Wednesday, August 13, 2008

An Introduction to Stella

I wasn't sure what I was going to write about tonight but I just looked to my left and saw this:
This is Stella. She's a Meyer's parrot, 17 years old and was named after my grandmother on my mother's side. I also liked this name because I knew I would be yelling her name a lot (because parrots can be very stubborn and naughty) and the name Stella is a theatrical classic for yelling long distances.  I don't know what it is about me but I am very drawn to willful, naughty animals. I like willful, somewhat naughty kids too as long as they have a sense of humor and recognize that they are being naughty when they really shouldn't be. I'm also drawn to stories about naughty kids....such as "The Liar's Club,"  "The Secret Life of Bees" and "The Little Friend." Those are just three novels I could think of offhand but I am sure there are others (oh those Bronte girls could come up with some good independent thinkers). But Stella is just a little bit beyond naughty. Michael calls her the BB Bird because she's such a bad, bad bird. She can be very moody and when this picture was taken, she was being pretty moody.

Stella was mad because Babe the cockatiel (who is staying with us temporarily) got to come out and play before she did so she pulled Babe's night cover off and hid in this bowl to give me a good staredown....Like I said, bad. But when she's sweet, she is the best little friend ever. I think her normal state of mind is naughty though.

Stella has many talents. She can imitate every door and cabinet door in the house, opening and closing, fast and slow, winter sounds (from lack of humidity) and summer. When you open a cabinet door, she will start the appropriate sound before the door is opened (when you live with birds, you get used to hearing normal household noises duplicated in other rooms at the same time). She is also very good at imitating my former neighbor's screen door which he got a kick out of because every time he went in or out, he got to hear that sound coming from another yard. My neighbor on the other side was not so fond of Stella though. One time she was in the bathtub, heard her security alarm go off, she jumped out of the tub to see who broke into her house....nobody. She got back into the tub, same thing happened, the sound announcing that a door had been opened but nobody was there. The third time... she realized it was "that bird." You see, my neighbor and I both have the same security alarm system and until then, we did not realize just how good Stella was at imitating it. 

Stella also knows where the keypad is to activate the alarm. She also figured out a way to raise the plastic protective door to reach the emergency police button. Try explaining that when your security alarm system's support calls to verify a break-in. Like I said, baaaaad.

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