Tuesday 28 February 2012

Meet Occupy London

Not really! Hah! Just trying to wind [some of] you up! Can you imagine? Me, scum-of-the-earth dangerously intolerant right-wing fascist Osborne love-child nasty unpleasant financial worker bastard and single-handed perpetrator of massive social and economic injustice, publicly airing anything at all on people who feel so strongly about capitalism that they are prepared to live in a tent on the steps of St Paul’s Cathedral for months in order to make their point? Oh, except most of them go home at night. No no, it would be very very wrong of me to say anything at all on this [my] blog about anything that might be remotely controversial or have a whiff of soapbox about it. So I shan’t. And those of you whose comments were no doubt ready-formed the moment you saw the title of this post, well, perhaps you have something to say about birds?

No? Funny that. Not to worry though, I do. Lots. In fact that’s what I write about most of the time. Parakeets, Pigeons, Ducks, Woodpeckers, Wheatears, Skylarks, Sandpipers, Yellowthroats, Northern Waterthrushes, Blue-cheeked Bee-eaters, Fea’s Petrels... Nice and safe, birds.  Guaranteed not to raise aaany hackles. I was a bit busy yesterday, so didn’t see any - this is the trouble with trying to write a bird blog. Of course I could just write nothing..... Aaaanyway, today the plan was to rectify that, but once again it didn’t happen. Actually I tell a lie – I left on the school run a little bit early so I could check the Basin on the way. Virtually nothing. And almost unbelievably it soon became less than virtually nothing as man was walking his dog across one of the fairways closest to the water and a bunch of them flew off. Is nothing sacred?! Pfffffffff.

Talking of dogs, I recently discovered that one of my Twitter acolytes is a beagle. No, really. Well, not actually really, obviously, but really enough in the same sense that a cat that wandered onto the pitch at Anfield a couple of weeks ago is also a Twitter user..... Yes, people with mouth-watering amounts of spare time are pretending to be animals on Twitter - and some say that Twitter is a complete waste of time. Honestly. I haven’t been through the whole list to discover if any of the others are animals, but assuming the rest are human, if you take me as a proxy - with approximately one third of a percent of my followers being dogs, and Twitter as a whole having half a billion users - that means that there are 1.6 million people pretending to be dogs online. If that isn’t a tragic statistic, I don’t know what is. Three thousand dogs set up new accounts every day, and Lady Gaga, Twitter's most-followed person, has over 60,000 canine chums – which goes a long way to explaining that meat dress she wore last year. It wasn’t a statement designed to provoke outrage, comment and discussion; no, it was simply for her adoring fans.

Woof woof!


  1. So how do you feel about cats? c9 million in Britain taking an average of 10 birds per year then going home to eat catty-yum-yum a lot of which is made from processed sand-eels. And we wonder why Arctic Terns, Kittiwakes and others are in trouble? Gimme dogs anyday. jhwyllie@gmail.com.

  2. Oh I could get to cats, for many of the reasons you mention. However I have yet to be bitten by a cat, jumped on by a cat, see a cat chase Skylarks across their protected and sign-posted breeding area, or be verbally abused by a cat's owner.

  3. My most memorable cat moment was my sister's adorable little puss-tum come strolling into the house with a Jack Snipe in its jaws - still the only Jack Snipe I've ever seen in Scotland (it was still gasping its few final breaths). I now live in Ireland and every spring get to see several Song Thrush and Blacbird nests pillaged by darling little moggies. I've also been jumped on by the darling little fuckers to the extent they've drawn blood and been admonished (that's a euphemism by the way) by owners for slinging mud/stones/anything at them. I once saw one play with a rat before letting it go. I've seen dogs kill dozens of rats and a couple of minks too. I guess I'm a dog person..! Oh, by the way, I don't have any pets, not even a goldfish! Best wishes, Julian.

  4. Jono, thought you might enjoy this......


    (and p.s., not too sure about being a 'local blogger' anymore - is promotion up the table imminent?!)


  5. No matter how early you set the alarm to walk round your local patch, even before dawn there will be legions of dog walkers with sometimes several dogs each that will have chased almost every wild creature away. And the little barrels of joy bark and yap for hours for no reason while their owners stand around as if it's enjoyable for everyone else around. I can't say I've ever felt threatened by a cat, which is more than can be said for dogs - on several occasions I've had to control an aggressive dog myself (by defending myself or by using my voice and body language) because the owner couldn't control them. Cats probably kill more birds, but in terms of disturbance, dogs are way ahead. Of course many dogs are very nice and have responsible owners, but a sizeable enough minority need to sort it out. Ah, you can't beat a good ol' rant.
    You get the idea..

  6. Please stay a local blogger,I can get all that right wing crap from the press,(if I wanted to !),when you write about birding an family its honestly one of the best bloggs going.

    Laurence Drummond

  7. Hey Mark, I was wondering about that - 'tis raptor season quite soon, we're going to miss you!

    Joe - love the fact people are ranting in the comments now!

    And Laurence, I didn't say a thing! But do go read the Daily Mash in the link above! And do not fear, today's post, ie the next one, will be about LOCAL BIRDING. With possibly a right-wing dog thrown in.

  8. Jono, I do enjoy that now that you got us all riled up for a rant, and left us high and dry, your commenters have made one for you. (Fine with me if cats are stricken off the earth entirely. I can foam at the mouth about off-leash dogs with the best of them, but it doesn't have to do with birds, more with having kids who I'd rather not see bitten by your out-of-control flea-bitten... oh look, I've given you another rant, haven't I?)

    I still think it's funny (but kind of reassuring since I am a big old leftie in my world) what passes for right-wing around here.