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2001-05-01.10:39 a.m.

spanish, parrots, misc etc

Yesterday we saw our first duckling of the year. A fluffy dark yellow marshmallow peep of a baby bird struggling to keep up with momma.

Mrs. Momma Duck stopped along the edge of the canal across from our back door and let the single tag along rest.

The little guy has to be at least a week early.

The two swans are still at the nest. The female is on the nest as usual and I’ve seen the male sticking much closer as of late. It’s either more traffic or coincidence.

I’d be willing to wager that if by next week you find a tree in Providence without buds swelling to the point of bursting, that tree is dead.

Yes, it’s spring and it’s at least 75 out today.

Hey, I just heard from Cristin that she really likes the CD I produced for her reading. I think there’s a few things left to tweak, but I hope I’m just being picky. God I’m neurotic about this.

Tonight Jen and I are probably going to check out a health club. I just want to start playing racquetball again. Jen wants to swim. I wonder if we’ll keep it up. Somehow I don't think so. That reminds me, I have to get my racquet restrung.

Hablo español, o debo yo digo que hablaba español. Sobre todo ahora recuerdo solamente cómo jurar, pero con un diccionario puedo todavía calcular fuera de todos lo que realmente necesito. Palabras por ejemplo mierda, conyo, pendejo, cabron…

Ok, that’s too hard to keep up.

When I went to Bryant College, because I didn’t pledge a fraternity, I had to find a place to live and subsequently people to live with. Through the school I hooked up with Jose, Hector, Herman, Francisco, Neil, Josh and some other guy.

The other guy I’m trying to remember is the opera listening, opera singing, ‘different’ roommate. Anyone out there remember his name?

Anyway, 5 of the guys were from Puerto Rico, Neil was from Jamaica, and Josh was a Bruce Springsteen listening Jew from New York.

Yes, I was the token white boy.

We had a lot of fun living together, and in the process I learned a lot of Spanish. More than any high school course ever taught me. I loved living with those guys.

That’s when I got my first bird. Don Qu, is a Puerto Rican rum and consequently the name of my first timneh grey. A timneh that looks like a small african grey parrot, but with maroon tail feathers and a beak that is often tan instead of jet black.

Don was a wild caught bird, and had I know what I’ve learned about birds over the years, I would never have bought him.

He was happy enough, but being wild caught, it took so long for him to even let me pet him or clip his flight feathers without gouging me.

It was spring and it had been a while since I last clipped his wings. My ex girl friend had left our upstairs porch window open. Someone came in, someone left the door open, the bird flew off his cage, someone didn’t close the door fast enough, the bird found the open upstairs window, the bird flew out and was never seen again.

Sad and horrible. I still feel guilt over it. Basically I took a bird from the wild, took it from the vast expanses it was used to and put it in a cage. Then after years in the cage, I let it go free into New England.

I find it hard to believe he could have survived. Perhaps if he was found by someone, but he hardly trusted Michelle and it took us years to get him to that point.

During the madness when he first flew out the window, I ran down stairs and managed to put my arm through a storm window on a storm door. 20 Stitches in the arm and wrist later and still no one had seen the bird.

I remember the feeling: Knowing what a horrible thing has just happened and it being all your own fault.

Sometimes I look at the scars on my body and remember the sad moments they were produced from. The scar from that window on my arm has faded, but that on my wrist remains.

We eventually got another Timneh, Minnie – a sweet loving bird. She was wild too and eventually she went to a breeder along with Sunny – my Sun Conyer. At one time I had Minnie, Sunny, two love birds and a cockatiel. Quite the menagerie. Giving up Sunny and Minne was really hard, but with work and my life at that time, I was just ignoring them. Birds, especially large birds, are a mature person’s pet. They take more of a commitment than even a dog in some ways. I just wish I knew that before I started keeping birds as pets.


Pets. So far in my life I have had the following pets in no particular order.

°Fish. 10 gal tank, 30 gal tank, 90 gal tank (mostly goldfish, apart from the monster sucker fish and the 18 inch African Ciclid)
°Koi in a Koi pond. 5,000 gallons that I made with a shovel, pick axe and sweat
°Hamsters (who had lots of babies)
°Cats (Snowy, Sugar, Spice, Pookie, Taylor)
°a Dog (Bean)
°2 Timney Grey’s (Don and Minnie)
°1 Sun Conyer (Sunny)
°2 love birds (lurch and peter)
°a cockatiel (bitchy)
°a snake (coral something)
°2 hedgehogs (pork and pine)
°white rats (gimpy and peanut)

& I bet I’m forgetting something.

For a while I had all the birds, three fish tanks, hedgehogs, plants, bonsai, and a koi pond outside. Total madness. I don’t know how I used to do it all.

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Since Feb 2001

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