What Goes Around Comes Around


Ah, beautiful spring. The birds chirp, fly high and sing all day. Here at the Dancing Dog Ranch, we’ve had a flurry of activity with nest building and birthing babies. It brings back found memories of the only bird we ever owned – One Eyed Jack. Of course, he only lived here for 3 days.

Last year, I noticed Sammy the Siamese Terrorist out in the yard playing with something bright yellow. Normally, any critter the cat drags up isn’t more exciting than grayish brown, so I raced outside to find the cat batting around a parakeet.

At the time, I had no idea that Stroke of Genius was into birds. He scooped the bird up and noticed that one of Jack’s eyes had been damaged. It was assumed the Siamese Terrorist was the guilty party. 

Enter Admiral Big Guy who saw the bird and announced that Jack must have a proper bird cage. We headed to the closest town in search of same and purchased a rusted cage so large it could easily have housed the Baltimore Orioles. Upon returning home with our acquisition, we found Jack on the floor. While we were gone, he had flown into the ceiling fan and broken his neck.

Stroke was beside himself. A proper burial ensued. To sooth his aching heart, SOG bought several cans of bright spray paint, hid in the garage and created a masterpiece in memory of One Eyed Jack – a neon camouflage bird cage that looked like it was straight out of an episode of Miami Vice. 

I appreciated his effort, but didn’t offer to buy him a new bird as I knew it would drive my three already-crazy cats stark raving nuts. This oversized testament to Jack sat in the garage and took up space until last Saturday.

After pondering it for a week, Stroke decided to sell the cage at the local street sale. He figured since I’d already written a couple of columns about Jack and the bird cage, he might get a few bucks simply for notoriety’s sake. He couldn’t have been more right. 

At the sale, a nice lady walked up and eyed the bird cage. Then she asked his name. He told her and she looked at him square in the eye and said, “Where’d you get that cage?” Stroke explained the story and she said, “Do you know Medina Mikie?” SOG sighed, “Unfortunately, I do. Why?” She replied, “Well I read her column every week and that’s the bird cage she wrote about, isn’t it?” Stroke agreed and then she lowered the boom. “One Eyed Jack was my parakeet.”

Luckily, she didn’t blame SOG. In fact, she was party to Jack’s demise. It seems she has lots of parakeets and quite a few large cages. She puts those cages all together so the birds have an enormous hotel in which to flock. One day, when she was cleaning the cages, One Eyed Jack decided to fly the coop. She never saw him again.

A month or so later, she read my column – which, in fact, was an obituary of sorts to her. If only I had known, I would have been a bit more delicate.

After they reminisced about Jack, she bought the cage and told Stroke she’d add it to the hotel back at her house. Hopefully, her flock will sing because now they have a new neon camouflage hotel addition that looks like it came straight out of South Beach. Now that’s what I call a real Bird Cage. 

God Bless You, One-Eyed Jack. May you chirp in peace.

Spreading laughter around the world…one chirp at a time.

Mikie Baker


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