Wing, No Prayer

Whoever decided to release a flock of caged white doves at the end of the Cowboys halftime show Thanksgiving Day no doubt intended them as symbols of peace during these unsettled times. Except they weren't doves. At least one was a pigeon.

How does Buzz know that? Because we located one of the "doves" at Rogers Wildlife Rehabilitation Center in Hutchins, where it was taking a bath in a nice bowl of water, mending an injured wing and no doubt still trying to settle its nerves after being subjected to a second half of watching the Cowboys' offense. A woman attending the game chased the hurt bird from under Texas Stadium seats and brought it to the center for care.

See, here's the thing about releasing white doves and/or pigeons in packed, noisy stadiums where the only birdie exit is a hole in the roof: It's a nice thought, but a dumb idea.

"Texas Stadium, that's a whole different environment...I'd venture to say 90 percent of them never made it out," says the center's Kathy Rogers.

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Maybe. A co-worker of Buzz's attended the game and says he and other fans spent most of the second half watching white whatevers flutter about the stadium. They zipped into suites and were shooed out. They smacked into the nets at the end zone during point-after attempts.

Even those who made a break for it likely didn't fare well, Rogers says. Snow-white plumage on a small bird is nature's way of saying "eat me" to predators.

A Cowboy's spokeman says he knows of no injured birds and that some returned to their owner. We have a hint for the team, though, in case any bird-related extravaganzas are planned for next Thanksgiving: Domesticated turkeys can't fly. We know. We watched WKRP in Cincinnati.

Apparently, pigeons aren't the only injured birds winging about Texas Stadium these days. There are some wounded ducks, too. Check out this account from a story in The Dallas Morning News:

Rookie quarterback Quincy Carter has changed the way he grips the ball in hopes it will help him throw spirals more consistently...

"The ball is much bigger here in the NFL than it was in college," Carter said.

In related news, many new Cowboys players report that their NFL opponents are "much bigger and faster" than anticipated. Also, opposing coaches are "smarter than you'd think." To counteract this, coaches are encouraging players to run very fast.

And watch out for pigeon poop.

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