09:09 – As of yesterday afternoon, gay marriage is finally legal in North Carolina. I predicted last year that it’d be legal in all 50 states by the end of 2014, and it looks like my prediction will be accurate. Only the radical Religious Right politicians are even bothering to talk about it anymore. It’s a done deal, and long past time. SCOTUS should have prohibited gay marriage bans when they ruled against miscegenation bans in Loving v. Virginia in 1967.
Once the acceptability of gay marriage is officially the law of the land, I hope the activists won’t sit back on their laurels. The next step should be to overturn plural marriage bans nationwide to legalize any form of plural marriage, particularly line marriages. The ultimate goal should be to eliminate government interference in marriage, period. Two people (or 20 people) should be married because they say they are, not because any government sanctions it.
Barbara called yesterday from the Gatlinburg area to tell me they’d stopped at the Bush’s Best Baked Beans Museum and outlet store. Who knew there was such a thing as a baked beans museum? I told her that if they sold by the case at a price better than the $8.28 per case/8 that Costco charges she should pick up a dozen or two cases on their way home. Alas, the outlet store sells only individual cans.
Kim’s African Grey Parrot disappeared or was birdnapped yesterday around dinner time. The bird lives in a very large cage, big enough for Colin to fit into, and Kim had the cage out on the driveway behind the house to let the bird enjoy the nice weather. When she went down to bring the cage indoors, the bird was missing. The door was closed and latched, so the bird didn’t get out by itself. Half the neighborhood was out looking for it, including a bunch of kids on their bikes, but no one spotted it. Kim was out driving around until well after dark looking for it, but no joy.
I know that some species/breeds of pets are frequent victims of kidnapping by thieves who resell them, but I don’t know if African Grey Parrots are one of those. Our neighbor Mimi thinks one of the neighborhood kids opened the cage door to pet the bird and was then afraid to say anything when it escaped. The bird’s wings are trimmed, so it can’t fly very well, just well enough to flutter up into a tree. I told Kim last night that my guess was the bird had flown up into a tree, tucked its head under its wing, and gone to sleep. Kim is out again this morning looking for it, and Colin and I also looked on our morning walk. If the bird isn’t found, it’ll be a major loss for Kim. She’s had the bird for a long time. I think it’s about 21 years old, the same age as Kim’s daughter Jasmine. African Greys can live 75 years, so Kim expected the bird to outlive her. She sure wasn’t prepared to lose it.
11:04 – The bird is back home safely. As I expected, she’d flown up into a tree and slept all night. This morning, her calls gave away her position. She mimics sounds that she’s heard and (apparently) liked. She does several telephone rings, including a cell phone ring tone that causes many people to reach for their phones. Her backup beeper sound causes people to look for the truck that’s backing up. And so on. So there she was this morning, sitting in a tree in Kim’s next-door neighbors’ back yard, making an assortment of noises that shouldn’t have been coming from a tree.
Kim’s sister tried to lure the bird down with a lollipop attached to a long stick, but the bird wasn’t having any. So another of the neighbors brought over her husband’s tall stepladder and a long stick and used it to nudge the bird until she fell off the branch and fluttered to the ground. Kim and Mary had a very bad night, expecting the worst, but everything worked out well. Incidentally, I’ve known Kim since she moved to Winston-Salem from NYC in 2002, and I’ve never heard her call the bird anything but “Birdie”. As it turns out, the bird’s real name is Jessica.
16:08 – Hmmm. I just took a six-question quiz on CNN, Quiz: What city is right for you? Here’s my result: