Friday, August 26, 2011



Paddy, our green cheeked Conure, has learned a foreign language. Once upon a time, when we asked the question

‘Little birdies go….?’

He would give a wolf-whistle. These days, when we ask that question, he barks.

‘Woof. Woof.’

Parrots learn by rote. If they hear something often enough, they begin to imitate the sound, (We have a lot of dogs in this neighbourhood, some of which bark incessantly, day and night)

Conures are known to recognise sounds appropriate to certain actions and events. For example, when Paddy sees and hears us gathering up car keys and mobile phones etc, he will say,

‘Back soon!’ He recognises that we are leaving to go somewhere and Pete has always made a habit of saying this to him when we are leaving the house.

When we return from work or an outing, Paddy will greet us with

‘There’s the birdies. Hello.’

(Yes, he does use the plural (birdies). For some strange reason Paddy tends to pluralise many of his words)

Those are just a couple of examples of how our little bird has learned to respond to both verbal and visual prompts.

This morning I found myself thinking about how I respond to certain prompts. For example, those of you who read my Blogs regularly will know I was all excited about taking a course in Copywriting. I signed up and paid for the course and I was anxiously awaiting access to the materials so that I could start work.

Unfortunately, the company in question has been having some serious technical issues with their server. When the material didn’t arrive after what I considered a decent amount of time, I emailed to ask what was going on. I received an apologetic response and an added bonus file. The problem should be fixed by that night I was told, and the materials would be available online the next day. But it didn’t happen.

Yesterday I requested a full refund and the money was returned to my Credit Card within a couple of hours. I received another very apologetic email telling me that they were as frustrated with the whole affair as I was and wishing me well.

So the fact is no real harm has been done. I have my money back. I’ve even gained some bonus materials for free.

But I feel so deflated. Here I was all revved up with no place to go, as the saying goes.

Still once upon a time I would have fallen in a big heap. I would have been saying things like ‘Why do I even bother? Things never work out for me.’ But this time, disappointed though I may be, I can see that this was just ‘one of those things’. If I really want to go ahead and learn Copywriting, then I have a good start in the bonus materials I received and I can take it from there. This is just a minor hiccup, not the end of the world

See, I’ve learned a foreign language too. It’s the language of Optimism.

©Lyn Murphy 2011


Kathryn said...

A hiccup, but an annoying one!
I've always wanted a bird, but we have a cat. Possibly not a good combination.

Ray Colon said...

Hi Lyn,

Sorry that the course didn't work out, but the response from the vendor suggests that they actually were experiencing technical problems and probably feel disappointed as well for having lost a customer. Perhaps you could wait a while to see if they sort out their issues. The dream isn't dead, it's just deferred.

I had a decidedly different experience with a vendor yesterday. I purchased a very expensive web video player ($200; lots of features; very nice piece of software) and spent the afternoon configuring the settings and running tests. I'm redoing the company website, so my costs are reimbursable. Anyway, the purchase included a 30-day trial to their support site and a $37 monthly fee thereafter. The option could not be unchecked at checkout. In order to cancel the subscription, I had to first sign up for the service and then I searched for 20 minutes to figure out how to cancel. They made it very hard to do. I was livid and sent them a scathing email. I told them that I loved their software, but that I thought that their business practices were bogus. If this is how they treat satisfied customers, I can't imagine how badly they would treat the dissatisfied ones.

Hang in there and keep searching for the right opportunity until you find it.


Anonymous said...

Hi Lyn,

A shame about the copywriting course. However, something else will crop up, just wait and see. At least you got your money back which was a pretty good outcome in the online business I think.

I agree with you about birds. Smudgie just has to hear the first rasp of the peeler on an apple and he says: "apples for Smudge?". If I go close up to a certain part of his cage (I call it the attic) he always responds the same way: "Give us a kiss".

Keep smiling Lyn..........


Cheryl said...

It's strange isn't it? We had a very strong lead for our aussie move and whilst we didn't get a definitive 'yes. come to australia' what we do have is a 'i'll help you out as best I can just now but give me a few months and i might be able to say yes, come to australia'.

There was such a big build up in my head to this conversation that, because i didn't hear a 'yes', I felt defeated and tired. My husband was raring with enthusiasm and I was slumped, feeling like it would never happen for us.

I feel different today. Not excited but positive. I think when you work and dream so hard, it's difficult to find perspective.

Now get cracking on that copywriting!! ;o)