Something to Crow About: My 510th Post—A “Caws” to Celebrate

I forgot to check when I reached the five hundred-post milestone. That was actually several weeks ago. Whoops.

Recently, one of my grad school classmates reposted a comment on Facebook about some crows at a wildlife facility that said, “Caw,” to imitate the humans who said that to them. Someone who worked at the facility explained that the crows mocked the humans who assumed that crows only said, “Caawwww.” I was so fascinated by that remark, that I decided to search out videos about crows, especially after hearing a crow calling out as it flew by my home.

I wound up watching a twenty-two-minute TED Talk on crows and ravens by John Marzluff, a professor at the University of Washington.

I totally get that you don’t have twenty minutes to watch a video. But the first few minutes at least are worth watching, because the way a crow problem solves in a clip Marzluff shows is fascinating.

Around the fourteen-minute mark, Marzluff plays an audio clip of a raven saying his name—Edgar (ha, how fitting). But here’s a different video of a raven saying hello.

With all of this talk of corvids, of course I think of City Jackdaw, Andy’s blog, since jackdaws are in the crow family.

It’s interesting that crows and ravens are usually portrayed as sinister in literature. Think of “The Raven” by Edgar Allan Poe and the many, many fantasy novels that mention them or feature them on their covers. This post lists several. Like this novel.

Even Raven, a member of the Teen Titans superhero group, is the one with dark powers. And there’s the Crow, a dude brought back to life by an unusual crow to seek revenge.

The fact that crows eat carrion probably edged them toward the dark side in the minds of many authors. But I think they get a bad rap. I watched a video of a crow saying hello to a squirrel, which seemed kinda sweet. You can watch it here.

Maybe it’s time for crows to get a break in literature. I’d love to hear of some stories where crows or ravens did something cool. Oh wait. I know one. It’s this one.

What do you think of crows? Please comment below, especially if you know a good story about crows or ravens.

Another place for cool facts about corvids:

Crow photo from Raven from Teen Titans image from Six of Crows book cover from Goodreads.

One Post to Thank Them All

I have a lot to cover in this long-overdue post. First, a huge thank you to all who follow this blog. Awhile ago, I found the following little icon and note in my WordPress archive.


Congratulations on getting 100 total follows on El Space—The Blog of L. Marie.

I grinned from ear to ear. Thank you for reading my blog! I had little hope that anyone besides my parents, friends, and those I could bribe would actually read it. (“I will give you a set of Ginsu knives if you read it! Please!”) I am humbled by your interest, and extremely grateful.

Also, recently, I was nominated for two awards. First, the
Wonderful Team Member Award.


(Thank you, Briana Vedsted and Melissa Janda!)

Second, the Versatile Blogger Award.


(Thank you, ReGi McClain!)

The rules for Wonderful Team Member:
1. The Nominee of the Wonderful Team member Readership Award shall display the logo on his/her blog.
2. The Nominee shall nominate 14 readers they appreciate over a period of 7 days, all at once or little by little.
3. The Nominee shall name his/her Wonderful Team Member Readership Award nominees on a post or on posts during 7 days.
Over a period of 7 days (1 week), the Nominee shall nominate a number of readers that he or she appreciates—this can be done at any rate during the week. It can be all on one day or a few on one day and a few on another day, as most convenient to the Nominee.
The Nominee shall name his or her Wonderful Team Member Readership Award nominees on a post or on posts during the 7 day (1 week) period.

For Versatile Blogger:
Thank and link to the person who gave you the award.
Tell seven facts about yourself.
Pass it on to seven other bloggers.
Link to specific posts on their blogs so they’ll be notified by pingback

I’m going to make 15 facts do for all. If that’s not allowable, these awards will remain nominations then. There simply aren’t 21 or 22 interesting facts about myself.
1. When I was 13, my best friend Christine and I decided to become romance writers and make millions. We read Harlequin Romances by the boxload until we had the formula down, and also made time for bodice rippers with titles like Sweet Savage Love. But our stories turned out to be parodies. Thus, the world is spared from our purple prose.
2. I was nearly kicked out of Northwestern University, thanks to my . . . ahem . . . enthusiastic partying freshman year. (If a niece or nephew or my parents are reading this, by partying, I mean “studying in the library.”) I begged the dean to allow me the pleasure of remaining. I was slapped on probation instead, and had to take extra classes.
3. My favorite season is fall. Love the changing colors of the leaves.
4. I have a collection of stuffed sheep. *shrugs* I continually receive them as gifts, perhaps because assorted friends see the sheep and think, She must like these. I’ll give her one.
5. When I was a kid, I wrote a letter to Dr. Seuss and received an answer. Unfortunately, I can’t tell you where that letter is today!
6. I’m thinking about ice cream right now.
7. I have seen Fellowship of the Ring over 20 times.
8. The book that brought me to VCFA is Martine Leavitt’s Keturah and Lord Death. I love that book! And I had Martine as a workshop leader! Woot!
9. I used to drive an old yellow station wagon. Many people flagged me down, thinking that my car was a taxi. I wish I’d stopped and picked them up. Could’ve made some extra cash.
10. To this hour, I still want a Honda Civic Hatchback.
11. I’ve had requests for my coq au vin. Seriously. It is decent, people.
12. I used to love to skip down the street. I miss being able to do that. A grown woman skipping just nets too many strange looks.
13. I’ve ridden a horse twice. Believe me, you can tell when a horse has contempt for you.
14. I watched The Birds ages ago. Yet a flock of pigeons still freaks me out.
15. I once sat through eight solid hours of ape films (Planet of the Apes and that ilk).

The following are my nominees for the Wonderful Team Member and Versatile Blogger Awards. (Sorry. I CANNOT give one award without giving the other. So, yes, I am giving the same award to the people who nominated me.)
ReGi McClain
Melanie Fishbane
Ionia Martin
Linda Taylor
Phillip McCollum
Lyn Miller-Lachmann
Kate of Disregard the Prologue
Kristen Mazzola
L. A. Byrne
Naomi of Bmore Energy
William Louison
White Raven
Dreamland’s Insurgents
Laura Sibson
Shawna Kastin
Sharon Van Zandt
Ingrid Sundberg
Laurie Morrison
Andy of City Jackdaw
Charlotte Carrendar
Briana Vedsted
Melissa Janda
Amber Skye Forbes
Charles of Legends of Windemere
Shane of Book Reviews and Poetry
Patty of Petite Magique
Jen Bailey
Emily of A Keyboard and an Open Mind
K. L. Schwengel
T. K. Morin
Temitoria of Temitoria’s Wit
Shannon A. Thompson

This list does not contain all of the bloggers I would like to nominate. Some of the others wish to remain award free. I respect that. None of my nominees is obligated to accept, especially those who have received both of these awards already. (And quite frankly, some of you might curse me for nominating you yet again—a risk I’m willing to take. :-)) Thank you all for being you.