(Note to Her Royal Highness – this is where the copy for the book itself will go)
In Arthur Scott Bailey’s world, all the animals and birds were anthropomorphized (sp.).
The illustrations in the books show such creatures adorned in waistcoats, top-hats, bonnets, and modest dresses. Some even wear monocules. All good, and completely snazzy. (The Droning Voice secretly wishes men would readopt such timeless fashion today, eschewing such fads as baggy pants, skinny jeans, and anything displaying butt crack.)
In spite of this, Mr. Bailey truly does an excellent job of describing the habits and habitats of each creature featured, along with accepted (for the time) written renditions of bird songs. Today, of course, you can find recordings of bird songs from esteemed online sources such as ebird.com. You can quickly click to their website, listen to a recording of a Red-winged Blackbird, then hasten back to The Droning Voice to complain that a Red-Winged Blackbird sounds nothing like what Mr. Bailey wrote. The Droning Voice encourages you to write what YOU think a Red-Winged Blackbird sounds like, based on the recordings published by Cornell University. Birders everywhere will rejoice. Also, The Droning Voice disputes the notion that crows cannot sing. To another crow, the sounds rendered are beautiful, and quite sexy, even if to the unenlightened ear they sound like an exhausted cheerleader who has been chain-smoking unfiltered cigarettes.
These books were written before the passage of The Songbird Protection Act, and may have descriptions of birds being afraid of being killed for sport, or because of crop protection (in the case of farmers). Today, the killing of any songbird is a crime punishable by fines and/or imprisonment. The Droning Voice dearly hopes that the listener understands The Droning Voice does not endorse the killing of any creature for any reason.
Except mosquitoes. She hates mosquitoes.
And remember, in the 1920s, “gay” meant cheerful and happy, and was not a label attached to any bird or animal to describe their sexual identity. Calm down. Rest easy. And allow The Droning Voice to lull you, or your child, to dreamland with tales of critters with stilted personalities. Just like many people in your social circles. Z-z-z-z-z…
Here is a sample of The Tale of Bobby Bobolink:
This is a short example of The Droning Voice. Subscribers can access the full-length version and really put themselves to sleep. Here is how to subscribe.