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April 15, 2024

Birds of Ripon 04

By Bernie Pilarski

It is perfectly legitimate to ask why I would devote a goodly portion of my life to the study of birds. The answer is simple: I don't like to talk politics. The past thirteen years have disillusioned me. I have to question a system that perks to the top a lecherous adolescent ("What the ...? What's that?" "That's Osama and a goat, Mr. President." "Well golly, I've never seen anything of the kind. Do you think he's gonna smoke that cigar after that?") only to be followed by a boorish cretin ("Not gonna remove the military option from the table. Not gonna do it." "Mr. President, we're talking about Oakland." "One foreign terrorist country's the same as the next." "California, sir. Oakland, California." "The place with the Australian governor?" "Austrian, Mr. President." "Get Rummy in here. We need to come up with a reason to go in there.").

So I've thrown myself into the study of birds in my yard. They make more sense. Besides, I'm better at bird watching than I am at political commentary. Take the Bluebird, for instance ...

The Bluebird

Not to be confused with the Blue Jay, the Blue Bird is common in the area. He is smaller than the Jay but bigger than the Sparrow. You can see by Figure 5 that the Bluebird is exquisitely beautiful.

The Bluebird knows it is beautiful, and as a result, remains a bit aloof, but polite. Whereas a Jay is likely to come screeching down the street, thud to a stop on the fence, and yell, "HEY, WHAT'S THAT BOOGER DOING ON YOUR NOSE?" the Bluebird will flit unnoticed to branch above you, raise one eyebrow in disdain, and leave you a tissue with only the slightest clearing of his throat to attract your attention before flying quietly away. It's a shame there aren't more Bluebirds, but I would guess that they find contact with us a bit painful.

Next Week: The Bird Bush

Article © Bernie Pilarski. All rights reserved.
Published on 2006-10-30
Image(s) © Bernie Pilarski. All rights reserved.
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