In October of 1999 we adopted a five-year old by the name of Jasper. We truly did not foresee how much he would infiltrate every aspect of our lives when he came home. His first owner, an Army soldier, either didn’t research her purchase in advance, didn’t have time to take care of one or just thought, “Oh, it be cool to have a parrot.” Just glad she gave him up so he could come home with us.
Here is Jasper T. Williams and he is 20 years old. We don’t know his birthday so we celebrate a day in October as Oh My Gosh It’s You Came Home To Your Forever Family We’re Never Letting You Go You Are Safe With Us We Love You day. LOL
And he is. No longer will he be stuck inside a cage, never getting out, and not able to stretch his wings. No more will he not be loved. No more will he spend his time alone.
I’m not sure how many people here have seen the movie “Rio” which is a children’s movie that involves a macaw. I have never seen it. Most times when there is a movie I think Jasper might like I position the tv so he can view it and if it looks he is enjoying it I will dvr it next time it is on.
When this movie started on Saturday morning I went through this process for my bird. I sat down to watch the first few minutes while waiting for my husband to get is shoes on for we were heading out. Within the first five minutes of the show I was spitting bullets. For they showed the owner placing a cup of hot cocoa with marshmallows and a few chocolate chips on the plate for Blue to enjoy.
Birds are not able to handle chocolate, and if you proceed to give your bird this delicacy it will kill them. The reason being their body temperature is lower than humans so they are not able to melt the chocolate hence causing them to choke on it. Even my husband said it had to be coffee. It couldn’t possibly be cocoa. But it was.
I know this is a kid’s movie but seriously? What if people viewing the movie thought it was okay to give this to birds in the wild or their own? Jasper was staring carefully as he watched Blue eat the cookie and then he looked at me. Even he was wondering what was up.
To me this was very irresponsible and I feared what might or could occur because of this scene. Just because it is meant for a younger audience does not mean it shouldn’t be accurate. A fact I home in on repeatedly when I write my own children’s book and the amount of research I do per volume.
Am I reacting to much? I don’t believe so. I just truly hope no birds were hurt due to this gross oversight on the people who made this film. Facts need to be checked for all genres and all ages. Something I strive for when I write.
My bird Jasper is a rather interesting bird. The fact he can talk to us and respond appropriately always amazes me. Some people can say he is just mimicking you, and yes on occasion he does. But here are some examples of Jasper knowing when to say the right thing.
For the record Jasper hates bugs. One day I saw he was still as can be. I followed his eyes and the direction and soon came across the object that had my bird captivated. It was a bug. Getting a paper towel I killed the bug and picked it up. Now we can’t just toss the bug out. Oh no no no. Jasper has to see the dead body or else he will still be looking at it. This particular day this was our conversation.
Me: “Look Jasper I got the bug for you.” I went to his rail to show him. He walked steadily toward me keeping his eye on the tissue.
Seeing the bug was dead he said, “Thank you.” Jasper then proceeded to go back to his ladder.
If that does not convince you then how about this. I was going about my business talking to Jasper but not really paying attention to him. Finally it occurred to me he was not listening as he held perfectly still. He eyes locked with mine and then to his beak then to my eyes again. Leaning in close I saw Jasper had an ant on his beak.
On cue he said, “Mom.”
I replied, “Yes Jasper what?”
Of course I did what any normal person would do. I started to laugh, my poor bird. He did not take kindly to that.
Which I did after which I gave his head a pat which was his payment to me for helping him out. These little scenes occur often for my family and Jasper. Thanks to that he has given me so much material some of which was incorporated in my book, Jasper, Amazon Parrot: A Rainforest Adventure.
He does mimic yes but there are so many times he responds at the right time with the right saying which just shows us how smart our Jasper is.