Analogy: I always have more respect for the good old fashioned Preacher who had a hard life and made mistakes. A man who's been "in the gutter" and climbed out of it, has real life experience and knows that I too have made mistakes. I identify with him and he me.

The "College Minister" on the other hand who came from a perfect background and is now standing in the pulpit trying to tell me that he knows how I feel and how I should act, doesn't have a CLUE about the "gritty life" and what it takes to rise out of it. The same might be said of a Lieutenant leading his men into battle. Who do you want to lead.... a college boy with no real battle experience or a Sergeant who's spent months or years on the front lines?

More to the point: (Some of you have heard this before)

There was a couple who always wanted a Moluccan cockatoo. From everything they'd ever heard... cockatoos made the best pets in all the bird world. They bought a beautiful male from a local breeder and were very happy. After a little experience and investigating, they decided this young male needed a mate to grow up with.
Now they had a pair. About 2 years later, all hell broke loose. Much was learned but much was a mystery. Some major problems were solved but others remained.

Much time and effort was spent by the couple to provide the best home possible. Then it happened: The couple got divorced and illness set in at the same time to one party. The birds had to go. Like giving away their human baby, it was very tragic and sad. (later conditions changed somewhat but that's another story)

Then one day years later the guy... after retiring and staying home for 5 years decided
that he was in a position to rescue. He felt that he had a support network that could
step in should anything ever happen. (living alone DOES have it's drawbacks)
So... he did, and this time... prepared the best of homes for his new charge. This new bird had the best possible conditions outside of being in the wild. But, in a year the guys life turned completely upside down. Deaths in the family, new living arrangements and other emotionally upsetting conditions demanded that he once again re home his bird. ( For you new people, I'm of course talking about me)

Moral to the story? No matter how hard you try... life can throw you a curve. No matter
how much you love something.... you may have to relinquish it. No matter how much you prepare... you can never guarantee the outcome. Finally, no matter how depressed you become over your situation, never let it get you down to the point of giving up your goal of helping others understand the problem.

Not one person on this board is infallible. Not one person here can guarantee a home for a lifetime. Not one person here has avoided making mistakes. Not one person here can guarantee that life wont throw them a curve so great that it wont be completely insurmountable.

Why am I dredging this all up again?

Because I feel a tenseness here lately that I want to address:

I'm not going to rehash all the reasons why people get upset on this board. We know that
parrot people are very strong personalities and have strong opinions. We know we'll always have Trolls and spies. We know that at any given time... somebody's feelings are going to get hurt. Ok? We know all that. But let's remember one thing: Lots of people will come
here with stories just like mine. We need to support them if at all possible and not jump the gun. When people screw up and buy from breeders or pet stores and then come to us for advice, we need to gently ( GENTLY! ) inform them that what they did was a mistake... then drop it. Period.

We're all only human and we need to remember this every time we post. That doesn't mean that we shed our convictions in any way... it simply means to tell it like it is without being an a**hole in the process.

I've made my mistakes and I hope to use that experience to help others. I hope you will too.