R.I.P. Birdie

bird-sun-conure

This morning, I shared a gif of a parrot taking a shower.

I then check my emails and receive this message, the first of the day.

Good morning. I am very sorry to tell you that Birdie passed away this morning. She had been just fine until about 6 months ago when she began having occasional seizures. We are assuming she had one last night. Jessica found her at the bottom of the cage this morning and it seemed like she was hanging on for her to get home. She died shortly after Jessica picked her up. She spent most of every day on Jessica’s shoulder or inside her shirt during the winter months. Jessica is devastated. She lost her best animal friend.

In case you missed the original post on the background of Birdie and our family, you can find it here: “I Miss Birdie.”

Sad Day. Yet, what incredible joy this little creature brought to our family.

RIP Birdie.

All the variety,
all the charm,
all the beauty of life
is made up of light and shadow.

~ Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina


 

Simpatico

theresa-curra

I watched from a distance. A short, feisty, scrappy, spit-fire. A Chihuahua.

Place of Birth: The Bronx. With accompanying accent.

Deep skills. A reputation for getting things done, but doing so and leaving a large wake. She didn’t tolerate fools gladly. She was quick to show up colleagues. Result: A bulls-eye on her back.

It was January, 2011. It was a 12-minute interview. I told her that the job was hers sans the wake creation. I would have zero tolerance for air turbulence. I created enough of my own.

I went on to give her the pre-game disclosure. And motivational speech:

You’re playing on the A team now. Out of junior varsity.
We use proper English in our memos and letters.
No slang. Or whatever that is coming out of your mouth.
I need to show up at the right airport. At the right meeting. On time. All the time.
No crying when your feelings get hurt. You want a hug, get a dog.
I had better not find HR in my office on any antics.
You won’t keep up. Just accept it. [Read more...]

You’ve Still Got A Friend

Thursday.  He was running late for lunch.  My college roommate.  Just like him to be late.  My mind whirring back to college…

Short (very) and stocky build.  Permanently attired in University of Minnesota Gopher sweatpants and an oversized sweat shirt with hoody. Everything hung large.  Everything rumpled.  “Unkempt, having an untidy or disheveled appearance.”  Webster’s should have added his name.  He was the magnetic center – the beating heart – of every college party.  Quarter-bounce champ into Pabst Blue Ribbon at the Alibi.  Ringleader for late night games of Hearts. Out late. (Very)  Up late. (Very)  Blessed with a quick wit and quicker on the ice.  Selected easiest path to graduation: Art. Sculpture. Sociology. Physical Education. And even this was a struggle. Yet, he was never late for hockey practice.  Vote never taken, but most likely to end up next to the curb.

He walked in. Hair salt and peppered grey. Blazer. Blue open collar shirt. Tropical skin tone. (He’s got it together.)

[Read more...]

Why…

black and white, pondering, thinking, think, thoughts, hope, aspirations, fear

Why am I afraid to dance, I who love music and rhythm and song and laughter?
Why am I afraid to live, I who love life
and the beauty of flesh and the living colors of earth and sea and sky?
Why am I afraid to love, I who love?
Why am I afraid, I who am not afraid?
Why must I pretend to scorn in order to pity?
Why must I hide myself in self-contempt in order to understand?
Why must I be so ashamed of my strength, so proud of my weakness?
Why must I live in a cage like a criminal, defying and hating, I who love peace and friendship?
Why was I born without a skin? Oh God, that I must wear armor in order to touch or be touched.”

~ Eugene O’Neill, The Great God Brown and Other Plays


Eugene O’Neill (1888-1953), was an American playwright who won the 1936 Nobel Prize in Literature “for the power, honesty and deep-felt emotions of his dramatic works, which embody an original concept of tragedy.”  His plays involve characters who inhabit the fringes of society, engaging in depraved behavior, where they struggle to maintain their hopes and aspirations but ultimately slide into disillusionment and despair.  O’Neill wrote only one comedy (Ah, Wilderness!): all his other plays involve some degree of tragedy and personal pessimism.


Source: Thank you Whiskey River for quote.  Wiki and goodreads for bio.  Black and White for image.

Today, be…

Source: The Magnificent Life of Plants

A belated birthday card to my friend…

paco and migue - birthday pictureI missed your birthday. I’m sorry. From the pictures, it looks like you had fun.

This post started as a roast. A walk down memory lane.

And there are just so many soft targets. Where does one start.

Well, let’s start with your Baby fat. It must have been cute at five. It’s all a bit unseemly at 50.

While we haven’t worked together for years, the memories are fresh. Your complete lack of organization immediately comes to mind. Your inbox gushing like water over a dam with thousands of unread emails. (Most of them mine.) And not a worry on your brow.

Your ability to consistently stumble to the finish line, harried, flustered, often late and not even knowing it.

Yet, despite the urging from your wily Dominican assistant (blond looks good on her in the pic btw), I couldn’t go there.

You play bigger than this.  So much bigger. 

I remember how your eyes would light up when you spoke of spear fishing as a child in the warm tropical waters of Puerto Rico.

[Read more...]

I am Grateful…

I’ve never met Francine.  I’ve never spoken to her.  She was one of my first blog followers.  I don’t know how she found me but I’m glad she did.  Every morning (early) Francine finds something good in my posts and bangs on the LIKE button.  This morning she also shared this video with me.  After my last post, this is exactly what the Doctor ordered – inspiring Francine, very inspiring.  Thank you.  I’m grateful for you…

NOW TURN THE VOLUME UP…


Check out Francine’s blog @ Francine In Retirement