Friday, November 5, 2010

Birders As Art V


It's been a long time since we've had an entry here in the vaunted Birders As Art series, so I thought it would be time to revisit it.  We are in the midst of a much-ballyhooed Blog Surge after all.

Meet Alex, or as he prefers to be called, "Scar".  Alex was with me on Buldir Island for the entire summer.  Young Alex (who also prefers to be called "Arex") learned much about how blindingly dorky birdwatchers can be, and did everything he could to perpetuate the stereotypes.  Here you can see he is wearing matching field clothes, has a camera with telephoto lens (which he referred to as his "big gun"), and has some sort of ninja mask on. For reasons I don't understand, he is also wearing binoculars, a camera case, a backpack, maybe an ipod (playing nothing but bird calls, I assure you) and God knows what else....which seems inconvenient to me (I enjoy putting stuff down, personally), but goes along with the birder instinct of wearing tons and tons of accessories and accoutrements. Excellent. A classic, stunning example of the obsessed birder.

10 comments:

  1. I find myself on the minimalist end of the bird-nerd accoutrement spectrum these days. I spent a bird-lusty week this August along brazilian beaches in nothing but a Speedo and binoculars (no strap).

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  2. I think you could be at the forefront of the Nude Birding Movement my friend. I've heard some old stories about topless birding in Death Valley decades ago, but I guess that whole thing didnt pick up much momentum.

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  3. My son Tom Dunlap made a documentary about birders when he was finishing his BFA at University of Arizona. He was inspired by his brother Bob, who has been a birder from the age of 6 (or sometime around there - I can't recall). You can find Tom's film if you google the title "Life List" - DVD (2005). It won some small film festival awards, and it's funny in its clear exposition of birders' eccentricities. My son Bob has also been my inspiration for my fictional protagonist of my Birder Murder mystery series (on Amazon.com). I constantly have readers/birders telling me they know exactly who my characters 'really' are, even though they are fictional. I love your work with the HBP - very entertaining!!

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  4. i'm not sure that outfit qualifies as dorky. scary maybe: birding meets terrorist black-ops militia.

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  5. @Birdermurder...finally watching Life List right now, looks great! I'll have to check out the mysteries too!

    Coco - Only ninjas should dress like ninjas.

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  7. Birder ninja? My major professor used to say that no self-respecting person should never go out in the field poorly dressed. For example, camouflage attire should be restricted to military personnel. So, in support of the human birdwatcher project I must ask: are there any guidelines on proper attire?

    I like my old-timey cords, leather boots, and cotton tee under light-weight wool sweater. Never ever wear new-fangled fleece (static sucks). I draw the line at anything with a totally cool tag attached. I might be white but I am not old. What is acceptable to birder #1 and birder #7?

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    1. Cords! I forgot about cords...good call. Um, I have disdain for anything that makes you look like you are going on safari. I think the things field biologists often wear on the job (i.e. those stupid quick-dry pants) should not be what birders wear. Tilley hats are a bummer.

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  8. Hey Steve, only just now came across this gem! Hopefully this is the only photo of me and my 'Big Gun' out there on the interwebs....

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