Thursday, February 16, 2012

Thursday, 2/16

Stuart is trying to wean himself off the blogs. He has a list of sixty regulars he checks every day. And that sixty generally leads to at least sixty more. Sidebar distractions, friends, relatives and co-hobbyists with his original group.

Stuart doesn't know these people, the bloggers. He came across them by accident when he started his own little blog three years ago. Stuart's thing is birding. Or it used to be before his thing (increasingly) became keeping up with sixty or more blogs every day.

Stuart lives in coastal Texas on the Gulf of Mexico, a birder's paradise. He moved here six years ago after his wife left him. Born and bred in Minneapolis, he needed something different. Warm winters and gulf waters seemed at the time to fit the bill. Now he's not so sure.

Despite everything, Stuart is drop-dead handsome. Women come easily to him, which turned out to be a problem for his wife. He loved his wife, still does, but she could never quite believe that. Or perhaps she couldn't make it matter to her. Geek love. He never cheated on her, wouldn't know how to begin. He's a nerd's nerd with moviestar good looks. His wife was geeky and humorless as well. Minus the looks. "Watcha doing with her?" all the gorgeous women used to whisper to him. In restaurants, the mall, Christ even in church. His wife must have wondered this too. She couldn't take the pressure. Borderline Aspergers, she was. She didn't have too much trouble making the break.

Stuart lacks charisma, but his heart nonetheless was broken. Stuart has a good heart. This is becoming the bane of his existence. It doesn't go with his face.

He started blogging a couple of years after he started birding, a natural extension of his morning walk. He takes exquisite photographs of migrating species seldom seen in most part's of the birders' universe and posts them on is site. "Birds Here" he calls it. He was surprised by the attention the photographs received, not quite comprehending the serendipity of his current location and new hobby. He certainly hadn't moved here for the birds. Hadn't even considered it.

None of his blogging "friends" know what Stuart looks like. He posts no photographs of himself. He gets enough attention as it is on his birdwalks. Women with binoculars meander in droves along his more frequent routes. He has taken to alternating trails and times to throw them off, but they're still out there. Have they nothing better to do?

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