Why does the little wren sing to beat the band? To say “Thank you”?

Our birds, ourselves

Twitty of Como: “In Brainerd a week ago, I sat at my sister’s dining-room table drinking coffee and chatting. As we chatted, I watched a wren coming and going from a birdhouse across the yard. A day or two later, she excitedly texted news that he’d selected the house for his nest.


“For years, I had wrens nesting in a house I’d hung from a pine bough in my back yard. I love their songs. Two or three years ago, that branch died, and I took the birdhouse down before cutting off the limb. I set it on the deck railing of my garden shed and sorta forgot about it, and no birds used it.

“This morning, after weeding in the yard for several hours, I sat on the shed’s porch to cool off a bit and enjoy back-yard sights. Two robins were trying to coax their last fledgling out of the nest and were tempting him with bits of worms they were digging up — and I laughed at their efforts. He was stubborn!

“All of a sudden, the wren I’d been subconsciously hearing in the background came in and alighted atop my unused old birdhouse — only four feet from me! He knew I was there. He went in and out a few times, each time returning to its roof, where he set about lecturing me in no uncertain terms: He wanted that house — but NOT where it sat! He was a mighty fine singer, so as soon as he flew to a near pine, I got up and cleaned out that birdhouse. Then I got out my ladder and hung the house in a pine, near where it’d hung for many years. That was around noon, and I went in for lunch then.

“It’s 4 p.m. now, and I’m back sitting on the porch of my shed, watching that little wren proudly build his nest inside that house! Every time he comes out, he moves to a nearby limb and sings to beat the band!

“While I was gone, Mom and Pop Robin finally got their last fledgling out of the nest — so I’ve had two bird successes in the back yard today! It’s been a good day.”

Our flora, ourselves

Mounds View Swede writes again: “I saw these blooming in the back yard and went to take a closer look. They are chive blossoms. When I first saw this one, I assumed these were just spikes of some sort.


“But another plant showed me they were blossoms getting ready to open. I saw insects visiting them and wondered why. Now I understood.

“Another blossom caught my eye. This looks pretty complex, and it belongs to a hosta called Empress Wu, one of the largest varieties of hostas.

“The blossom is 52 inches off the ground. This is its third season in my yard, and it seems to like it here. This was taken before the hailstorm, so the leaves in this photo have no holes in them.”


Dumb Customer Jokes

Rusty of St. Paul reports: “I recently ordered lunch at a fast-food place where the food is made to order (so it is not exactly fast), and I was given number 59.

“The order taker didn’t know that I recently turned 60 years of age.

“When my order was up, the young gal approached me and said: ‘Fifty-nine.’

“And I said: ‘Well, close, but actually I just turned 60. Now please don’t try to guess my weight.’

“She gave me a look like ‘Run away!'”

A joke for today (and many yesterdays) (responsorial)

Monday’s Bulletin Board concluded with this report from The Retired Pedagogue of Arden Hills reports: “From ‘THE DAILY EXTRA’ on the back of my Garfield Page-a-day calendar:

“‘Groaners: World’s Best Bad Jokes and Puns.

“‘A man in a fancy restaurant noticed the gorgeous woman sitting at the next table. Suddenly, she sneezed, causing her glass eye to pop out and fly toward him. The man caught it in mid-air.

“‘”I’m so sorry,” the woman said as she popped her eye back in. “Let me buy you dinner.”

“‘After charming dinner conversation, the woman offered to drive the man home.

“‘The man was flattered. “You’re the perfect woman. Are you this nice to every guy you meet?”

“‘”No,” she responded. “You just happened to catch my eye.”‘”

We presently heard from Semi-Legend: “It was also ‘THE DAILY EXTRA’ on the back of my Pearls Before Swine Page-a-day calendar.

“And it was just as bad there.”

A joke for today
And Many, Many Yesterdays Division

Red’s Offspring, north of St. Paul: “Subject: Turning on the light.

“This comes from Ed, my youngest daughter’s boyfriend:

“How many psychologists does it take to change a lightbulb?

“First, the lightbulb has to want to change.”

Joy of Juxtaposition
And: What’s in a name?

Donald: “Subject: Gimme an ‘E,’ Gimme an ‘S,’ but Gimme a ‘W’!

“The big news in the Sports section of Monday’s Pioneer Press was the victory by Brooks Koepka in the U.S. Open.

“But as I turned to Page 5B to read the continuation of the front-page story, I came across this headline under ‘Golf’ in the ’Sports briefing’ section: ‘Henderson wins Meijer Classic.’ That held no significance for me, but the beginning of the piece revealed an unusual coincidence: ‘Brooke Henderson made it a special Father’s Day.

“‘With father and coach Dave Henderson watching, the 19-year-old Canadian won the Meijer LPGA Classic for her fourth LPGA Tour title. . . .’

“For ‘Brooks’ and ‘Brooke,’ it was quite a day.”

Another place where close counts

Jim Shumaker of New Richmond, Wisconsin: “Blue Angels during a couple of close passes at the Duluth Air Show! They are the best!”



Our community of (mostly) strangers

Gma Tom: “I’m sure this isn’t the first time BB has acted to connect contributors who trade (info, supplies, know-how, intelligence, etc.) and who then form a mutually beneficial coalition. [Bulletin Board says: No, it is not the first time; it’s far from the first time!]

“Thank you for connecting me with OTD from NSP, who had an abundant supply of pantyhose which she no longer could use. And since I use them for stuffing Rockford sock-monkey dolls, I had a use for the hose. We were able to meet, have lunch and transfer the large supply of hose from her car to mine. I now have enough hose to stuff more monkeys than I will ever have time to make. But I will have lots of fun trying.

“Thank you again, BB, for connecting this community of strangers, who then become not so strange.”

Our pests, ourselves

From our Official Zucchini Enemy, Farmer Jeff: “Just reporting in from the front lines of the Zucchini Wars of Summer 2017 — with fortunately nothing to report on the zucchini front. Still, one must never let one’s guard down.

“Nevertheless, for the first time on Rainbow Farm, cute little furry rabbits have turned into tomato-plant-eating Bastard Bunnies (BB’s) this year. We have replanted FOUR times. We fell for the marigold myth, but the BB’s just hop around the flowers and eat the plants. I will acknowledge that the tomato patch certainly looks prettier with all the marigolds scattered amidst the chewed-up remains of tomato plants! We surrounded the tomato patch in plastic fencing, but the BB’s chewed right through it and ate the plants. I suppose metal chicken-wire fencing might be more effective, but what a hassle. We’ve sprinkled blood meal, to no avail. We’re about to try spraying some sort of repelling stinky stuff around the garden, but I have my doubts.

“As a nature-loving bunny-hugger, I refuse to turn the cute little BB’s into rabbit stew. I’d be grateful if others had any effective ideas.

“In the meantime, we’ll keep our eyes out for unexpected zucchini blasters.”

Fun facts to know and tell

Fantomas: “Subject: When is an initialism an acronym?

“BB [Bulletin Board notes: That’s BB as in Bulletin Board, not BB as in Bastard Bunny] recently explained the difference between an initialism (like ECRWSS) and an acronym (like scuba or radar).

“I was reminded that, while in English CIA is an initialism for Central Intelligence Agency, in Italian it is an acronym: The CIA is called ‘la Cia,’ with ‘Cia’ being pronounced as we pronounce ‘Chia’ in ‘Chia Pets.’ Makes one wonder what the otherwise-inexplicable infiltration of Chia Pets into American households was intended to accomplish. . . .’


Band Name of the Day: Bastard Bunnies and the Stinky Stuff

Website of the Day, from Grandpa John in the Tar Heel State: 101 Canonical Tweets (our favorites: Nos. 18, 61 and 69)






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