I've got these things... These things that I feel the need to rant about... Yet turning them each into a blog post would make me look like a whiner, so I decided to just squeeze several little rants into one post... Here we go:
1.) - Anti-eBird-users...
I understand that everyone has their own "things" that they do... eBird wants me to submit complete checklists, and I tell eBird that I don't want to. Straight up. But you don't hear me actively trying to persuade OTHER birders to STOP submitting complete checklists, just because I'm not thrilled with the feature. I'd feel like a bit of a jerk.
Which brings me to my point - people who are actively against the use of eBird drive me nuts. If you don't like it - don't use it - but it's the bloody future of bird-record-keeping, whether you like it or not. Sure, it has some issues - but it can be fantastic when used properly and is light years faster than everything else.
2.) - Publications
I feel that this is practically the same issue as #1, but in reverse. I've spent some time over the past few years trying to make my writing sound good so someones will publish some of my thoughts. I had always enjoyed firing off unedited blog posts at a moment's notice, but then someone convinced me that getting your words formally published made them all the more special. Well guess what - after a few years of dabbling in the field, it frackin sucks.
The time spent writing increases tenfold, just to enjoy a flurry of edits from someone who wouldn't recognize you from a Lama, and several months later you reach a point where you'd rather be eating dirt than re-read your draft a 42nd time. All this just to get it published in a journal (if you're lucky).
I understand the value is still there for a number of situations. You want your ideas heard by as many people as possible. Yet since this little thing called the internet came around, the value is virtually nothing for someone in my position. It's archaic.
3.) - Facebook
After extensive research, I have concluded that Facebook STILL isn't for me. I know it's great for millions of people, and I applaud everyone involved. I can't stand it. So with that said, I'm still trying to make a page that non-facebook-users can still visit if they're interested. If I'm lucky we'll get 10 people to "like" this thing before the birth of my second child...
(There's nothing really there yet, but I'm curious to know if you can see the page without being a facebooker)
4.) - Pope Francis
This guy is DA MAN. From Time:
In his recent encyclical, Pope Francis said that, “doomsday predictions” about the environment “can no longer be met with irony or disdain.” On Thursday, he argued the same could be said of economic injustices: “Time, my brothers and sisters, seems to be running out; we are not yet tearing one another apart, but we are tearing apart our common home.”
“Let us say no to an economy of exclusion and inequality, where money rules, rather than service. That economy kills. That economy excludes. That economy destroys Mother Earth.”
5.) - Retiring.. I'd kinda like to do it now... Too soon? Is there any way an avid naturalist can make a decent living, and still have time to be an avid naturalist?
6.) - People who complain or hinder, but offer no solution. Get out of the way - would ya!
7.) - Landfills... As a birder, is there anything worse than knowing that there are thousands of large white-headed gulls happily gorging themselves on garbage at this very moment - but we aren't allowed inside to see them? I haven't run the figures yet, but I get the strong impression that there is a higher percentage of vagrant gulls at landfills than at other food sources. Just check out a place like Pelee Island. The place can have several thousand young/summering gulls - but never quite produces the marvel of a landfill with stupidly ugly (and rare) gulls.
8.) - HOV lanes for the Pan Am Games - they're only for a few weeks - settle down, would ya? Yeesh.
Ok, that should do it...
Quiz Results - thanks to those who played along:
1. Nashville Warbler
2. Magnolia Warbler
3. Northern Mockingbird
4. Orchard Oriole
5. Red-bellied Woodpecker6. Gray Catbird
7. Summer Tanager
8. Ruby-throated Hummingbird
9. Eastern Bluebird
10. Philadelphia Vireo
11. Mallard, Wood Duck, Wood Duck, Wood Duck, Mallard, Mallard