Tuesday, June 15, 2010

The Parakeet

I’ve never been much of a bird lover and John’s nasty little Parakeet didn’t change it one bit. The hateful little critter resented me and the feeling was mutual. She was a nasty creature, tossing bird clutter all over her cage and onto the floor and as far as I was concerned, just another stinky thing for me to clean up.

She and I had this adversarial thing going and it didn’t end until her untimely death which WAS NOT MY FAULT.

Peace would reign and she would be sitting quietly on her little stick. I would walk into the room and she would begin bouncing and shrieking and tossing bird trash around like a demented person. I would shriek back at her and throw a dish rag or a dirty sock or a wadded up newspaper at her or try to sic the cat on her but the cat was never really interested..he was into mice and God only knows we had plenty of those….but the bird would not shut up until I covered her cage with a sheet.

After supper, while everyone else, including the bird, was taking their rest and enjoying the TV and family time without me in the living room, I would spend another hour cleaning the kitchen and getting clothes ready for the next day.

The bird would be chortling gently in her cage in the corner of the living room, preening her feathers, enjoying life and my husband and children would be laughing at something really entertaining on TV or each other. It was really irritating and I was generally drowning in self pity by then anyway so the bird didn’t help at all.

No matter how quiet I tried to be, as soon as I stepped into the room the bird would start shrieking and raising cane so loud you couldn’t hear yourself think, let alone a conversation or the TV.

And we would be back at the old..bird shrieks, I throw dirty sock, bird shrieks, I throw wadded up newspaper,, bird shrieks.. but soon I would give up because John would be glaring at me..at me..like it was my fault!! And he would talk sweetly to the nasty little thing and promise all sorts of rewards which only I could possibly come up with and had no intention of providing and the bird would sit calmly and tip it’s little green head like it was really a very nice person after all and act like it was listening reverently to everything John said. Ha!!.

I have to say that I had no remorse at all later, on that final day, running three red lights to get the tiny bunch of feathers in the cigar box to the vet, no remorse at all.

And I would not even remember it except for the tears on John’s cheeks when we finally came to a stop at the vet’s door and he said in the choking voice of an almost man child trying not to cry, “It’s too late, Mom. I think it’s too late.”

And it was.

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