Wings of desire: why birds captivate us from The Guardian

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Swallows nesting in Knossos Palace, Crete. Photo Chris Fremantle

Swallows nesting in Knossos Palace, Crete. Photo Chris Fremantle

Our behaviour is causing a mass extinction on the planet and birds are one of the many lifeforms suffering.  Mark Cocker’s new book and the cover article, Wings of desire: why birds captivate us, in this week’s Guardian Review  explores the relationship between humans and birds in practical, cultural and spiritual terms.  It clearly articulates thousands of reasons beyond the loss of biodiversity for us to make more space for birds in our lives.

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A Silver Sheen to . . . well, you know.

Yes. So.

Garbage didn’t work. Natural fibers were rejected. Booming school has apparently been a failure. In the meantime, an ever-increasing parade of oil-soaked birds and the collapse of local industries.
What else can we do but laugh?

If there is a silver lining or sheen or gloss or whatever to the gulf spill, it’s that the insanely large catastrophe has spawned some of the best ecological humor in recent years.

Don’t EVEN try to take that the wrong way.

Pro comedy players like UCB Theater, The Daily Show and the Colbert Report have been defending ecosystems and decrying BP with their sharp and witty tools of trade. Most memorably, The Onion suggests a Massive Flow of Bullshit from BP Headquarters will drown us all.

It’s times like these that laughter literally heals. Which is not to say: it scrubs oily birds. Rather: it keeps ecological massacres such as these from driving you insane.

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