Monday, February 9, 2015

Alex & Me

What is this water coming out of my eyes?  I did rub my eyes the other night just after eating salt and pepper pistachios, which I regret.  I do not regret those pistachios, no way, it was the eye rubbing, yeah, that was an error. Alex & Me is a non-fiction book about a scientist and her work on the cognitive abilities of her African Grey parrot, Alex.  Alex was very famous and the whole book starts with memorials as to his untimely passing.  Do not read this book if you've just lost a pet or other loved one, you

The sad part is only the first part, once that's over, Pepperberg explains her thirty year study to understand this super cute bird's brain.  That sounds kind of boring, but I didn't think it was.  You should keep in mind that Pepperberg is not a typical non-fiction author, she is the scientist behind the whole project so she doesn't mess around. It's a small book.  I liked it, but I really love animals, and she writes this for us "norms." If you consider me normal, which is debatable.  By the way, we had a parakeet when I was a kid, as awesome as he, I'm good on bird ownership--they will chew on anything, including your lampshades and poop indiscriminately.  

If you read this, (and even if you don't) you should definitely check out Alex's news clips on YouTube.  He was on several news segments and he was also on Nova.  He speaks quite clearly for a bird and I'm driving poor Dave crazy with my impressions.  I can't help myself.  When Alex is bored or frustrated, he wants to back to his cage saying, Wanna go back. Who hasn't been at a crappy party and thought that?  Truth, Alex, truth.

Alex often says: Wanna drink of water.  He says that when he genuinely thirsty or when he just wants to interrupt his chores.  If you "wanna" drink with something stronger, I think a bird themed drink is appropriate.  Love Birds: 1&1/2 oz. vodka, 2 oz. sweet and sour mix (preferably homemade--easy to do and worth it), 1 dash dark rum and 1/2 oz grenadine. This should be a pink drink.  Apparently when you scratch Alex's head the whites around his eye turns pink, which is the parrot equivalent of blushing, how adorable is that?