To Kill a Cockblockingbird

31 Jul

When I killed a mockingbird, I of course went and looked up what killing a mockingbird was supposed to mean in TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD.  I figured it was some deep voodoo curse or something.  Some backwoods Alabama legend where you kill a mockingbird and your family is cursed and your children and your children’s children.

Turns out, no, it’s just Gregory Peck being an asshole.  What he’s saying is: if you are going to kill a bird, do not kill the mockingbird in particular.  Kill a blue jay instead, because the blue jay’s call is annoying.  Whereas the mockingbird creates beautiful songs.

Which– it depends. The mockingbirds around here aren’t covering nightingales or some shit like that.  What mockingbirds do is move into an area and sing the songs of competing birds to fake them out.  So a sparrow flies by, considers nesting, and then hears the song of another sparrow and thinks: fuck it; I’ll move on.

Except the mockingbirds on my street have been so successful at this that the only birds left are crows, jays, grackles and tits.  Tough, guttural sounding birds who don’t give a fuck about the mockingbird; aren’t afraid of their own kind, or of anything.  So the mockingbird just sits there all day croaking and rasping like a blue jay, only ten times as loud, on a branch right outside my bedroom window at 4AM.

You hear bird song that is not a mockingbird, you suddenly realize how rare that sound is.  You are used to hearing the songs of ten different birds on a loop but louder and shriller than it should be.  Somehow the belligerent tone of the mockingbird suffuses these songs.  It sounds sweeter and more authentic from the sparrow, but you never hear the sparrow, because the mockingbirds, their strategy of loudly singing every other bird’s song louder and higher and harder, has driven these other birds away.

What is the fucking mockingbird hoping to accomplish here?  What is the god damn beef with the sparrows?  Are they concerned that there will be a dearth of berries or something?  Every berry-bearing tree in Southern California is so heavy with fruit that the streets are black with overripe dropped berry juice.  Why do the mockingbirds have to selfishly hoard these resources.  There is plenty for the sparrows.

This is the society we live in.  A society of mockingbirds.  Money, pussy, respect– all going only to the loudest, the brashest, the most aggressive, the dishonest and salesmanly.  The bird that will fuck you over is the one who wins.  The rest of these delicate passerine birds are left to starve.

18 Responses to “To Kill a Cockblockingbird”

  1. sylviasarah July 31, 2012 at 5:21 pm #

    You’re the mocking bird right?

  2. Springly July 31, 2012 at 5:50 pm #

    You managed to almost reach the end without hamfisted societal commentary, too bad it couldn’t last.

    • Shaddap August 1, 2012 at 8:52 pm #

      Don’t say another Goddamn word. Up until now, I’ve been polite. If you say anything else – word one – I will kill myself. And when my tainted spirit finds its destination, I will topple the master of that dark place. From my black throne, I will lash together a machine of bone and blood, and fueled by my hatred for you this fear engine will bore a hole between this world and that one. When it begins, you will hear the sound of children screaming – as though from a great distance. A smoking orb of nothing will grow above your bed, and from it will emerge a thousand starving crows. As I slip through the widening maw in my new form, you will catch only a glimpse of my radiance before you are incinerated. Then, as tears of bubbling pitch stream down my face, my dark work will begin. I will open one of my six mouths, and I will sing the song that ends the Earth.

      • sylviasarah August 1, 2012 at 9:18 pm #

        Are we having a “The most creative reply contest”?

      • Paddahs August 1, 2012 at 9:23 pm #

        Yo like, the most merciful thing in the world, I think, is the inability of the human mind to correlate all its contents. We live on a placid island of ignorance in the midst of black seas of infinity, and it was not meant that we should voyage far. The sciences, each straining in its own direction, have hitherto harmed us little; but some day the piecing together of dissociated knowledge will open up such terrifying vistas of reality, and of our frightful position therein, that we shall either go mad from the revelation or flee from the light into the peace and safety of a new dark age and shit.

      • This guy August 2, 2012 at 6:09 am #

        @Paddahs – What the fuck are you talking about?

      • Paddahs August 2, 2012 at 4:25 pm #

        Learn to read.

      • Springly August 4, 2012 at 5:07 pm #

        This blog is funny, and I can’t help reading it. But if tacos is allowed to make fun of women, the infirm, the poor, fucking everyone then I’m certainly allowed to make fun of him.

      • Shaddap August 5, 2012 at 11:46 pm #

        DT gets away with it because he’s actually funny.

  3. pffffffftttsssssssiimmbllllllddddddnnnnnnnnn July 31, 2012 at 7:45 pm #

    I’ll tell ya what, Blue Jays are some nasty motherfuckers. When I was younger I used to cut through this overgrown abandoned lot on my way to school. There was a Blue Jay nesting in a Sumac tree maybe 50 ft. from the beaten foot path that I would walk along, and it must’ve had eggs in the nest because it would dive bomb me. For about a month straight, every day, when I walked by this thing would shoot straight up out of the tree and swoop down on my head, screeching and clawing like a maniac. It got to the point where I started running full speed through the lot like it was no-man’s land to try to avoid this thing. Then one day I came through and it was sprawled out on the ground dead, feathers scattered all over the place. I don’t know what killed it, but I’d like to think it tried that dive bombing shit on some third degree blackbelt who savagely roundhouse kicked it out of mid-air.

  4. Anonymous July 31, 2012 at 10:26 pm #

    the loudest, the brashest, the most aggressive, the dishonest and salesmanly.
    you put that on your business card, right?

  5. Anonymous August 1, 2012 at 1:29 pm #

    I like your blog because I frequently learn words I didn’t know. Passerine. Mmmmm.

    • delicioustacos August 1, 2012 at 1:56 pm #

      From the Latin “Passer,” meaning “sparrow,” “finch,” etc. Was the title of Catullus’ book of poems; he used the term for his penis.

      • pffffffftttsssssssiimmbllllllddddddnnnnnnnnn August 8, 2012 at 4:24 pm #

        “Passera” the Italian word for sparrow, is used as slang for pussy in some parts of Italy. Reminds me of this:

  6. Bronan the Barbarian! August 2, 2012 at 3:21 am #

    Every time I roll into one of those crappy neighborhood Chili’s knockoff bars, there is guaranteed to be some band playing shitty classic rock covers so washed-up cougars can dance with fat middle-aged guys in Hawaiian shirts. The mockingbird is the bird equivalent of that band. Terminate with extreme prejudice.

    • cathy August 2, 2012 at 9:50 am #

      i recognize bronan’s name from unleashthebeef

      • Bronan the Barbarian! August 2, 2012 at 12:25 pm #

        Hi, I’m Bronan the Barbarian! You may remember me from such educational films as “Get Confident, Stupid!” and “Firecrackers: The Silent Killer.”

      • Cathy August 9, 2012 at 6:49 pm #

        I enjoyed reading your greatest hits last night especially angry black woman trolling

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