Jeezum Crow! Is it February already?! I need to get my inspection sticker renewed.
Plenty of time this year because we’re getting an extra day. That’s right, it’s a leap year. Happy 24th birthday, Grandpa! See you at Mom’s house on the 29th.
But seriously, we need to take a moment to recognize the special reason this month was set aside for commemoration here in the U.S. I still remember the moving speech put forth by Illinois 10th District Representative John Edward Porter on that somber day in 1994: “Mr. Speaker, I would like to recognize February, one of the most difficult months in the United States for wild birds, as National Bird Feeding Month.”
What’d you expect, a resolution concerning Black History Month? The man’s a Republican. If a child interrupted him during his lunch break in the park to share a Black History Month fact with him, the kid could expect a backhand for scaring off the Columba livias he was trying to feed popcorn to.
So, in honor of John Porter’s daring proposition to designate February for such a noble cause, let us each learn something interesting about an endangered species of North American bird.
The “vulnerable” short-tailed albatross produces a stomach oil that it barfs up on predators to deter them from attacking, much like the wily tri-Delts at a frat party.
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): Although “endangered,” many marbled murrelets munch mightily on most minute maritime minions and mainly make magnificent, makeshift, moist, moss-based, and mostly maintained nests.
PISCES (Feb. 19-Mar. 20): The “vulnerable” short-tailed albatross produces a stomach oil that it barfs up on predators to deter them from attacking, much like the wily tri-Delts at a frat party.
ARIES (Mar. 21-Apr. 19): The vulnerable Attwater’s Greater prairie-chicken, a Louisiana native, has bright orange air sacs on either side of his neck that he inflates to attract females, similar to the bright orange Lamborghini I saw parked in front of Twin Peaks this afternoon.
TAURUS (Apr. 20-May 20): There are less than 600 endangered whooping cranes left on the planet. Incidentally, that’s the same number of University of Alabama freshmen who remain uninfected with herpes by the end of the fall semester.
GEMINI (May 21-June 20): The wood stork is considered a bird of “least concern” and favors hanging around cypress marshes. It is easily found by listening for its telltale cry of “choot ’em!”
CANCER (June 21-July 22): Masked bobwhites are “near threatened” and, much like voters in local elections, are shy and elusive creatures that can be difficult to observe.
LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): Sandhill cranes are another bird of least concern, and they engage in unison calling when in a committed relationship. Ironically, despite not being in a committed relationship, my neighbor regularly engages in quite vocal unison calling with a number of females every month.
VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): Mexican spotted owls are near threatened and, much like married couples in a network sitcom, despite being monogamous, they do not breed every year.
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): The red-cockaded woodpecker is vulnerable and rarely visible except during the breeding season. There are at least five easily accessible dirty jokes in that sentence. Help yourself.
SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): Black-capped vireos are vulnerable, and the male cares for the young while the female renests with another male. Similar activity can be seen on the various incarnations of The Real Housewives of “¦ series on Bravo.
SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): Although the Kirtland’s warbler is near threatened, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources recently released an optimistic report on its recovery. It was unable to offer a similar report on Detroit.
CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): The vulnerable Florida scrub-jay is the only species of bird endemic to the state of Florida. Because of this, fans of the bird will travel for miles to watch it successfully evade predators to deliver food to its nest, where it then kneels down on one knee and, in full view of as many people as possible, “humbly” thanks its lord and savior for the victory.