The Sulphur-crested Cockatoo

We have a lot of birds where I live. Most of them make beautiful sounds…all except one. The Sulphur-crested Cockatoo.

This is what the Sulphur-crested Cockatoo looks like.

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Beautiful, isn’t it? (Image source: Wikipedia)

This is what the Sulphur-crested Cockatoo sounds like it looks like.cockatoo2

Yoga with Pets

I am used to being challenged during yoga, as you can see here, but recently I was tested on a whole new level.

We have had a new addition to our household which means I now have twice as many cats “assisting” me with my plank position.

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And when my core wasn’t getting an intensive workout there was the toe-licking.

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But it was impossible to be annoyed at what happened next…

yoga-and-pets4Namaste.

How To Get Revenge On Your Cat

Lately my cats have been getting on my nerves. It’s just little things they’re doing – like dragging blankets through the house (my blankets, not theirs), stealing the dog’s food, play-fighting on the couch – so violently that couch cushions end up all over the floor, scampering across the kitchen counter (I’m looking at you, Cherri) and just being generally irritating.

They have, in fact, been so annoying lately that I am starting to wonder if they have some kind of beef with me. There is a lot of debate on whether cats can be vengeful or not; some people say yes (mostly cat owners) and others say it’s not possible for a (non-human) animal to have an emotion like revenge. I tend to lean towards the side of Hell, yeah, they are!

It started me thinking… what if I decided to get revenge on my cats? Of course I wouldn’t actually do that, but if I did…how would I go about it? Here’s what I’ve come up with so far…

How to get revenge on your cat

1. Cats are attracted to boxes like moths to a flame. Put a giant empty box in the lounge room. The vengeful part? Make sure it is completely sealed.

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2. Keep the door closed to just one room of the house. It will soon become the only place your cat wants to be.

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3. Eat bacon in front of them.

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4. When cats encounter something new in their environment it really freaks them out. Put an object in a place where there is normally nothing (like the hallway). It doesn’t even have to be anything scary-looking; for example, a lamp will do nicely.

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5. Borrow an annoying puppy for the day.

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6. Deny access to your lap.

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If you have any more revenge ideas feel free to e-mail me. If I like your idea I’ll draw it and put it up here.

Without my Cat and Dog…

Our pets drive us crazy from time to time, but things are never boring with them around. Recently I got to thinking, what would life be like without them?

Without my cat and dog…

who would stalk me and make me feel important?

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who would kill the really big spiders?

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who would create an obstacle course for me when I come home from grocery shopping?

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who would kill the giant rat I didn’t know I had?

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who would make my yoga practice more challenging?

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who would alert me to the fact that a car door has been closed, somewhere?

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who would prevent the house from being overrun by plants?

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who would make our boring clothes look like expensive fur coats?

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…and, goodness knows, those tissues aren’t going to get ripped up and spread all over the house by themselves!

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Yep, life would be pretty crap without them.

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My Cunning Plan

I was a pretty naughty kid and got into my fair share of trouble. My real problem was that I just never fully thought things through. Like the day I found my little sister, Christie, emptying my favourite cereal onto the kitchen floor. She was having the time of her life.

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I was horrified! This was my favourite cereal in the whole world and it was being wasted! I was so mad! I was so shocked! I was so going to tell mum!

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I turned to go, when I suddenly realised that I had a real opportunity here to get my angelic little sister into a lot of trouble. The floor didn’t really look that bad, so the first thing I had to do was completely destroy the kitchen.

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I made a game of it.

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It was kinda fun.

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When I thought the kitchen looked bad enough I ran off to tell my mum. Christie was going to be in so much trouble. For once it would be her and not me; I would be the good child! Everybody would talk about the day that my sister destroyed the kitchen and wasted all that cereal. They’d talk about how naughty she was and shake their heads in despair. I could hardly wait for my mother to come and see what she had done!

I raced into mum’s bedroom and started shrieking hysterically about what Christie had done to the kitchen and how I had tried to stop her, but she was unstoppable in her rampage!

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My mother didn’t even look up from her magazine. She just said “Oh well, be a good girl and go clean it up.”

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Not only did Christie not get into any trouble, not only did I have to clean up what can only be described as clown vomit, but I was forced to eat boring, old Weet-Bix the next morning with the full awareness that it was my own stupid fault.

Brutal Life Lesson #2

I was one of those kids that chased anything that moved – bugs, lizards, birds, cats… I’d pretty much pick up anything that wasn’t fast enough to escape my clumsy, but well-meaning clutches.

So, when my parents took me to a beach that was covered in scuttling crabs I thought I had died and gone to heaven. There were literally hundreds and hundreds of the little beggars rushing about, popping in and out of little holes in the sand. They were so cute and I was having a blast chasing them around trying to catch them, when suddenly, I hit the jackpot! I found a huge crab and I wanted it so freaking bad.

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This crab seemed to know it was bigger than the others; it didn’t even try to run away from me. It just sat there – daring me to pick it up. Although I wanted more than anything in the world to do so, I was very aware of the size of its claws. So, I just stood there for a time trying to work out the best way to pick it up, while also trying to estimate the potential pain if those claws got a hold of me. As I was pondering these things a kindly old man wandered by and saw my dilemma.

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He explained to me that if I just reached from behind and picked it up with my thumb and index finger then the crab’s claws wouldn’t be able to reach my fingers. It sounded plausible; he seemed like a nice old man and why would a nice old man lie to me? Plus, old people knew stuff about the world. Now that I was armed with this new knowledge I decided to pick up the crab using the kindly old man’s technique.

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I picked up the crab feeling super confident. I turned the crab to face me so I could look at it closely. I was so cool – I knew how to pick up crabs! Suddenly the crab began to reach underneath itself with its giant claws. I didn’t care, because I knew how to pick up crabs!

 

Apparently the crab didn’t know about my special crab-picking-up technique because it casually reached under its belly, grabbed my index finger and pinched it violently until it drew blood. I let out a blood-curdling scream and flung the poor crab to the ground. The old man was nowhere to be seen and I ran off bleeding, screaming and crying to my parents.

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It was about another fifteen years before I understood their enormous amusement when I told them, while crying hysterically, that I was never, ever trusting an old person ever again!

Where did the old man go and what happened to the crab? Who knows?

I have a pretty good idea, though.

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You might also like Brutal Life Lesson #1

Brutal Life Lesson #1

I was not a pretty child when I was five. I had a really bad hair-cut, big, ugly glasses and, for several months, a giant, brown eye-patch over my right eye (to try and strengthen the left one – which didn’t work). I wanted so desperately to be beautiful. If I were beautiful people would love me and buy me presents and I would be a better person all-round. Yep, in my five year-old mind, life would be all rainbows and ice-cream if only I were beautiful.

I remember my first day of school very well because it was the day I saw the most beautiful girl I had ever seen in my life.

This is what she looked like.

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She had gigantic green eyes with long black lashes, long, jet-black, wavy hair and ivory skin. She looked like a princess and that was exactly how I saw her.

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I was incredibly drawn to her because, from everything Disney and every fairy-tale I had ever read had taught me, I knew that her nature would match her beauty. Why, she must be the kindest girl in the whole school! So, even though I was incredibly shy, I knew that she would be sweet and nice and set off immediately to introduce myself.

This is how it went down.

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By the way, if you think I’m exaggerating about how utterly goofy I looked, here’s my class photo from grade one.

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The Sun

I have a morbid fear of something that has led many people to believe I am a crazy person – I am scared of the Sun. I’m not talking scared in a oooh, the Sun is mighty and powerful, I have great respect and awe for it kind of way, but more of a the Sun is a death-ball of horror that is hunting me down and trying to kill me kind of way. Now, before you start agreeing with the aforementioned assessment of my sanity, I put it to you that if you are not afraid of the Sun, then you, sir or madam, are the crazy person!

The Sun is approximately 150 million kilometres away from Earth. Yet, if I go outside at noon in my bathers and just stand there, minding my own business, it will burn me. Not only that, it can burn me so bad that my skin peels off. It can even cause cancer in my skin. Cancer!  The Sun can kill me from 150 million kilometres away! How is that not terrifying? I can’t even look up at the Sun and shake my fist at it in fury because it will burn the retinas right out of my eyeballs!

Aside from my zombie-apocalypse nightmares, I am also regularly treated to Sun-apocalypse nightmares. Sometimes I am hurtling towards the Sun, being slowly burned alive. Sometimes the Sun will either explode or die. Other times the Sun will simply consume everything, me, the Earth, the Universe. It becomes some insatiable monster, hell-bent on growing ever-larger. Because of this, I make it my business to avoid looking at pictures of (or learning anything about) the Sun. If a documentary on the Sun comes on television I cannot reach for the remote quickly enough. Unfortunately, my ignorance of the facts about the Sun means that situations like this often happen while watching regular TV.

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For reasons that I am trying to forget, the Sun has been in the news a bit lately which has made it hard for me to avoid learning new things about it. A few nights ago I accidentally looked at the TV when it showed a close-up of the Sun. I shuddered in horror and turned away, but the image was already imprinted on my brain. This has brought on a series of nightmares of which I will share with you in pictorial form.

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I have really tried to come to terms with my fear. I draw happy, harmless-looking suns in most of my pictures and I even got a tattoo of a smiling sun. I have tried to think of the Sun in positive ways…as a giver of life, a nurturer of the Earth and a warmer of reptiles. But you know what? That’s crap! We are utterly reliant on that gigantic, people-killing, planet-swallowing hell-ball and it knows it!

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to look at pictures of the Moon.

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Socially Inappropriate Security Guard Guy

I’m pretty sure we’ve all met someone like him. He’s the guy who approaches you with what, at first, appears to be a simple, friendly greeting. You respond with an equally friendly greeting because, well, it’s polite (and you’re not a total bastard). However, after about four minutes of mind-numbing small talk, interspersed with disturbing, uninvited insights into his personal life, you realise you’ve been tricked. But by then it’s too late – you’re in a one-sided conversation with socially-inappropriate security guard guy.

I recently visited country Victoria to spend Christmas with my parents and my sister and her family. I was warned by my sister that a large number of inhabitants of a nearby town (which shall remain nameless) seemed to be “not quite right”. Intrigued by this information, my husband and I jumped in the car, and took our son and nephew along for the drive.

When we arrived we bought the kids some bakery delights and sat at a table on the sidewalk of the main street.

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This also happened to be the exact moment that socially-inappropriate security guard guy went on his smoke break. (I know back when I was a smoker and went outside for a cigarette, the first thing I always did was find some young children and light up right next to them.)

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Now, I tell you with no exaggeration that this man proceeded to talk non-stop for fifteen minutes. After what we thought was just going to be a pleasant (and brief) greeting we suddenly found ourselves held captive by a man who apparently had millions of things to say and not enough people to say them to.

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He didn’t care that we had stopped listening. He didn’t notice our uncomfortable body language. He didn’t see my husband and I exchange glances of disbelief. He was even oblivious to the fact that my son had somehow managed to swallow his loose tooth.

Socially-inappropriate security guard guy just kept on yammering while my husband and I attended to my son’s emotional distress. I eventually had to interrupt him, “Excuse me, my son just swallowed his tooth”. He barely even skipped a beat. That’s right, he just kept on telling us things while I tried not to vomit at the thought of swallowing a mouthful of chocolate eclair mixed with blood and tooth.

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Eventually we said goodbye to the insane, annoying security guard and drove back to my sister’s house to relay our adventures of the town nearby. The moral of this story? Don’t drive to the next town over in the hopes of finding people who seem “not quite right”, because you might actually find them.

Oh, and it is my firm belief that this is what happened after we left.

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