You see that single remaining apple on my apple tree? The apple tree is right next to my boundary fence. There used to be two apples but now there’s only one. I know perfectly well that the neighbour reached over with the help of a garden rake and pinched the second to last apple. The neighbour is obese in the extreme. I wish he’d fallen off the ladder and broken his neck. Not that I wish ill on anyone.
Those last two apples I was going to share. I was going to eat one myself and then by dividing the other into slices I was going to give bits of it to Perseus, my canary. Perseus is yellow, sings like a trooper, and loves apple.
Now that the neighbour has selfishly pinched the second-to-last apple and presumably scoffed it down I’m at a loss as to what to give Perseus for a treat. I’ve already injected weed killer into the remaining apple so if the neighbour tries any funny business on the ladder with the rake he’s going to be dead meat. But I can’t of course give any of it to the canary.
Then today I noticed the last apple was gone. I confronted the neighbour over the back fence. He still had the rake in his hand but I didn’t see an apple. He denied pinching my apple, so I said “You’re a liar and there’s weed killer in the apple so I hope you die.”
I always hang Perseus’ cage on a nail on the back porch if it’s sunny and later I noticed a slice of apple in his cage and Perseus was dead. I was pretty devastated, but fortunately the neighbour is inordinately proud of the watermelons he’s growing in his garden.
Norma had a saying which she oft cited: I’ve buried three husbands you know. If the truth be known, all three had died unnatural deaths. They had all been murdered.
Norma was exceedingly rich. She lived in a big house (these days alone). Her sole interest appeared to be her two pet canaries. She had a yellow canary and one with bits of yellow but it looked more like a sparrow. Only the yellow one ever sang, and usually with a melancholic air.
Norma had tried to breed them but she wasn’t sure if she had two girls, two boys, or one of each. Whatever the case, neither had made any attempt at making a nest.
Norma belonged to the local Caged Birds Association. There she met and befriended Gordon, mainly because she thought he might know how to sex birds. He did, and so Norma invited him to her house. Well! One thing led to another, and before you knew it they were married, and Gordon’s two pet canaries went into the same aviary as Norma’s two. In the blink of an eye one of Norma’s and one of Gordon’s were creating a nest together.
Norma was delighted with the success of her breeding program! So interesting! There were four fledglings! All grew into a bold yellow and sang with a melancholic air. They were a great consolation to Norma when she came to bury her fourth husband.
Betty got a Valentine’s card in the mail. It was the sweetest card. It read “Will you be my Valentine?” Betty had never received a Valentine’s card before.
Betty was forty-six years old. She had always regarded herself as a bit of wallflower. Spinsterhood, she had determined, was going to be her lot in life. And now this…
She sat in her corner armchair (next to the canary cage) and glowed as she read, and re-read, the card. Who was it from? The canary sang its heart out. There was a knock on the door.
There at the door were twelve red roses. There was no delivery person. Clearly the anonymous admirer had left the roses there himself. How wonderful is that? He must live nearby if he is able to deliver and disappear. But who was it?
There were only two “eligible” bachelors she knew of who lived nearby. There was Hermon Vociferich and Julian McDougall. Both rather handsome. Both rather rich. They lived together. She had always thought they were gay, but she had no reason to think that really. And now, clearly, one of them thought she was worth looking at twice.
Valentine’s Day passed. The next day came and went, and the next day, and the next. Nothing happened. Betty felt sad. The years passed. Betty’s canary was long dead.
Tomorrow the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is springing a surprise afternoon tea for Betty’s sixtieth birthday. It’s a charity she has volunteered a lot for over the years. Betty has always been wonderful! No one knows that she volunteers to help fill a big gap in her heart.
Gail loved animals, which is why she had so many pets. She had a cat and a dog, a canary and a cockatoo, a couple of ducks, a rabbit and a guinea pig and three mice. They would all run around together, except for the canary of course. The canary couldn’t run around but Gail often let it fly freely around the house provided the windows and doors were shut. And could it sing? My word! What a diva on a sunny day!
Then one day she couldn’t hear it singing. Had it perhaps escaped? Gail checked the windows and doors. Everything was closed, but it must have found an escape route somewhere. Gail opened the house up and left the canary’s cage door wide. Hopefully it would fly back.
It was quite a while after – Gail wasn’t exactly the best of housekeepers – when she was vacuuming under the dining room table that she noticed a few yellow tail feathers and a bird’s clawed foot.
By the end of the year the dog had got the ducks, and the cat had got the cockatoo, the rabbit, the guinea pig, and the three mice.
Gail still loved animals, and continued to pamper her cat and her dog. She replaced her deceased pets with a budgerigar and a cockatiel, a couple of chickens, a hamster and a rat and three gerbils.
These days Gail has a cat and a dog, and has taken up origami as an interest.
The really horrible witch turned herself into a beautiful damsel about to be eaten by a wicked dragon. A handsome prince, called Prince Bogdan, came along and rescued her. They fell in love and got married and had five children. Then they got sick of each other and divorced.
The really horrible witch then turned herself into a beautiful sleeping princess who could only be woken by the kiss of a prince. Prince Bogdan came along and kissed her. They fell in love and got married and had five more children. Then they got sick of each other and divorced.
The really horrible witch then turned herself into a beautiful singing canary in a golden cage that would turn into a dazzling woman when released from the cage. By now, after marrying the witch twice and having ten kids, Prince Bogdan was onto it. He thought he would leave the canary in the cage. It would starve to death and the witch would learn a jolly good lesson. So the canary died.
But the witch was even more cunning than Prince Bogdan. She hadn’t turned herself into a canary at all, but was hiding in a cupboard. She came out of the cupboard disguised as a voluptuous lady of the evening, called Evening Primrose, and Prince Bogdan fell in love with her and they got married and had yet another five bloody kids. But Evening Primrose had run out of magic and stayed on as the voluptuous lady of the evening. Every day she had to cook for fifteen kids and stand at the sink and do the dishes. She was very fulfilled, and they lived happily ever after.