Saturday, April 4, 2009

Things Could Never Go Wrong

A Grey-backed Tern, most likely contemplating fish, rather than slaughtering innocent people.

April, for a lot of my colleagues, is a grim, wretched month. It is commonly understood, among certain circles, that anything that can go wrong in April generally will. This has stemmed from year after year of bad luck, break-ups, crippling injuries, house get the point. So while most of us in the northern hemisphere are rejoicing in the warming weather and returning birds, some people are sulking gloomily indoors, afraid of what might happen Out There.

I am not one of those people. My sense of Impending Doom comes and goes at random, and I have no opinion or preference if we have a nuclear holocaust in April, August, or December. I try to take things as they come. April, on the face of it, has been rather good to me for the last few years.....2008 and 2007 was spent in the desert with Burrowing Owls and good friends, in 2006 The Ashtray was rising rapidly to prominence; the year before that my first (and arguably best) band was still playing a few shows, and I was about to graduate college.

Indeed. The first baby steps into the month here on Midway have been marked with nothing unusual. All our projects are going well, and Gary and I have so far averted catastrophe. Back on the mainland though, its a different story. Besides the normal every day floundering economy, class war, environmental abuse and general Panic, there has been a series of bizarre, violent events across the nation, all within the past month. Crazed gunmen seem to be blossoming among the spring blooms, and people in scattered places like Carthage, Santa Clara, Oakland, Pittsburgh, Binghamton are feeling the pain. It seems like it is taking less and less these days for people to want to cash in all their sad.....what's scary is the fact that for every one person who pulls shit like this, there are a hundred other people who seriously have thought of doing the same thing. Jesus. I mean, the worst of them, the Binghamton guy, did this after he lost his job at a vacuum-cleaner factory. Yup, vacuums. I'm not suggesting these are balanced, rational people, but come on? Vacuums? I would be stoked if I got fired from a vacuum-cleaner factory. There is a lot more to the world than that......and from my perch here on Midway, I think I can make that claim with some authority.

A partial albino Black-footed Albatross, which has little interest in assembling vaccuums.
My Midway bird list, conveniently located to your right, has not grown at all in several weeks. The birding situation here is truly Quality over Quantity in terms of species richness. But spring migration is in effect.....the huge population of migratory waterfowl that overwinter here (about ten birds, heh) has now shrunk to one or two birds. It is debatable what continent they have left for. Huge numbers of shorebirds are moving through....I saw over 5,000 Pacific Golden-Plovers this morning. I am eagerly awaiting a new gull, shorebird or duck to show up. Wedge-tailed Shearwaters are arriving now, although I havent seen one is the last "expected" new bird for me here. Anything else is just the proverbial frosting on the cake.

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