Flightless Birds- Meet the Kakapo

Meet the kakapo, also known as an “owl parrot” is also a native of New Zealand. This nocturnal parrot has an owl’s face, penguin’s stance, and duck’s gait. It is truly a strange bird—but also a beautiful one, with bright green-brown feathers. It can grow up to 2 feet in length, and is the world’s heaviest parrot. The males make a distinctive booming call that sounds like a one-bird jug band, which can be heard up to half a mile away!

Source: https://www.britannica.com/list/8-birds-that-cant-fly

I saw a seagull flying far from home

seagull1I live in Pasadena, so it’s surprising to me to see so many shore birds in the city. Near the Panera Restaurant where I like to have breakfast there are a group of seagulls that inhabit the parking lot, so I thought I’d find out what animal medicine these birds are attributed with. Here’s what I found:

“Seagulls are spiritual messengers that demonstrate that a higher communication with guides is taking place. He shows how to see above situations with a higher clarity and teaches that there are many perspectives to consider.

seagulls1Seagull shows a sense friendship and community and the cooperation that is needed for the whole to operate successfully. He teaches how to ride the currents of the mental, emotional and physical worlds. Are you going with the flow or fighting it? Are you cooperating with others? Are you open to your guides? Seagull can teach you many lessons of looking, living and being. It is time to listen and watch for the nuances and timing of action.”  Source: http://www.starstuffs.com/animal_totems/dictionary_of_birds.html


Don’t eat that angletwitch

earthwormAn angletwitch is an earthworm, the word originated in 14th century Merry Olde England from: Middle English angeltwicche, angeltwacche, from Old English angeltwæcce, angeltwicce, from angel hook + -twæcce, -twicce (from twiccian to pluck, catch hold of). Source: https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/angletwitch


weird-and-wonderful-words-book-coverThis word was found in the wonderful and often hilarious book: Weird and Wonderful Words, edited by Erin McKean


What weird and wonderful words do you have to share today? Please post them in the comments section with their meanings!!

Let us worship words!

oliver-wendell-holmes-sr-quoteOur word for today was found in a page in the Reader’s Digest:  epeolatry, meaning, the worship of words.

Etymology: From Greek, epos (word) + -latry (worship).


oliver-wendell-holmes-sr-1The first citation of the word is from Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr., in his 1860 book Professor at the Breakfast Table.

For another cool source for new words, visit: http://wordsmith.org/words/epeolatry.html

Squirrel away food for the future

oak tree-exI have 17 large trees surrounding my property, from oak and eucalyptus, to pine and peach and avocado, they attract and support many forms of wildlife. My yard is filled with birdsong and the chattering of the extensive squirrel family who live in the oaks. Squirrels are playful, as well as industrious, gathering the acorns from the oaks and divesting the pine trees of pine cones for their seeds.



Accordinsquirrel-eating-an-acorng to the Animal Medicine cards, Squirrel teaches humans to plan ahead for the winter, to store or “squirrel away” food for the time when food will become scarce. This idea can be expanded to mean one should be prepared for what the future may bring. (1)



squirrel-familySquirrels prepare for the future by storing acorns and sharing the bounty with the scurry (a group/family of squirrels is called a scurry). The term “dray” is specifically used to refer to a mother squirrel and her young. (2)

So, if squirrel has leapt playfully into your life today, remember to put some of your earnings and other resources aside for a rainy day!


medicine-card-bookSources cited:

(1) From the book “Medicine Cards” by Jamie Sams and David Carson-http://jamiesamsbooks.com/medicinecards.cfm

(2) https://www.reference.com/pets-animals/group-squirrels-called-69e09eb7aba12ffc




If you think signing a petition doesn’t matter, think again!

thumbs-upI receive information about environmental news from a great website called Daily Kos, here’s an email I recently received about a petition I signed regarding fracking:

Diane, Great news. You recently signed a petition to the EPA to retract their draft report’s conclusion that fracking was safe.



petition-against-frackingThis petition was part of a coalition effort with many other organizations, and nearly 110,000 people signed on. And the EPA listened. In its just-released final report, the EPA deleted the conclusion that fracking doesn’t have “widespread, systemic impacts” on drinking water. And instead its final report states that fracking can cause water contamination. This is a win for those of us fighting fracking, and for the many people who’ve suffered from water contamination due to fracking. And it’s a loss for the oil and gas industry, which has used the EPA’s draft report to claim that fracking is safe.


thumbs-up2Thank you for taking action. Sometimes, it’s hard to know if your petition signature will have an impact. But Daily Kos petitions are often part of larger campaigns, and they help make change happen. Our voices, together, can win campaigns. Thank you for adding your name and joining this fight, and please keep fighting. That will involve signing petitions, protesting in the streets, calling your elected officials, and/or whatever else your activism looks like. We’ll need all of it in the years ahead.

Thank you for all that you do, Mara Schechter, Daily Kos

Come on DOWN!!!

bards1My dear wordpress fans, I need your help! I’d like to host 2 new columns, one for Saturdays and one for Sundays. Please list the idea for your blog day in the comments section and I’ll arrange so that you can post and then respond to any comments on your blog day.

Everyone reading the blog can make suggestions for a thread (as I call them), and if you’d like to lead a thread on either Saturday or Sunday, do let me know!

HUZZAHHHHHHHHHHHHHH the Bards of the Blog!