A collegue who would probably be ignored by Metro's Consumer Representative because of his love for anonymity left this message in my computer directory:

"Bill: A couple of months ago, the proprietor (who shall be nameless) of Whimsy on the Middle Patuxent, a goat farm, thoughtlessly put a paper bag of fencing staples on the seat of his tractor.

"When he next went to use the tractor, he discovered that a wren had built a nest in the bag.

"He told his wife, Ruth, about this. She decreed that the tractor could not be used until the babies had hatched, fledged and flown. So now the grass in the orchard is two feet high, the garden is unplowed an unplanted, the corn unsown and the first hay overripe. It is one thing to be ruthless, but another to be too Ruthful."

We have both learned something, dear collegue. You have learned not to leave paper bags on the seat of your tractor. I have learned that fledge as an intransitive verb means "to grow the feathers necessary for flying," and as a transitive verb means "to rear a young bird until it is able to fly." In addition, I have learned why the noun fledgling is a natural derivative that refers to a "a young bird just fledged" or to "a young, inexperienced person." Thank you.