parus (titmouse) atricapillus (from atri, black and capillus, crown)
Saturday, June 30, 1979 — 1:30 p.m.
Des Plaines, Illinois — home
During the evening before this sighting, Sally and I went to see Moonraker. It was her first James Bond movie, and she was somewhat taken aback by his attitude toward women. We got in a silly fight, then made up and — just for fun, got engaged. I asked her at 1:30 a. m. on June 30, 1979. We were in my house at the time.
Exactly 12 hours after Sally said yes, we were looking out the window of my bedroom into the backyard and saw two Black-capped Chickadees foraging in the row of bushes by the shed. This came as something of a surprise to me. I never knew you could see chickadees by my house. A few years later, a pair actually nested in a bird house hanging off the roof of this same shed.
One rather amusing anecdote. We told my parents in the morning, and asked them not to tell anyone. Before the morning was over, we heard my Dad telling somebody about it on the phone. That afternoon, he called us into his study (where he did counseling) and introduced us to another couple who “had just gotten engaged.” Oh, well.