On Wednesday, I gave my review of the sensational How To Be A (Bad) Birdwatcher by Simon Barnes. This book is a fantastic introduction to the pleasures of birdwatching. It eloquently enumerates the many benefits of birding, from heightened awareness of place and time to improved relationships with one’s parents to a highly addictive sense of bliss. In fact, I defy anyone to read it through and not take up birdwatching, either good or bad. So, the question you have to ask yourself is, “Do I want to be a birdwatcher?”
If the answer is yes, then I’ve got an offer for you.
Those splendid humanitarians over at Pantheon Books sent me a couple of extra books for just such an eventuality. See, I know that, even though 10,000 Birds is ostensibly a birding blog, many of our readers aren’t birdwatchers. Some come for the commentary or politics or adorable pictures of Mason. Others come because they’re right on the brink; they like nature alright, maybe feel an unquantifiable affinity for avifauna, but haven’t yet found their inner birders.
That’s right — I’m talking to you.
If you want to become a birdwatcher but don’t know how to get there, here is your chance. I have two copies of How To Be A (Bad) Birdwatcher that I will give for FREE to the two people who can make the best case for getting them. I’ll even throw in the shipping. That’s how much I believe in the transformational power of this book. Simply write about why you want to be a birdwatcher or at least a better one. Any length will do, as will any medium, as long as it can be e-mailed. Send it to me and Sara and I will decide which entreaties are most persuasive. We may enlist some of our allies to help with the decision making or even open the voting up to our readers. We reserve the right to post any submissions to this site.
This isn’t a sweepstakes or contest. This offer has no cash-value, etc. etc. Keep the lawyers out of this unless they want to become birdwatchers too. This is simply a situation in which I have some books and want to give them to those who will get the most out of them.
The deadline for entries is Friday, July 29. I expect to announce the results on Tuesday, August 2.
Birding is an incredibly enjoyable pastime, a pleasure that grows deeper and more sustaining as time goes on. Is there room in your life for this kind of satisfaction? If so, let me know. I have a book that can help you find it.