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I may fall into that category of "passionate" birder.  I know I am compulsive and probably have AADD.  I 
drive an SUV and I travel to see birds (4-year old vehicle with more than 100,000 miles on the 
odometer).  Thus, I feel qualified to speak for this nefarious segment of the birding community.

Yup, I burn gas.  Sometimes I drive alone; sometimes I have a full vehicle.  Yesterday, in south Texas I 
drove a 95-mile round trip.  There were 5 people in the car.

I do not smoke so I don't pollute the atmosphere in that way, nor add to global warming by heating the 
air one cigarette at a time.

I do not drink alcohol, so I do not contribute to the misuse of food agricultural land by consuming 
drinks that use hops or grapes grown on our soil.

I do not buy multiple pairs of shoes, don't discard and replace clothing at every whimsical change of 
"fashion."  I recycle and have always been a proponent of zero population growth. 

It is really unfortunate that our misguided legislature and boy-governor have made it mandatory to use 
only ethanol gasoline--a truly energy inefficient concoction that takes lots of land out of production for 
food.  This is now an additional reason to bird beyond my beloved home state.

I am aging.  Many of my friends are unable to walk very far and bicycling is out of the question.  It gives 
me great pleasure to accompany them on birding trips.  We share good bird sightings and share the 
many joys of long-standing comraderie enhanced by the euphoria of gorgeous winged creatures.

If this all sounds self-righteous, that's because it was intended as such.  As Bobbie Burns said, " Ah, to 
see ourselves as others see us."

It is great to encourage permutations of birding activity; but let us not impugne others for not birding 
the same way.

Go bird.  Walk, bike, drive.  Just don't promote provincialism under the guise of environmental 
stewardship.

Bodacious birding to y'all.

Edge Wade
Brownsville, TX
edgew@mchsi

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