Friday, September 05, 2008

Only 1.5 Inches Tall and STILL Kicking Ass

One of the benefits of living where I do - in the Great Suburban Outback, close to but not right in a world-class city - is the surfeit of wildlife available for viewing and interacting. I've blogged about foxes and spiders and fish and the (possibly) mythical cougar, but of all God's GSO critters I'm convinced hummingbirds are the coolest.

My "Guide To North American Birds and Other Cool Stuff" calls hummingbirds 'pugnacious.' Boy is the guide ever right about that. I've got 2 feeders out for 'em and they never cease squabbling, chasing, scolding and fighting over the nectar...kinda like drunk men in a dance club at closing time. But they're only about an inch and a half tall...oh wait...the 'drunk men' analogy just gets better and better...

They (the hummingbirds not the drunk men...) are colorful, acrobatic, territorial, loud and living testimony that good things do indeed come in small packages. In my front yard there's a long-dead American Elm tree which I refuse to cut down (despite lots of advice to the contrary from chainsaw-wielding drunk men) 'cuz it's become a haven for resting hummingbirds and the occasional pileated woodpecker. The former use it as a staging ground for attacks on nectar-hungry interlopers. The latter use it as a 50 ft. high bug buffet, sounding like machine guns while the wood chips fly.

Given that the GSO is properly described as 'country' and those dipwads at Comcast can't keep the cable working for more than about 10 minutes at a time, I've gotten used to settling into a front porch chair, glass of Cotes du Rhone in hand, and enjoying some FREE entertainment. What could be better? Regretfully, I'll soon have to say 'buh-bye" for the winter. Safe travels, my little pugnacious friends.

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