When I take pictures of our avian cousins, I’m usually attracted to birds that are interesting in some way. Cute baby geese. Colorful hummingbirds. A lovely egret. A magnificent heron. But what about the blue-collar birds? It’s not their fault that they’re boring. Don’t they deserve pictures too?

You bet. And what’s more ordinary than a finch? So I undertook to photograph one. But precisely because they’re so ordinary, I wanted an extra nice photo and eventually I got this one. And while it’s a nice picture, I have to say that this is one tubby little finch, isn’t it? Irvine must be bursting at the seams with delicious worms. Or whatever it is that finches eat.

UPDATE: Apparently this is a song sparrow, not a finch. How about that? And judging from a few pictures, song sparrows all tend toward the chubby side. This fellow, it turns out, is pretty ordinary.

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THE TRUTH...

is the first thing despots go after. An unwavering commitment to it is probably what draws you to Mother Jones' journalism. And as we're seeing in the US and the world around, authoritarians seek to poison the discourse and the way we relate to each other because they can't stand people coming together around a shared sense of the truth—it's a huge threat to them.

Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

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