Anyone with two eyes and a heart full of music can tell that it’s spring here at Vassar. The trees are blooming, and the planters are filled with tulips paid for by millions of dollars in alumni donations because they would rather have the landscaping team reseed the grass along the paths every other day than give to scholarships or fund the humanities.
It’s a magical time of year, one in which I’m reminded that even seven inch inseams on men’s shorts make my already short legs look even smaller, and I sweat through the armpits of my shirt in the afternoon before freezing in the evening. Who doesn’t love spring?!
As it’s a wonderful and joyous season, I do have one very small, very insignificant problem. Especially compared to the exuberant regrowth occurring in every patch of dirt on this miracle that is our planet, this is a small complaint, but, for what it’s worth, I would really like to find a way to get birds to stop mating outside my window.
It’s not the fact that they’re having sex that bothers me. I am incredibly sex positive; I read all the pamphlets and posters the Office of Health Education leaves in the Deece and house bathrooms. Sex is great—yay sex! No, my issue is that I’m usually peacefully asleep at 5 a.m. If I am awake that early, it’s for no longer than five minutes to go to that aforementioned bathroom. But now that the birds are trying to procreate, it’s very difficult to fall back asleep even with an empty bladder.
They make these horrible noises like, “caw caw SQUAK” or “DEDEDE DEEEE DOO DEEE DOO.” I guess those ones don’t come across as that obnoxious in print, but anyone would want to pull out their own hair no matter whether they hear or read the noises that sounds like “KICKLEKICKLEKICKLE HEEEHAAAW.”
So the last half of that noise is a donkey noise, but you get the idea. It’s annoying.
The noises aren’t even the worst part. All these birds get so territorial. One of them keeps flying into my window because he thinks it’s another bird. If the bird songs didn’t put things into perspective, imagine a bird attacking his own reflection in your window until he dies. Fifty-six birds in the past two weeks have met their ends that way at my window alone. I keep seeing them fall. It’s upsetting.
Not to mention the number of times I have been attacked by a bird that felt I threatened its nest. In fairness to the cardinal that pulled out some of my hair, I was attempting to hide a cowbird’s egg in their nest so it would get fed preferentially because the cowbird baby is larger than the cardinal babies.
In fairness to myself, I was just exploring various biologically based constructs of femininity since so many people firmly believe gender is firmly biologically determined across the whole animal kingdom. Turns out it’s not, and being a trans human is entirely valid, in case anyone was wondering. It wasn’t worth losing the left half of my hair over learning something I already knew, but I had just conditioned it, so at least those magical little cardinal babies have a soft nest to grow up in.
The point is, if you are a bird reading this, please stop trying to mate outside my window. Things are hard enough now that my eternal battle with my sweat glands heats up, and I really need to sleep past 5 a.m. If anything is allowed to mate outside my window, it’s a swarm of apis mellifera, because I really like honey.