Friday, February 09, 2007

The aging of Jib

I'm not much of a bird watcher, and I never have been. I can name a small handful of birds and that's it. Last summer I began filling the bird feeder on my deck as a nice gesture to the lovely Mrs. Jib, though, and my curiosity grew over the different bird species I was seeing. Not to a great degree, mind you. Dingy little birds are still dingy little birds to me, but some of the unique ones I began to wonder about. Finally, some black birds with a purple irradescence began to visit the bird feeder. I actually researched what these birds and learned that they were some sort of grackle. I even took a couple of pictures. By fall, I completely forgot about them.

Then I read this story tonight. It appears that the great-tailed grackle is a unique sight here in Wisconsin. At the mention of the word grackle, my mind flashed back to the grackles from the bird feeder this summer. I'm ashamed to admit that I was excited at the thought that some rare bird to the area had visited my bird feeder. I hurriedly went back through my photos to see if the great-tailed grackle had made a pit stop at the Jib homestead. I studied the photos, only to determine that it wasn't the great-tailed grackle but rather the common grackle that had made my backyard home for a short time. I was disappointed.

This lead me to one conclusion. If not for the presence of the lovely Mrs. Jib in my life, I would now be living the life of a 70 year old man, spending all of my free time at the park feeding bread crumbs to the pigeons. Just the same, it is in my future, my genes. My father, who has has my mother in his life, is migrating towards the birds. They have more bird feeders per square foot of property than anyone I know. So if you see me muttering to myself in the park and tossing bread crumbs in the near future, please walk away. I don't want you to see me that way.

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