|I was out having lunch with Nico and one of her friends, Matt, the other day and he recounted an experience he had at our house. About a year ago he had been waiting for Nico to get ready to go to a movie and he went into our kitchen to get a glass of water, when all of a sudden he heard me call to him from the other room. “Hello!” I called. He replied “Hi, it’s me, Matt. I hope you don’t mind, I’m just getting some water.”
There was a pause and then I said, as if I hadn’t heard him, “Hello!” He came in to the room saying ,“Yeah, hi, I’m waiting for Nico and I got a little thirsty….” He looked around the room, but he didn’t see me anywhere. He was confused, but shrugged and went back into the kitchen.
“Hello!” I called out. “Do you want to go out?” He answered “Yes, we want to go to a movie….where are you? Hope?”
“What!??” I yelled. He came running into the room and I was nowhere to be found. Perplexed, he stood in the middle of the room. When Nico appeared and he said “Nico…. your mom is weird, she’s playing some sort of bizarre game with me.” He explained what was happening, and she replied nonchalantly. “My mom isn’t even home. You have been talking to Zazu, our bird. He sounds exactly like my mom.”
Yes, our parrot can sound just like me. This has been amusing, confusing and even occasionally worrisome. Because Zazu yells “What?!” in my voice, the kids, when they were smaller, would tell their plans to the bird and think they told me. “Mommy!!” Ilsey would yell…. “What?!” Would come the reply. “I am going across the street to Nick’s house.” Then off she goes. I would come downstairs and not be able to find her.
I am not the only person Zazu imitates. He speaks with a perfect English accent half the time. “’Ello Govna’…. Nice cuppa tea? Alright then…. Brilliant! Dreadful!!” are all part of his repertoire. He also enjoys copying inanimate objects. Every morning we get a full demonstration of his sound effects loop – telephones, fax machines, garbage trucks backing up and an odd noise that took me a while to figure out….. me chopping mushrooms on a cutting board.
Lest you think he is the only member of our household that isn’t musically inclined, he sings the Star Trek theme. (the original, not Voyager or Next Generation) He also enjoys jamming with Laurence. He especially loves the blues and can come up with some pretty impressive counter melodies and blues licks.