Saturday, August 27, 2005

Oh oh oh oh oh

I’ve got a song stuck in my head, and it’s driving me MAD! I wouldn’t mind so much if it wasn’t so bloody irritating in its own right, but it is, so I’m doubly irritated. It starts off with a stuttering warble, Oh oh oh oh oh, like some bad sixties hit, and then all I can remember is two lines. Two lines with all those Ohs repeating endlessly:
I believe in the boogie baby
times are changing
everything will come around
we're just moving in circles baby
all or nothing
everything will come around

Round and round in my head! All last night, till four in the morning. Then I woke up with it. Oh oh oh oh oh, I’m sick of it!

But apart from the bad music concert I’m experiencing, the damn thing is getting in my life, like some insane prophetic tune! Times are changing. My cockatiel, Dingbat, is dying.

Now I’m not going to get too soppy over a bird, I am today sane enough to keep things in perspective.

But I do find it sad as Dingbat marks the last of an era gone.

Many years ago, before the BH and I married, a friend went off to Thailand for the winter and asked us to watch his cockatiel. I’m sure the owner told us the bird’s name, but I wasn’t paying attention so called him Dingbat as an interim. Of course the owner never returned and we got stuck with the squawking, bad tempered thing.

But I couldn’t get rid of it, because the owner might’ve returned. so I spent some time taming him to the point he was happy to be held and preened.

This became an item of interest as every Sunday we held a lunch party for the BH’s friends. This was before my BH fell in love with computers, and at this point he was a bus driver. In those days there was a glut of single male drivers from the UK, all living in bedsits, and as the BH was the only one with a woman (who also happened to cook a decent roast), and they descend upon us once a week to eat and drink us broke.

It was at one of these meals we discovered Dingbat was a party animal. When the plates were cleared he used to come out and sing at the table for his supper. He would try anything and everything, but the sweeter the better for Dingbat. Then he discovered alcohol and really became the centre of attention!

Red wine was always his favourite tipple, as the beer bubbles made him sneeze, and boy would he sing for that! Once tipsy there was no stopping him and he would crone away as grown men thrilled at being allowed to preen his head feathers.

For years Dingbat was the first name on our party lists, and most of my memories included a demented drunk bird singing his heart out and begging for a head rub.

Then we had kids.

There were no more parties and No. 1 son had sneezing fits if Dingbat was allowed to fly around.

For the last decade, excepting the odd occasion alone with me, Dingbat has sat in his cage in the corner of our kitchen. He still sings with the radio, but his party days are long gone. Instead he spends his time threatening to bite the many tiny fingers that poke into his cage as they pass.

On Monday he had a bump on his wing, today it is the size of a grape. So I took him to the vet first thing to see if it could be removed.

But the vet was amazed to see a cockatiel Dingbats age. I thought they lived longer. The vet was nice and gave us some antibiotic powder for the growth, but said Dingbat probably wouldn’t survive a general anaesthetic.

Dingbat was shaking when we got home and I got the children to whistle with him till he calmed from the unexpected handling.

But he’s old, and had more fun than most along the way. His time is almost here. And I shall miss him.

Dingbat loves that damn song.

Oh, oh, oh, oh, oh…


Blogger MarkD60 said...

My friends bird who was pretty quiet except for when the song "99 Luftballoons" came on, then the bird would go crazy singing.
Sorry about your bird getting old.

Sunday, August 28, 2005 2:26:00 pm  
Blogger MarkD60 said...

my friends HAVE a bird

Sunday, August 28, 2005 2:27:00 pm  
Blogger OldHorsetailSnake said...

It sounds as if Dingbat has had a good life, so he can go to his reward without wondering what might have been.

Sunday, August 28, 2005 3:45:00 pm  
Blogger Moxie said...

I'm having a glass of red and toasting to Dingbat!


Monday, August 29, 2005 12:21:00 am  
Blogger Daisy Mae said...

Dingbat had a good life I am sure and I hope he has a longer one. He sounds like such an awesome bird.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005 4:20:00 am  
Blogger Anduin said...

Aww, too bad about your bird. It's nice that you have good memories for him.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005 10:47:00 pm  

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