Jay Bird don’t give a S%^#!

We all know this bird, a beautiful bird that inhabits most of the United States. Blue jays are very common except for the western states, where instead of blue jays they have stellar’s jays.  Blue jays are in the same family as crows, ravens, and magpies, and they have similar personality traits.

I find that the blue jay appears very frequently in my life. This doesn’t surprise me, because I have a deep, deep love of crows and ravens. I grew up in Flagstaff, AZ, where crows and even ravens are very common and I’ve spent hours observing these amazing birds. I’ve even done a dance piece about crows….

But now I live in Texas, where crows are few and far between.

I think this is where the blue jay comes in. I believe jays have come into my life to fill the void left by my beloved crows (side note: I saw a crow in my neighborhood the other day and I was ecstatic. I was driving at the time and I actually pulled the car over and sat and watched the crow for a while. There’s another one to add to the list of crazy things the neighbors have seen me do.).

Jays are very talkative and quite loquacious. They are also determined, assertive, curious, and vibrant. Yeah- I’d like to say that I am all of those things. Jays are also aggressive when it comes to protecting their mates, young, and territory. I’d say this also fits me. Although I have no human babies of my own you better think twice before you mess with my animal children, my students, or my husband.

Like crows and magpies, jays love shiny things…. need I say more? Just take one look at my jewelry and bead collection, not to mention all the curious knick-knacks around my house. Blue jay people love to follow their curiosities and go in many directions. They tend to be jack-of-all-trades, and love to know a little bit about everything.

I think I found a new spirit animal that I had overlooked before. I’ve always admired the beauty of the jay, but had never thought of it as a totem until one particular encounter. The blue jay did not just come quietly into my life. Instead she made a big show of it.

I currently live in Houston. Before that I lived in San Antonio where my husband and I were happily settled. Then I lost my job.

We were planning to make the best of it and stay in San Antonio when out of the blue I got a fantastic job in Houston. I couldn’t turn it down, but in order to take it I had to be living in Houston within a two-week span. So I grabbed the biggest, cheapest one-bedroom apartment I could find and my husband stayed in San Antonio to tie up loose ends. I spend the next few months driving back to San Antonio every weekend to pack up the house, and eventually my husband moved into the apartment with me.

I only had a six-month lease on the apartment because we knew we could not live very long in that situation. We are just not apartment dwellers, and we were crammed into 625 square feet with three cats, one dog, two 55-gallon lizard tanks, and one snake terrarium. Yikes. Plus we had no yard and we lived way to close to too many people.

But after those six months we moved into a large three-bedroom rental house with a nice backyard. We were thrilled.

Here’s where blue jay comes in….

It was only our second night in the house. We were both reveling in the fact that we could sleep with the windows open and enjoy the breezes and the quiet of the neighborhood. The sky was just beginning to lighten when I was awakened by the call of the blue jay.

This is not a beautiful thing. Jays can mimic many bird and even human sounds, but their common call is a very loud, high-pitched “pew” sound.

This particular jay was sitting in a tree as close as possible to my bedroom window just pewing and pewing. I yelled at it, but blue jay don’t give a s^%#.

I got up, and barefoot and wearing my nightgown I went after that blue jay. I ran into the yard, where I could barely see anything yet, and began fumbling for sticks to throw at the jay. I threw those sticks and the jay just sat in the tree “pewing” at me. She knew there was no way I’d actually hit her, and really that was not my goal. I just wanted to scare her so she’d fly away and quit bothering me. I think the jay thought this was all very funny, and I’m pretty sure that jay was messing with me on purpose.

Then, in my furry, it hit me. I actually have a yard again with trees and sticks and annoying birds! I was suddenly overwhelmed with happiness because I was out of that tiny apartment and once again had a little patch of nature to call my own.  There I was, barefoot and half naked in the yard, drawn out by the jay, moved in a few moments from rage to total happiness.

And the whole time that jay never did shut up.

I gave up, made my peace with ol’ jay bird, and tried to go back to bed.

So that is how the blue jay announced herself in my life as a totem. She was tired of my pining away for crows and ravens and had to find a way to say, “look stupid, I’m a perfectly good spirit animal right here in your backyard.” And to that I say, thanks blue jay. I am really happy to have you in my life.

6 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Aepril Schaile
    May 19, 2012 @ 05:04:01

    Yay for Jays! I always have a party of Jays living close to me, and yes, waking me up in the AM.


  2. Beth
    May 20, 2012 @ 22:40:51

    I love picturing you throwing sticks at the screeching jay! Good story.


  3. SpiderGoddes
    May 22, 2012 @ 00:21:25

    I, too, live in Texas and miss the Crows and Ravens. However, the grackles bring me great joy!!


  4. Trackback: Blue Things | The World According to ChinaCat

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