One time it was thought that Tabitha the cat had killed the parakeet, Noah. Tabitha managed to nose her way past an insufficiently closed bedroom door behind which Gwen was allowing Noah to fly freely, to the great amusement of her daughter Nicole. In seconds, Noah was bouncing off the walls and Tabitha was tearing through Nicole’s bedroom like a cheetah after a gazelle. Feathers filled the room like falling snow flakes. Noah disappeared. A tearful Gwen and Nicole chastised Tabitha and searched every corner of the room only to conclude that Tabitha had eaten Noah. Tony felt badly for Nicole, but put his foot down nonetheless.
“No more birds . . . that’s it. They make a mess . . . it’s a waste of money . . . and it’s a miserable life for the birds, anyway. They all drop dead in a couple weeks, from heart-attacks, because the cats eye them like a snack all day. You want another bird? Look out the damn window - there’s birds everywhere.” “I know,” said Gwen. “I hear you. I don’t even enjoy taking care of them anymore. I just need fifty dollars for cat food and some hay.” “What do you need cat food for? Didn’t Tabitha just eat Noah? That should hold her off for a good week.” Tony went back to whatever he was doing that afternoon only to learn the disappointing news a couple hours later. “There’s great news,” said Gwen. “Tabitha didn’t kill Noah after all. We just found her under Nicole’s bed.” “Dammit . . . but what I said still stands - Noah is the last bird we are ever going to own.” “I know, I heard you before.” Later that evening Tony was in his garage with a flashlight trying to determine the source of an odd noise he was hearing. “Do you hear that?” asked Tony to Gwen, who just walked in to see what Tony was doing in the garage this late at night. “What noise?” “Shush!” The noise resumed. Gwen looked up. “Noah!” “What?!” “Tony, Nicole was so upset when we thought Tabitha had killed Noah that I took the money you gave me for cat food and hay and bought another Noah.” “Gwen,” said a dejected Tony, “even Noah’s Ark - which had two of everything - didn’t have two Noahs, but now . . . we do.”
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