“In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” These were the immortal words of Benjamin Franklin, a man as brilliant as they come. Yet this keen observer of the natural world ignored the certainties all around him. The rising of the sun in the east and its setting in the west is as certain as the waning and waxing of the moon. The massive migrations of millions of species driven by the annual movement of the Earth around that selfsame sun is certain. Gravity, entropy, even the tendency of small pieces of metal to attract lightning, particularly when attached to high-flying kites…all these can be counted on by those who understand such forces. It’s just that they don’t suck as hard as death and taxes.

We all have, or at least will have, painful insights into death. Most of us will escape this mortal coil with a more passing knowledge of taxes. However, some formidable souls dare to plumb the stygian mysteries of tax laws and loopholes. Kay Bell, a writer, editor, birder, and blogger out of Austin, Texas, actually seems to enjoy talking taxes. Read her blog, Don’t Mess With Taxes, surely one of the most cleverly named sites around, and you may come to fear taxes slightly less than its partner in inevitability. So be sure to browse around after you enjoy Kay’s presentation of I and the Bird #33.

Are you the type of intrepid naturalist willing to brave all manner of death and taxes to enjoy a bit of bird spotting? Do you blog about your daring adventures? If you haven’t shared your writing with the thrill-hungry audience of I and the Bird, you should really start now. Send a link to your best post about birding or wild birds along with a brief summary to me or our next wonderful host, Pam (pshack AT email DOT arizona DOT edu) of Tortoise Trail. Our next edition is scheduled for Thursday, October 12, so get in touch with one of us by Tuesday, October 10.

Written by Mike
Mike is a leading authority in the field of standardized test preparation, but he's also a traveler who fully expects to see every bird in the world. Besides founding 10,000 Birds in 2003, Mike has also created a number of other entertaining but now extirpated nature blog resources, particularly the Nature Blog Network and I and the Bird.