The Cruelty of Nature

Nature can be cruel. I inherited three birds from The Genie a few years ago. They were his mom’s birds and he hates the idea of animals in cages so he decided he’d let them fly free—only they have clipped wings so, really, they’d just be doomed. I took these rowdy birds and they ended up killing my poor canary by stressing him out. There’s a lone, angry female love bird and there were two budgies. I came home one day and the prettier of the two was lying stiff as plaster on the bottom of the cage. I think the other two jerks had stressed him out as well. Bird hearts are very fragile.

It’s amazing that this bitchy love bird has lived without a mate—I think they usually die when their mate dies. She still nests and lays pitiful empty eggs. The other day I caught the budgie and the love bird trying to mate. I guess it has finally come to this—I guess we all do unfortunate things when we get lonely.

Speaking of, every time I visit my grandmothers—who are so clearly hard-up for some serious company—I get to learn things about them that really pushes the limits of what I consider disturbing. In this way, I have really learned tolerance. I have also learned of neat things I have to look forward to as a very old person. And I have learned that my grannies are neat but really weird. Yesterday my grandmother told my brother about a time when she was nursing and milk poured out of her nipples like waterfalls. This is the same granny who told me she often wondered whether old people got white pubes. This grandmother has taught me honesty.

The other grandmother is constantly embattled. Cost Co. recently over-charged her account by something like $8.00. She got my grandfather to drive her over so she could yell at them. But the whole way over she sort of cried to herself—whimpers, I guess. And then when they got there, she got her game face on and yelled in broken english until they reimbursed her. This grandmother also likes tests of endurance. She is constantly falling down. She fell down the stairs recently. All the way from the top to the bottom and hit her head all along the way. Amazingly, she didn’t break a single bone, but did manage to snag prescription pain killers. In addition to her tests of will and endurance, she likes to test her memory. Apparently she hides things from herself and others—like keys and important papers—and then tries to remember where she’s put them. My grandfather recently found a key hidden under an apple. My grandmother is brave.

I am not brave. I’m actually kind of dumb sometimes. This stems from uber-boredness I sometimes experience in those periods of time between my really awesome and fun times. You know, lulls. So, I decided recently to glue fake nails on so I could pretend to look really cha-cha and like I don’t work with my hands. But I have really narrow nail beds and so the nails all sort of looked too big and then I painted them and they only looked worse. So, before my tax appointment I decided to take them off. The instructions tell you to submerge your nails in acetone until the nails “melts” off. I didn’t have that kind of time. So, I pried and bit and did everything I could before I had to make that damn appointment. This was a very bad idea. I ended up with half-melty nails and I’d have to shake this guy’s hand and talk taxes and I decided to wear some knit gloves to hide my monstrous hands. I felt like a damn leper! I ended up taking off one of the gloves because it was a hot day and I lost it. This hand was covered in black fuzz. Sometimes there is just no winning.

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