For the Birds Radio Program: Marry Someone Like a Blue Jay

Original Air Date: Jan. 20, 1999 (estimated date)

Blue Jays have a lot to recommend themselves as far as being the ideal mate.

Duration: 3′48″


A lot of people have been asking why this month should be designated as National Blue Jay Awareness Month. After all, Blue Jay populations are increasing, they don’t depend on endangered plants or habitats for survival, and they can be pretty obnoxious when it comes right down to it. So why out of all the birds in the Northland would I single out jays?

To tell the truth, I’m not exactly sure. All I know is that Blue Jays are my favorite bird, and they deserve some recognition at least once in a Blue Moon. I love how they can be as perky and happy as Bill Clinton when he’ s at his best, and yet are as solid and committed and true to their mates as Al Gore. I figure most of the unhappiness in the world could be prevented if everyone would follow one simple precept: marry someone like a Blue Jay. Let me explain.

Some people yearn for the unattainable-they want a Pileated Woodpecker type person to spend their days with. Now Pileateds are charming, magnetic, vital creatures- they’ re the Harrison Fords and Julia Roberts of the bird world, but take it from me, you can’t get close to a movie star, and you can ‘ t get close to a Pileated Woodpecker, They’re romantic, but elusive.

Some people get turned on by high energy and effusiveness. They pick House Wren-types. But every House Wren has a wandering eye. Before one batch of young are even out of the nest, both of the parents are already casting lustful eyes upon the neighbors.

Some people are drawn to the gentle manner and soft dreaminess of a nighthawk-type person. That kind of love can be powerful and strong, but eventually every nighthawk gets wanderlust and flies half-way around the world, leaving you to face the winter alone. Keep away from fair­ weather friends.

Some people choose the opposite-a mate to help them weather the hard times. It’s true that a Redpoll or Pine Grosbeak-type will warm your hear on a cold winter night. But this type thrives ONLY in adversity. As soon as easy times come along-summer days when you want to doze in a sun-dappled hammock with your loved one at your side, that redpoll will be warming the heart of some other lonely person up beyond the Arctic Circle.

Some people are drawn to the steady reliability and predictability of a Bald Eagle, never realizing that that eagle is in love with home and hearth, not you. Eagles only stay mated for life because they can ‘ t work out a property settlement-both of them are far more devoted to their nest than to each other.

No, when you’re looking for a husband or a wife, pick a Blue Jay-someone who believes in monogamy and is strong enough to stick it out through hard times, yet easy-going enough to relax and have fun during pleasant times. Pick someone loyal, who’ ll be happy to be with you whether you live in one place year-round or feel like escaping south during the worst of winter. You want someone whose eating habits you can live with whether you’re a vegetarian, a red­ meat eater, or somewhere in between. Pick someone intelligent enough to be interesting without being superior or fussy. Someone comfortable in both the city and the country, street-smart without being cynical, homey without being boring. Most of all, if you’re looking for true happiness, you need someone with a sense of humor. Yes, if you’re looking for a mate who can keep you interested and in love for a lifetime, marry someone with the qualities of a Blue Jay.