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The Dinosaur Who Loved Me

In the past couple of weeks, I have learned something very cool, interesting, and sometimes irritating about Senegal Parrots: it's difficult to earn their trust, when they are adults and see you as an outsider, as I was and still am to a great degree. But... Once they decide you're kosher, they do a complete 180.

This is the case with Pink, named after the band Pink Floyd, but is more responsive to 'Pinky' and 'Pink-a-Poo'. I've had more exposure to Pinky because he doesn't live in the bird room since the others bully him, and he has this tendency to try to fly into my room to get to Syd and Nancy, who are his parents. No, he's not visiting affectionately. He's manifesting the tenets of "trickle down economics," which dictates that shit rolls downhill. Since Syd and Nancy are enclosed, he struts around on the top of their cage, pretending to be a gangsta. He's lost a toe or two for his trouble, and that's why I have to get him out of the room as soon as humanly possible. I have to use a fully extended Professor Fluff'n Dust, as seen in this picture, except it's a vibrant green, same as Pinky. I'm not sure if he sees the thing as a rival bird, or just something that's pissing him off because it's in his face, but Pinky can't resist jumping on the duster and showing it who's boss. I then have to keep the duster close to the floor and rush him out of the room before he decides he wants to fly back to Syd and Nancy and pretend he's a badass. Ain't nobody got time for that! Once when I was doing this, the bird got a wild hair and decided to fly into the closet, landing about two feet away from Smidgen, who looked up from her half nap, and essentially said "what-the-fuck-ever." It became a sort of game, at least in Pinky's opinion. So we've been dancing this particular two-step for about a year and a half now.

In true aspiring vulgarian fashion, I'd swear like a peg-legged pirate every time he outsmarted me to get into the room. There were times the little bastard would actually laugh. I think Pinky and Butter are the only two who do this, although I may be wrong. So, the more I cursed at him, the more he'd talk back. We had an ongoing dialogue about how he pissed me off by flying into the room, and I'd piss him off by wielding the Duster of Dread.

But that hasn't been our entire relationship. I was actually on the road to establishing a friendly relationship with him, until I made myself a tinfoil hat for shits and giggles one day. The first time Pinky landed on my shoulder to mooch some of my popsicle, he looked up to find the shiny menace on my head, and immediately started backing up, inching down my upper arm, and growling. Yes, growling. Senegals growl at things that alarm them. For quite some time after that, Pinky kept his distance, despite my overtures for friendship.

But, a couple of weeks ago, it's like a switch was flicked in Pinky's brain (hahahaha! Pinky and the Brain!), and he decided that I was a member of his family and that he was rather fond of me. That's an understatement, really. As I said, Senegals are hard to seduce, but once they've been won over, they fucking own you. I don't go out of the room now without Pinky landing on my shoulder and making what I call a laser weapon noise in my ear, although it's much softer than the laser guns you hear in movies. It's like a pew pew pew pew pew sound. Not only that, but if he thinks he's not getting the attention to which he's entitled, he starts pinching my earlobe and pulling my hair. I always give him a couple of snow peas when I feed Syd and Nancy, and he's taken a shine to eating them either on my wrist or my shoulder and spitting the parts he doesn't want down my shirt or in my face. If I get a popsicle, he's right there, ready to claim his portion of the treat. I have to stay in the kitchen or living room to eat the popsicle and share with Pinky. When the other birds are out and I happen to exit my room for some reason or other, Pinky braves the wrath of Little Foot, who has one hell of a vicious grudge against the lad, to come say hello to me and ask for neck and head scritches.

The scritches just started happening over the weekend. One morning I reached my hand up to him so he could climb aboard and have our daily moment but, instead of getting on my hand, he turned his head around and gave me a sort of stink eye. He turned his head so much, it reminded me of Regan in The Exorcist. I drew my hand back and he straightened back out, so I reached out again and, again, Pinky pulled a Regan. I was about to shout up to Matt that something was seriously awry with his bird, then it hit me - Pinky was actually asking for head and neck scritches from me. Since I've had the shit bitten out of me several times, I very slowly extended my index finger until I made contact with Pinky's feathered head. He was eating it up! And, ever since, he solicits scritches almost every time I venture out of my room. In fact, I can't leave the room without Pinky being on me like a freckle, demanding scritches, pulling my hair, popping his tongue (it sounds like a person making a popping bubble sound with their lips), lifting his wings and vibrating them, and just generally being in my face. Earlier today, as I made my way upstairs, the crazy bird came out of nowhere and landed on my back. I felt like a pack animal! A couple of days ago, he landed on my head and refused to move. I couldn't take the time to get him off me, so something I never imagined would happen, happened: I found myself sitting on the toilet, pooping, with a bird on my head pulling my hair. It was a South Park moment, no doubt.

I've already informed Matt that his bird is now mine, since he's converted Toby to his Bald Boy Club. All joking aside, and despite the irritation of Pinky's criminal behaviour and his penchant for pulling my hair, pooping on me, and literally being in my face, I feel very honoured that he finally decided he likes me. From what I understand, if a bird isn't bonded to you, the older he gets, the less of a chance you have of winning him over. I think Pinky is around 20 years old, so this is monumental. Who knows, maybe we'll get close enough someday for him to decide to molest me, like he's doing to the Mother Unit in the video below. We can but hope!

  • Current Location: the house
  • Current Mood: dorky dorky
  • Current Music: Thee Caretakers - Praxidike
And me love Pinky, too! I failed to mention that we both share the unfortunate OCD trait, Dermatillomania. If you notice his chest, it looks kinda raggedy. Senegals have a brilliant bi-coloured chest and belly, unless they compulsively pull their feathers out. Pinky hones in on just that area. Since I go around with eight toenails, because I'm constantly pulling what little nail I can snatch out of my little toes and raze the nail bed to boot, all without realising I'm doing it until there's blood everywhere, I immediately felt a kinship with him because of that and his being bullied by the others in the flock.


Edited at 2015-03-18 05:00 am (UTC)
Oh, and it should also be of note that Pinks isn't deformed or suffers from raggedly feathers anywhere else, even though he kind of looks like it in the picture above. I had no decent pics of him so I went out to take one. When he saw me holding the camera in front of my face, he bristled and started growling, with his beak wide open to further intimidate. Essentially, he was saying this, with almost the exact same expression. I need to make note to keep spoons away from the bird.

GinosajiNOPE

Oh, and it should also be of note that Pinks isn't deformed or suffers from raggedy feathers anywhere else, even though he kind of looks like it in the picture above. I had no decent pics of him so I went out to take one. When he saw me holding the camera in front of my face, he bristled and started growling, with his beak wide open to further intimidate. Essentially, he was saying this, with almost the exact same expression. I need to make note to keep spoons away from the bird.

GinosajiNOPE



Edited at 2015-03-18 05:13 am (UTC)