Monday, January 31, 2011

I'm Stepping Out, I'm Standing Up

Allen the Hummingbird. Ventura, CA.

Sometimes it's hard writing a blog that is the Zeitgeist of a whole generation of birders. It's a lot of weight on my shoulders. The Great Ornithologist Felonious Jive has taken to the bottle in order to cope with it all. He keeps muttering about declaring war on the Mexican Army, but with only an army of nerds (birders) at his disposal, I think his chances of Victory are slim to none. I suggested that he start his own drug cartel, which he seems to be taking seriously....

Common Ground-Doves on the march. Photographed at the Salton Sea, CA.

Strange ruminations on a cloudy morning in San Francisco. I'm considering changing the name of my Moderate Year from El Año Tranquilo to something a little more fitting in light of recent events....something like The Gnarly Year....also, I think my year list is hovering somewhere in the high 300's already, which is pretty crazy for a modest birder such as myself. What can I say, there are scads of birds in Mexico. Que intenso.

Red-tailed Hawk. Martinez, CA.

Yes....perhaps an agonizing reappraisal of 2011 is already necessary....and it's only February 1! The Pursuit of Happiness ended in a bloody heap at the bottom of a cliff when 2010 kicked the bucket. The vultures are circling overhead....with 2012 around the corner, these may truly be The End Times.....

Which reminds me....I am amazed at the number of people who have asked me, usually after a couple drinks, if I think the world is really going to end in 2012. Perhaps it is because I am a Scientist, not a religious maniac, and my answer carries a lot of weight. But seriously. Why do people give this any kind of credibility? Its like Y2K all over again. Those damn Mayans have people in a tizzy. There have always been, and will always be, people claiming the world is about to end, and until we see mushroom clouds on the horizon or an enormous asteroid plunging through the atmosphere, we have more pressing concerns.

Snowy Egrets, survivors of the Plume Trade Holocaust in the early 1900's, know a lot more about extinction than people do. Martinez, CA.


  1. That hummer is stunning!

    Re: 2012. I've not heard anything about it, but really, didn't we leave the dark ages long ago? Isn't basic education and aren't libraries free in the U.S.? Are people content to be MALLEABLE/so vulnerable to manipulation? Learn/teach critical thinking and your life will change.

    High 300s in JANUARY is INSANE!!! woah.

  2. No, kinda, and yes. By high I meant low..when your brain has melted and recongealed after seeing so many new birds, you cant expect much.