Maynard’s Christmas List

My Amazon parrot Maynard is part child, part puppy, and part snapping turtle. I love him like a child when he calls me “Momma!” and like a puppy when he plays tug with my fingers, and maybe even like a snapping turtle when he lunges for my husband and misses. If I could get him whatever he wanted for Christmas, I certainly would. So I did a little daydreaming and thought about what he would want.

Maynard’s favorite toys are plastic things he can chew to pieces. Lids from yogurt tubs, small cups, plastic chain, and any empty container gives him hours of fun. His perch has a little flange where I can hook things for him to chew on, and it’s easy to punch a small hole in a clear plastic lid to anchor it to the perch. I think of that as his pacifier, because he will chew happily away for hours at a time. Sometimes I put a dollop of yogurt on the lid, and he cleans it off before destroying it.

The absolutely favorite lid of all, however, is anything red. Our peanut butter has a red lid. Our coffee creamer has a red lid. Not only hours of fun, but something about the red causes him to make the cutest chirp sound. Mike thinks it sounds like a chihuahua barking, but I find it to be a short, sharp call. I often wonder if it has anything to do with the red on the tails of double yellow headed parrots. Whatever the reason, he finds it very attractive.

Amazons are supposed to love bells. Well, not Maynard. He will give a bell a ring or a tug, but there’s no love involved. Totally not interested beyond the one touch. Maybe I need to read that part of the parrot book to him.

He does love almonds, and peanuts, and sourdough toast. He’s a pasta fiend, loves chicken too. A couple days ago he climbed up onto my chair while I was eating a ham sandwich. It never crossed his mind that I wouldn’t share with him, and of course I did. I thought Maynard would not like the mustard, but he rather enjoyed it. I went back to my reading when he wandered off to look for new nesting sites in the bathroom and linen cupboard. On his return, I told him the sandwich was all gone. He said, “Bye-bye!” and curled up to sleep on the chair.

So the ultimate present for this bird would be a red lid filled with almonds, pasta, ham, and yogurt. My mind boggles at the mess that would create, even if I kept it in his cage. The almonds would work, so maybe I do have a good substitute for the ultimate. Thanks for reading, and I’ll be back on Sunday.

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