Dear 43 Things Users,

10 years after introducing 43 Things to the world, we have decided we have met our last goal: completing the incredible experience that has been 43 Things. Please join us in giving one last cheer to all the folks who have shared their goals with the world, as well as all the people who have worked at The Robot Co-op to build this incredible website. We won a Webby Award, published a book, and brought happiness to a lot of people.

Starting today, 43 Things users can export their goals and entries from the site. Starting August 15, we will make the site “read only”. 43 Things users will still be able to view the site and export their content, but we won’t be taking any new content from users. We hope to leave the site up for folks to see and download their content until the end of the year. Ending on New Year’s Eve takes us full circle.

It has been a long ride (one of our original goals was to "build a company that lasts at least 2 years” - we beat that one!) While we wish the site could live on, it has suffered from a number of challenges - changes in how people use the site, the advertising industry, and how search engines view the site. We wish the outcome was different – but we’ve always been realistic about when our goals are met and when they aren't.

As of today, you will be able to download your goals and entries. See more about that on the FAQ page. Thanks for 10 great years of goal-setting and achieving.

- The Robots.

Export My Content

shapeshifter_v in Greece is doing 11 things including…

reclaim my balcony from the darn pigeons

4 cheers


shapeshifter_v has written 2 entries about this goal

I don't think ...

...I’ll ever make the balcony a pigeon-free or droppings-free zone. But I have made progress.

One trick is to not let them lay their eggs in the flower pots and the flower bed.
By observing them I have seen that they make a nest by collecting twigs and leaves. They can collect a significant quantity in just a day, so I need to be vigilant and whenever I see them flying to and from the balcony I start looking: chances are there’ll be the beginnings of a nest somewhere. So I put on my disposable latex gloves and throw away the twigs. Then I rearrange the flower pots to make the spot inaccessible for a day or so. They forget all about the old nest, and take their business elsewhere.

It was by spritzing them with the water hose for a couple of days that I re-instated their natural fear in people. I felt like such a bitch to do this, but they got the message and now when they see me outside they fly away by themselves, and this is a relief! They were getting so cheeky, you could almost touch them and they wouldn’t fly away!

By watering the flowers in the evening, I have made the balcony less appealing to them. When they get splashed they fly away, and they’re so sleepy they’ll fall asleep somewhere else.

Pigeons can be very persistent when they operate on autopilot, but also have a short attention span. If you can somehow distract them and make them change their patterns of behavior, they adhere quite well to the new situation.

Our balcony is still a place where they can rest a bit and drink some water. I try to be discrete when they’re thirsty and I have the droppings to prove it, but other than that, I’m sending out the message that they need to move on.

If you think...

that this goal is somehow inhumane, you are not alone. So do I.

In fact, for the past 5 years I’ve been idle, allowing pigeons get more and more intrusive, have lost countless hours of sleep because of their cooing sounds, have cleaned countless pieces of droppings from balconies and window sills. I even had to dispose of 2 dead fledgelings left behind after their parents flew away from the flower bed where they had nested.

The entire neighborhood has seen a huge explosion in pigeon population, and last spring some people 2 blocks from here decided to become ruthlessly efficient by using poison.
Bird netting and bird strips have often been employed. I even have a neighbor who half-joked about shooting the bastards.

This not merely an obsession on my part, but a big urban problem. Pigeons don’t go away by themselves, as you can see here
Now, I’m not the kind of person who would shoot, poison, or trap a creature and then “relocate” it. But I won’t take it anymore, either.

shapeshifter_v has gotten 4 cheers on this goal.


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