When I was a mid-90s hipster I decried America’s Funniest Home Videos as crap. Fat people breaking diving boards, falling off bikes and getting hit in the nuts by baseball bat wielding toddlers. Har Har. What sent me over the edge was the stupid cartoon “sproinging” sounds that got added to each video. It’s like we weren’t smart enough to know when to laugh without the force-fed sound effects. Now, that I’m the parent of a seven year old, I see the error of my ways. AFV is brilliant, especially when you’re watching with a 7 year old. Sorry America, I was wrong. From the vantage point of my middle age, fat people breaking diving boards, falling off bikes and getting hit in the nuts by baseball bat wielding toddlers are actually really frakking funny. Cats and dogs juggling beach balls, hurling themselves into pools and stealing the wigs off the heads of old ladies. Funny. I can’t deny it.
As a filmmaker with a kid who’s a bit of a ham, I’ve always wondered if we could manufacture a video to crash the AFV party. Ultimately I’ve never bothered, because there is something about the spontaneity of the good ones that can’t be beat. Well, we blew our chance for a spot on the show and the $10,000 prize money the other day. While visiting the San Diego Zoo, we ventured into one of the zoo’s many awesome aviaries. Upon entry we stumbled upon a Madagascar Crested Ibis, one of those low-to-the-ground, waddling birds. Kind of like a flightless, undersized turkey. He quickly started stalking my child and then in a burst of avian bravado whacked my son upside the head with his massive wing. A quick shot to my son’s chest followed and bam bam, the bird had landed two quick blows. The family was in retreat and the bird kept coming. We scurried off humbled…and without a video. Damn.
There are more imposing pictures of an ibis to be found, but the one pictured above comes from the San Diego Zoo. So this could be the culprit.