You feed it, you teach it to speak, and what thanks do you get? Cockeyed stares and the occasional: "Hello?" -always asked, never spoken, and always with a sarcastic lilt. And when it rains the feathered fiend goes into a screaming fit like a dot matrix printer with a terminal paper jam.
But it's smart, I'll give it that. It's smart enough to know how to screw with my head, and enjoy it. I've shouted "No!" at it enough times that now it shouts it right back.
"Wanna shut up?"
"Want I should wring your neck?"
That's not all. Get this. At work, when I get phone calls, I'm required to answer by stating my first name. I've been at that office for fifteen years, so the custom has followed me into my home life.
The bird knows my name and mimics me perfectly. Worse, it knows the sound it imitates is my name.
You don't know the meaning of disconcerting until you hear yourself speak your name - except it's not you saying it.