[Tweeters] My Bird Totem

Jeff Gibson gibsondesign at msn.com
Thu Dec 5 13:36:36 PST 2013

I think it was about thirty years ago (so many decades, so little time), that I chose my own personal bird totem: a bird that I have a lot of affinity for, and has many qualities that I share. A familiar.

After reading some of my posts, you might assume it is some sort of Loon, or a Turkey, possibly. Certainly not the mighty Golden Eagle, ferocious Great Horned Owl, or brilliantly zippy Anna's Hummingbird.

No, my bird buddy is the Hutton's Vireo. Here are some of the many reasons why.

First of all, we are both shy dwellers of the Puget Sound lowlands, mostly - we like lurking in the bushes looking for bugs and berries and stuff. You might go out birding a lot and rarely see us - just the way we like it. We are kind of sneaky.

We are both sometimes mistaken for others. I hear it fairly often "oh, you look just like so and so!" - I've never met one of my alleged doppelgangers, (OK maybe a few times), but my little vireo friend is often mistaken for a Ruby-crowned Kinglet. Me , the Vireo, and the Kinglet all like to wear pretty drab outfits, but the Hutton's and I wear bluish or grayish pants. The Kinglet - well, lets just say that me and the vireo wouldn't be caught dead wearing black leotards with yellow shoes!

And those Kinglet's are a little bit overly perky in our opinion. The Vireo and I, are not in so much of a hurry, but we get around fine nonetheless. And of course the male Kinglet is prone to blowing his little red stack sometimes - what's up with that! Oh well, different strokes for different folks.

The Hutton's Vireo and I also share some communication traits. We both tend to say the same things over and over. My wife has complained about it. We can't remember long complicated songs all that well. Occasionally we surprise others with a goofy little call, just to get attention.

Not into mass flocking, we prefer to occasionally enjoy the company of smaller diverse groups. I never saw a Hutton's Vireo in the Anchor Pub, but it would've fit right in, I'm sure.

Well, that's about enough of that! I can't divulge any more information that might break the totemic code. There are spiritual relations and communications that must remain strictly Gibson -Vireo business. I hope you understand.

Jeff Gibson

Everett Wa

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