My former in-law’s African Gray Parrot, Rubus, would call Walt in Nan’s voice, and when he answered, he’d say, “Shit!” to him and then laugh like mad.
He’d also say, “Shut up, Walt” because they both said, “Shut up, Rubus!” when he got to using their favorite naughty word, just quoted above.
He heard it so much that he thought it was a greeting— when somebody knocked on the door, Walt or Nan would say, “Shit!”, then get up and go answer the door. One day he was on the front porch in a large cage when the ladies from church came over and knocked on the door. You’ve got it, he gave the standard greeting.
It only made it worse to have one lady then say to another, “Did that bird just say what I thought he said?” They all nodded at each other, and I’m sure, worried about Walt and Nan’s souls. Then they all turned and looked at the bird, and the bird said, “Shut up!” It made perfect converstation sense to Rubus.
About halfway through hearing this story from Nan, I was nearly on the floor, literally ROFL. Especially since they then tried to teach him to say, “Jesus loves you,” and he’d have none of it. He stuck with normal conversational English as he heard it in the home. None of this “Pretty Bird” or religious stuff— Ma and Pa were great Christians but of the Earthy type!
This still has me doubled over laughing as I retell it. … I’m sure glad cats don’t talk!
A few words about my former in-laws’ African Gray Parrot, Rubus, and the trouble with church-ladies his potty-mouth got them into.