The second hint was a link to a recording of the subject species call, and much like down in Florida where my friends at Halifax River Audubon will be Christmas Bird Counting tomorrow, where the American Crow and Fish Crow overlap, voice is the only reliable clue for identifying Fish. That same thing, voice, is how you decide if you are looking at an American or last week's bird, Northwestern Crow (Corvus caurinus) where they overlap. (I suppose, if they were perched side-by-side, you could use size as a clue as the Northwestern is smaller, but that is unlikely to happen very often - if at all.)
Hopefully this week's bird will be a little easier. They breed in the north, but have been reported in winter in most - if not all - of the lower 48 states, though you would more likely see them in a coastal region. Extra credit if you know the old name.
As always, good luck and great birding (next week will be the first quiz of 2009!). I've got to go dig out from the last 36 hours of snow . . .