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Sanctuary For Sociopaths or Erodent Feathers


Brad, his wife Ginger, and three toddlers are going to Amy’s Bird Sanctuary next weekend.

Brad is my neighbor, and Ginger has custody of their three little girls. For divorcees with young children, it seems they get along pretty well, well enough to take family outings together twice or so a month.

Brad asked me about my experience with the place before planning to spend half a day there. My experience was from years prior, had been hands-on, and I didn’t have kind words to say about the owner or her so-called sanctuary.

All of them, exotic and not, had been relegated to their cages. No more than five visitors were allowed in at one time, and the maximum time she allowed was fifteen minutes. So I told him he’d need to pay ten bucks a pop to pet feathers that didn’t belong to the bodies breathing underneath them.

He laughed pretty hard, and it made me smile, but Brad just moved in a few months ago and doesn’t know the difference between when I’m telling a joke or the truth. Apparently, he thought my story was a joke moment.

Amy, the owner of the sanctuary, is like Oz times the Nutty Professor equaling Hannibal Lecter. It’s an odd equation for sure, but I reversed it, and yup, that’s what she is.

Legend has it she’s been a world traveler since she was a teen and found a passion for catching wild birds. Number one, to eat them and number two, to study their feathers to replicate them. She’s done well enough to get a grant for her mouse and guinea pig Halloween sanctuary.

People don’t realize the ‘birds’ are all rodents with feathers glued to their bodies, and of course, none of them fly because they’re all in cages. She’s a master; I’ll say that for her. When the beak from the guinea pig toucan I was petting fell off I about pissed myself while screaming and running out of the place like my hair was on fire.

She didn’t let me back in, and I couldn’t prove it cause she told everyone I killed it from shock, and it’s not like I can report her without getting myself locked up in a straight-jacket.

So, she’s been there for ten years, surviving on the good grace of the bird-loving community. That’s what she calls them.

I wish Brad and his family luck. If a beak falls off on account of his unruly girls, maybe teaching them that nothing can fly with fake feathers is a lesson they need to learn, or, perhaps they need to learn that mice clean up pretty nice as bluejays.

Who am I to judge?

Hell, if I could eat cows and then fashion replicas to get a grant for a dairy farm, I might. When folks visit and ask me about milking them, I could say their nipples are endangered and can’t be touched.

Problem solved, and farm paid in full.