Performancing Metrics

6.02.2011

Birds on My Brain


Every year, right outside our apartment, little sparrows make a nest in a hole in the neighboring building. While this may not thrill my neighbors, I adore it. The mama and daddy sparrow spend weeks finding the perfect bits of twigs, twine, and straw to make a cozy home. If we dare to sit outside, the birds will swoop around us, angrily chirping, dissuading us from getting any closer. Then, quite suddenly, one day our balcony is filled with very faint, but distinct, peeping sounds. The parent birds switch into overdrive, flying in a constant loop of searching for grubs and returning to sate the tiny throats calling out for more. At some point, the babies begin to peek out of the nest, tiny, dinosaur-looking heads eying the world below. Even when they learn to fly, they stick close to home for most of the summer, the whole family squishing into the once spacious hole at dusk.


These simple little birds are a part of my summer tradition. I peek at them from inside of the apartment so they won't see me and become alarmed. I watch them as they grow and learn to fly from the nest to the branch, from the branch to the tree, and from the tree to the world. And in the fall, when they fly away, I feel as though it is only right that summer now come to an end.

But this year, the birds didn't come.


I feel sick actually writing the words. Where are they? Were they new birds every year? Were they the previous year's babies, all grown up? Why aren't they nesting here this year? What has gone wrong??

I was feeling especially despondent about the birds yesterday morning when I got dressed. I had wasted a good five minutes that morning, peering into the little hole for signs of life to no avail. So when it came time to dress for the day, I ditched my regularly scheduled outfit and put on the brightest, most summertime dress I could find. Yes, I perked up. They're sparrows for goodness' sake! It's not the end of the world! But I might have sprinkled some birdseed out on the balcony, just in case...

Dress: Helen Wang (Consigned, Second Time Around)
Cardigan: H&M
Shoes: Modcloth
Necklace: StyleFixx
Sunglasses: Urban Outfitters