spiritual...charge of a community or congregation" Based on this post (and admittedly, solely on this post) I would not trust you in spiritual charge of anyone or anything, and certainly not a congregation (including children) looking to you for guidance.

I will be praying for you. It sounds like you need all you can get.

Jared said...

Oi vey.

2 quick things. Maybe 3.

First, though this was played for laughs, the goose was approaching me, hissing. I did the same thing I would do if your dog bared his death, growled and came at me. No, I don't think I could have gone around him. And yes, absolutely, I would have done it if my kids were there, because they would have been screaming in fear.

Second, if you are going to question or attack someone's character, put your name with it. In bloggy attacks, "anonymous" is another word for coward. Seriously, if it bothers you that much, email me ( or call me (765-477-7025). Let's talk about it. But if you feel the need to attack, don't be a sniper. Show yourself. Contrary to your statement, it does matter who you are.

Third, there probably are some real disagreements behind this thing in terms of animals and dominion. Yes, we should have regard for the life of our beast (Pro. 12:10) and should never harm one just for kicks (pun only slightly intended). In my eyes, I was faithful to Scripture: I didn't chase him down just to kick him.

But...I do chase down groundhogs with my truck, because they are a real pest and destroy church property.

Amanda said...

Good work on that goose Jared.

Gabe said...

There's no justification for not stopping for geese crossing the street, as one commenter said they did. That is unmitigated animal cruelty, and utterly shameful. But defending one's self against an attack is another story.

Micah said...

Geese and Badgers are doing a fine job of (like Jared said) *destroying* the beauty of creation around the church grounds. So, we teach them to not come near the church building, and we also teach them not to harm fellow creatures, by striking them on the head. Twice.

Anonymous said...

I am not only a child, but also a member af Paster Olivetti's church. I would like to let these so-called "anonymous" posters know that I feel Paster Olivetti is not only free from being labled as criminal for this simple action, but it is totally unfair to compare his actions to those of someone like Michael Vick. I also would like you to know that if I myself were in such a situation, I would have kicked the stupid thing too. Your postings are completeiy out of bounds and might I add that Mr. Olivetti is a WONDERFUL paster,dad,and Leader of our church :)

~Anna Held

Anonymous said...

I humbly disagree about Olivetti being a "wonderful" pastor and leader. He's had an occasional drink of beer, and listens to blues, forgoing the admirable puritanical misery that real RP pastors (and their flocks, if they know what's good for them) normally enjoy. Clearly, if any life enjoyment is detected, he would therefore be unqualified.

Brad Thompson said...

I guess I have to comment on this too. Everyone else is doing it.

What gets me is not the action itself of kicking a bird to get it to move. I would never feel good doing it, but I can see some justification for applying some force if an animal is in the way, and definitely if you're in danger. But what is disturbing is what appears to be a high degree of contempt expressed by many here for any life that is not human as well as the apparent pleasure expressed at the opportunity to inflict injury and pain on such creatures.

Apples of Gold said...

I totally agree with Brad. To say that you know it's going to be a "great day when you get to kick a goose in the head twice" goes over the line as far as I'm concerned. And to see young people follow their pastor's lead is disheartening, to say the least. I'm not an animal fanatic, by any means. In fact, I don't like animals much, but I'd never derive pleasure from inflicting pain on one even if it honked and hissed at me.

marlene said...

Just to clarify some things about this particular goose. It is a nasty and mean animal. It has chased and tried to attack many people in our church parking lot. No, we shouldn't get pleasure from doing it, but we do need to defend ourselves and our family from it. And the only way I know of is to kick the goose because I sure don't want to lose my arm. We have come across the thing at a couple of occasions, and I hope to not have to see it again.

Anonymous said...

can we bring this debate back to life?

you intended harm in your heart, therefore you killed that goose in your heart...

"Goose Killer"!

love, anonymous