“Undoctored” Photograph by D. Plasman

Dear Robin:

Your persistent nest-building activity on our front porch has not escaped my notice.

Please know that I am a nature-loving, animal-caring, environment-protecting, warm-hearted liberal. My God, I still cannot come to terms that someone the likes of Donald Trump occupies the White House!

That said, I need to express my objection to your insistence on constructing a nest with your partner at the current location. In hopes of discouraging you, every day (at times twice a day!) I sweep away the twigs and straw and string that you’ve deposited at the building site. Alas! You don’t seem to get the message!

I’ve even posted written notes, some admittedly harsh: “Please cease and desist from this activity immediately!” You seem neither to notice nor to care. What’s up with that?

Jesus once said, “Consider the lilies of the field.” I say, “Consider all the trees we’ve planted on this once barren property! River Birches. Quaking Aspens. Corkscrew Willows. Japanese Maples. Even a sturdy Basswood growing straight and tall in the parkway.” Why, I wonder, this porch, on top of this light fixture? In another week, you’ll find plenty of shade in one of our trees!

Please reconsider your home site. I’m running out of options. If my latest petition fails to move you, give some thought to our mail carrier who is reaching the point of exasperation!


Dan at 715 Paris Ave


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  1. Arnie Smithalexande April 12, 2017 at 3:41 pm #

    Dan I have retired from Grand Valley, and I am not on the site as frequently as a been in the past. Please eliminate the GVSU address and use the new one which is my personal one. I do enjoy your post, and I still miss you at the church. As for the bird. It will will only be there for short time, get a temporary mailbox for the mailman, I have five birdfeeders I wish I had your problem. I know my dog is a deterrent.. One can’t have everything. Please respond and let me know if you received this email in your sending your future posts to the email address above.
    Regards Arnie.
    “YOu Create Your Reality with Your Intentions.”

    • Daniel Plasman April 12, 2017 at 4:31 pm #

      Arnie, you are wonderfully brilliant. A temporary mailbox, of course!!

  2. Mary Kansfield April 12, 2017 at 4:01 pm #

    “I shall do my very best. However, since you have not invited me to build my nest inside your house, I figure this is the next best thing. I love you guys.”

    • Daniel Plasman April 12, 2017 at 4:32 pm #

      Our love to the Kansfield household.

  3. Ana April 12, 2017 at 8:09 pm #

    Very funny Dan but you might as well make peace with the robins because they’re not going anywhere. Squatters rights! Don’t mess with mother nature!

  4. Donald Newsom April 12, 2017 at 8:52 pm #

    Elevated from the ground? Check. Sheltered from the wind? Check. Sheltered from the rain? Check. Warm on top of the porch light? Check. Squirrel-proof? Check. Messy down below? That’s called living in the wild. What more could a robin ask for?

    • Daniel Plasman April 12, 2017 at 9:53 pm #

      Oh dear, now I feel terrible.

      • Ana April 12, 2017 at 10:14 pm #

        No need to feel bad. Chalk it up as a learning experience. I would suggest you check with your birding friends first before considering another eviction. And P.S. don’t be surprised if the same birds return next year.

    • Daniel Plasman April 13, 2017 at 3:40 pm #

      OK, Dr. Don, you’ve convinced me. I will remove the current eviction notice. Thinking of you during this Holy Week. Grace and Peace!

  5. Marge April 13, 2017 at 8:42 am #

    The robin’s nest we had was in an upper window ledge on the west side of our house. Fortunately it wasn’t causing any problems. The joy we received was when the baby robins hatched. With the aid of a chair, our children had daily peeking sessions to how the babies were doing. Alas, the day came when all were gone. The chair removed. Another of God’s marvelous creation event was over. Sigh… Open my eyes and heart to see more of God’s creative moments.

    • Daniel Plasman April 13, 2017 at 3:36 pm #

      Love that story, Marge. I also fondly remember a squirrel that made a cozy home in a certain piano. Different outcome, as I recall. 🐿

  6. Roberta April 13, 2017 at 11:41 am #


    I thought you would have more patience than that. Think of the poor thing and how we humans have made so difficult for that bird that she is totally confused about what she should do!!!! I’m begining to feel the same!!!!

    • Daniel Plasman April 13, 2017 at 3:31 pm #

      Roberta, be assured my attitude is improving. Thanks for the nudge.

    • Anonymous April 14, 2017 at 8:31 am #

      Dan trade places. you find yourself in an your environment and strange creatures you cannot communicate share the same space. You found a wonderful temporary space to raise your family and these strange because they are stronger than you destroy your temporary home. because is inconvenient for them. not harmful, not destructive, not dangerous, just inconvenient. I wonder how would you feel .Smile smile smile. I don’t know how to add a 🙂 otherwise I would. I think you know the answer. Arnie

      • Daniel Plasman April 15, 2017 at 6:31 am #

        I hear you! I hear you! Thanks

  7. Kendra M. April 13, 2017 at 7:10 pm #