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MLK January 15, 2016

Posted by indigobunting in Uncategorized.
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I once had a relationship with a guy who had the same birthday as Martin Luther King Jr., and twice or thrice I almost had a relationship with a guy on whose birthday MLK was assassinated. I had a hopeless crush on assassinationday guy, and he liked me too, but just enough to let me know that he did and then do nothing about it. This is confusing for an introverted teenager—getting all the signs, then getting shut down. After a two-year gap—during which I never saw assassinationday guy, and I started seeing birthdayguy, a very nice guy—I ran into assassinationday guy, he being home on break from college, and he led me on again, and my desire to squash that old perceived unrequitedness was such that I wasn’t as nice to birthdayguy as I should have been, not fair at all really, but in the long run, of course, assassinationday guy again failed to follow up on what I perceived as emotional promises (which means I failed to follow up on my own emotional promises to birthdayguy). And I was always aware of this weird little MLK trivia bit because that is how my weird little brain works: One is birth. One is death. Shouldn’t the choice be obvious?

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4BY4: Quarterly Report and Summation January 14, 2016

Posted by indigobunting in Uncategorized.
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After September, I only added one more bird to my list, on October 7: the yellow-rumped warbler, which had somehow eluded me til then. After that? Nothing new. Apparently this is not unusual—in 2013 I didn’t add a single species in the last quarter; in 2014 I added two, and somehow, in 2012, I added five. Still: always slow without travel. (And I can’t count the birds I saw in London, what with it being another continent.)

So here is the 2015 list in its entirety, a poem of bird names: downy woodpecker, black-capped chickadee, white-breasted nuthatch, American goldfinch, tufted titmouse, northern cardinal, blue jay, house sparrow, dark-eyed junco, purple finch, red-bellied woodpecker, mourning dove, hairy woodpecker, common raven, American crow, red-tailed hawk, rock dove/pigeon, European starling, rough-legged hawk, snow goose, osprey, bald eagle, snowy owl, American robin, common eider, herring gull, red-breasted merganser, long-tailed duck (oldsquaw), black-backed gull, mallard, common redpoll, wild turkey, pileated woodpecker, eastern bluebird, American kestrel, northern mockingbird, turkey vulture, Canada goose, common loon, common merganser, common goldeneye, song sparrow, hooded merganser, red-winged blackbird, common grackle, horned grebe, pied-bill grebe, bufflehead, American black duck, merlin, great egret, snowy egret, eastern phoebe, ring-necked duck, green-winged teal, killdeer, glossy ibis, American wigeon, greater yellowlegs, Harlequin duck, surf scoter, black scoter, northern rough-winged swallow, double-crested cormorant, great blue heron, house finch, woodcock, Wilson’s snipe, belted kingfisher, pine siskin, tree swallow, chipping sparrow, broad-winged hawk, chimney swift, rose-breasted grosbeak, yellow-bellied sapsucker, eastern towhee, field sparrow, black-and-white warbler, yellow warbler, gray catbird, white-throated sparrow, brown-headed cowbird, swamp sparrow, spotted sandpiper, barn swallow, tree swallow, northern flicker, wood duck, warbling vireo, white-crowned sparrow, Baltimore oriole, bobolink, common yellowthroat, eastern kingbird, eastern meadowlark, barred owl, ovenbird, ruby-throated hummingbird, indigo bunting, veery, house wren, brown thrasher, chestnut-sided warbler, red-eyed vireo, ruffed grouse, scarlet tanager, wood thrush, American redstart, hermit thrush, eastern wood-pewee, northern harrier, great-crested flycatcher, common nighthawk, cedar waxwing, fish crow, Carolina wren, Carolina chickadee, black vulture, great-horned owl, black-throated green warbler, black-throated blue warbler, whip-poor-will, red-breasted nuthatch, and yellow-rumped warbler. (125 species. 2014: 118. 2013: 173. 2012: 115.)

Max January 4, 2016

Posted by indigobunting in Uncategorized.
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Talk about denial.

On December 8, the day of my last entry, the day that I was denying the horrors that are the holiday season (some expected highlights: no well-thought-out present for Tim, a should-have-been-7-hour drive taking 10¼, the package I mailed priority on December 15 arriving at its destination on January 2, and reminders of the way things are as opposed to the way I wish they could have been/could be)—on that Tuesday, Max died.

I heard about it the next morning.

It’s hard to wrap one’s head around death, especially sudden death. His wife, my college friend Lisa, got up that morning and went to work like every other day. When she got home, she found him. The services were held on the weekend, where Lisa herself spoke (I cannot imagine being able to do this). I couldn’t be there, but through the wonders of technology, I was able to watch the service later.

The next Monday I was still thinking, “A week ago Max was alive.” How quickly a person’s entire world can change, with no warning. I ache for Lisa.

And I can’t believe he’s gone.