Brandon - Part 5
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What's In A Name?

Scarlette had enough of me calling him "Hey, Crow". She wanted a name for him.

We turned to my field of employment, show business for inspiration. Brandon Lee had just been killed during the filming of The Crow so, Brandon was her suggestion. A friend / acquaintance of mine, Neil Gaiman was the writer of the comic book series Sandman for D.C. Comics Vertigo titles and had a raven named Matthew as a continuing character.

After much discussion, it was decided that, since Brandon Lee was actually "The Crow", his name should be first, so he became "Brandon Matthew". I felt that the name did not sound complete, therefore "Allen Poe" was a no-brainer, even though I spelled it wrong on purpose. No one ever noticed this. At least, no one ever mentioned it to me.

The "Tweaking" of The Cage

The realization that the cage I had so carefully "channeled from the ether" was not perfect caused some changes. Even though our yard is quite shady, there were times that I could see when the cage would be bathed totally in sunlight. This seemed to me to be a bad thing. Brandon could have times when he would not be able to get out of the sun. (Did you ever notice that a crow, when it is overheated, will sit with its beak open and its tongue hanging out like it is panting?) This prompted me to put two overlapping sheets of plywood on the top of the cage. This would allow me to slide one or the other (or even both) off to give him sun and/or shade. Not to fail to mention protection from rain and other inclement weather.

It then struck me that the cage was open on four sides (the bottom was covered with a bale of cedar bedding) and, if a neighborhood dog or cat decided to visit, they could run him around the cage endlessly. This resulted in attaching tarps with bungee cords to close off one end and one side of the cage whenever we were not in the yard with him.

One amazing note, we have almost always owned a bird. Parakeets (Wacky-bird, Ding-bat and Noel) and we now have a Sun Conure (Sunny-bird, who we happened to get at the Winter Solstice). It is necessary to clean a crow's cage nearly every day. The cedar chips have to be combed to refresh the surface and has to be changed nearly once a week. You have no idea how messy a crow is. The realization that this is multiplied by the amounts of crows that you have in your area as a natural occurrence makes you want to remember to wear a hat at all times!

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