Jaz: June 1998 – October 2008

Posted: October 15, 2008 in home, life
Tags: , , ,

There’s no problem so awful that you can’t add some guilt to it and make it worse” (Calvin in Bill Waterson’s Calvin and Hobbes).

I saw this in the last frame of a Calvin and Hobbes cartoon in the the mid-eighties and for some reason it stuck with me in the back of my mind all these years. I had no idea that I would understand this completely twenty something years later.

I found out exactly what it feels like Monday night. While I was steaming some green beans on the stove, my daughter and I both dozed off. I woke up about an hour later to find that the water had boiled off and the Teflon coating of the pot had hazed up the apartment. Smoke from Teflon is highly toxic to birds. Actually, deadly.

As soon as I saw what had happened I shut the kitchen down and opened the door and some bedroom windows. I took Gabby’s little Parakeet outside but she was dead by the time I got her there. While I was in the middle of this little drama, Gabby came and said that Jaz, my beloved Congo African Grey parrot was also in distress. I found her trying to climb back up to her favorite spot but she was just to weak to get back up there. I knew what was happening. I wrapped her in a towel, took her outside and petted her head and stroked her beak and then she died right in my hands. She had another 60 years ahead of her.

I really hate myself right now.

  1. Oh, dude, I am so sorry. It sounds weird, but it’s so sad when a pet accidentally dies.

  2. laanba says:

    Oh Greg, I’m so sorry. I wish I could say something to take ease the grief and guilt. All I can do is give you a virtual hug.

  3. I’m sorry Greg. So sorry.

    I know the urge to blame yourself is strong. You can only acknowledge what happened and then let it go. Easier said than done, right?

    I know it us.

    You have some options. You can get two more birds; change cookware and vow to never do anything like that again.

    But that only takes care of part of the problem. That which eats at you and tugs at your heart and makes you close your eyes in this hard, painful quint each time the reality of what happened comes up and kicks you in the ass is what won’t go away.

    Only time will help. Try to let go it bit by bit, Greg.

    Pet’s are like family members. I’ve got a ten year old cat who’s my daughter and she’s starting to decline. She goes and hides in darkened corners when she feels bad and lately, that’s often.

    Again, I hate this for you, Sweetie.


  4. Greg says:

    Thank you for the comments. I appreciate the kind words.

  5. Natalie says:

    Greg, I’m very late in my reply, but I am so, so sorry to hear about your birds.

  6. Chica says:

    That completely sucks! I am so sorry.

  7. Greg says:

    Thank you Natalie
    Thank you Pat

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