Before we picked up Rudy (whose name will eventually be changed), I responded to a couple other ads on KSL, looking for a fun bird.
I'd responded to an ad about an African Gray Parrot, thinking it was a legitimate ad. Here is the response I got:
The Congo Africa Grey Parrot advertised has been bought by one Mrs Lisa and the baby is doing quite well with her and her family according to her recent update me about the baby welfare at her home.I want to refer you to one Rev Steven A Ballmer who was a graduate of Denver Seminary and he works as the Bereavement Manager at Hospice of Metro Denver. He bought one female africa grey bird from me as well. He has been transfered to West Africa in continuations to his missionary work. He went there with the congo african grey Parrot he bought from me.. Unfortunately, Africa is not the place for these type of bird . He contacted me 2 days ago to find a caring parent that will adopt the baby back to the USA. He had no time for her, also the african weather is so harsh for the bird according to him and this is really troubling him and his mission in West Africa. Contact Rev Steven A Ballmer and tell him I refered you to him. He will be excited if he knows you are from me.
Write Rev Steven A Ballmer on his email address Below:
(email address removed)
Get me informed as soon as you adopt the baby from him.
Steven A. Ballmer is the CEO of Microsoft. In addition, the AFRICAN parrot couldn't tolerate the AFRICAN climate? Really? LOL Well, I decided to respond:
Oh, that poor parrot. I bet Africa can be too extreme of a climate for an African Gray Congo Parrot.
So how would we get the parrot back to the US? Do you think it would be able fly if it was told how to get here?
I definitely am interested in the bird. I feel just awful that Rev. Ballmer is having his work interrupted because of his concern for the bird. It just shows what a caring and devoted individual he is.
This time, "Steve" responds:
I sent the breeder to find a caring parent for my Congo African Grey Male. I live in USA before I got a divine call to serve God and humanity here in West Africa and this gave me little or no time for my baby parrot. The weather here is also not lenient with my baby. He hardly comes outside with me because of the weather here. I want to get him adopted back to USA where he will be sent back to the weather he acquainted with before. He is 8 Month old, he is a wonderful little boy and has so much personality and presently current on all health record. He is DNA sexed - Male which he will come with is DNA paper along with a Hatch Certificate. He is fully weaned and weaned at his own pace. He enjoys playing with toys pets and children. Am giving my African grey out for $350 plus shipping. You will promise me that you will be sending his pictures to me in every 2months as an update with regards to how he is doing with you. I love him so much but he will be missed. Please treat him as if he were your baby.
I am attaching Buddy picture for you to view.
Steven A Ballmer.
(A photo was attached, but it was a picture they'd snagged off google, and removed the date stamp)
So, I had to respond, and add a little more crazy in there.
I would definitely send pictures of Buddy every two months. I can tell you love the bird and care that he is in a good home.
Buddy is a beautiful bird and I am excited to have him.
How much is it to ship him to the USA?
Do you have pictures of your flock holding Buddy? I want to put together a scrap book for Buddy so that he can remember you, and can remember all of the interesting people he has been able to meet. I will find other people with African Gray parrots so that our birds can have playdates together. I know that Buddy will want to show the other birds all of his travels!
Pretty nutty, huh?
Thanks for the response,
Am so excited to read back from you that you are going to take good care of Buddy. The shipping fee is included the asking price which is $350. Oh no i don't have pictures of my flock holding Buddy. I believe you are God sent to me and Buddy because have been looking for a good home for Buddy. Please take good care of him and don't forget of sending Buddy pictures every 2 months as an update with regards how the Buddy is doing with you. I will like to start the shipping arrangement.
I beleive the shipping agent who help me ship Buddy here will surely deliver the him to your destination , I will need your name address phone# and your nearest airport to your home for the shipping arrangement so i can email you my details where to send the money.
Looking forward to hear from you.
Steven A Ballmer.
I really had no intention of sharing any personal information with him, so I decided to get distracted.
I am so excited to be welcoming Buddy to my home! This is very exciting. I'm even buying new scrapbooking paper and a laminator so that I can get to work on his baby book.
I am really sad that you can't take some pictures of Buddy with some of his favorites amongst your flock. Please try to arrange something, I can tell he would be really sad if he didn't have those memories to cling to. Even worse, I worry that he may suspect me of trying to make him forget his first person, and accuse me of being jealous. If he has these issues, I would have to take him to a bird therapist, and I've heard that can get really expensive.
That's very exciting you have a bird agent. Do you think he does talent angency too? It seems like Buddy is very beautiful and talented. Maybe he can help me break Buddy into the movie business and he could be a movie actor. Then you could see him even more often than the photos I would send every two months.
Will the bird agent fly with Buddy here to make sure all goes well on the flights? I don't want Buddy to eat the peanuts they serve- I'd worry he may choke on nuts since he's still so young.
I crack myself up.
Thanks for the response,
I can't send you another pictures of Buddy with some of his favorites amongst my flock because i did not came down here with my camera. And am sure he will not think that you wanted him to forget me but the only thing i need from you. Please send Buddy pictures as you promise me. I have made an arrangement to have Buddy ship as soon as your payment is confirmed. And the shipping agency have promise me to make sure all goes well on the flight.
Buddy is very good in identifying letters of English Alphabet and can repeat words. Singing is a part of Buddy daily live. Adopting my Buddy will mean that you need not worry owning a watch dog because he will always keep you alert as soon as a visitor moves in to your house. He is medically up right and has all her DNA vaccines up to date. He is hand tamed and has very good temperaments.
Kindly get back to me with your shipping information. Looking forward to hear from you.
Steven A Ballmer.
How convenient, no camera!
I am very, very sorry that you don't have a camera to take a picture of the flock and Buddy. Could you possibly draw a picture? That way, at least Buddy would know I tried. I don't want to let her down. I take my role as a bird mother very seriously.
I am excited to meet my new baby. I am glad to hear that you are teaching her the English alphabet and songs. I am a little worried though. Have you taught her the letter S? I don't trust that letter all that much because it's the first letter in Satan, and it also looks like a coiling serpent, which we know is what caused the fall of Adam and Eve.
Also, what songs have you taught Buddy? We are a God Fearing family, and I don't want a bird singing some of that evil rock and roll.
My shipping address is: (I put the address to the Salt Lake City Police here)
The gender has been changing on Buddy back and forth, so I decided to make her back into a girl bird.
Thank you for the Info,
Oh my bird is well train and was trained in christianity way. The amount that you are going to send is $350. I contact my church member here how to receive money and I was told that you can send money via Western Union. I will made arrangement to have Buddy ship to your home a on a nextday delivery.
Buddy will be ship immediate your payment is confirm. You will have to visit any Western Union Store around you and send the money through Western Union. Below is my information to send the money.
Receiver's Name: STEVEN BALLMER
Zip Code: 23401
Text Question: COMFORTABLE
Text Answer: HOME
Once you have gotten the Western Union done you will be sending me the Western Union money transfer control number which is 10 digit which is (MTCN) for confirmation. I will be awaiting your response with the mtcn and sender's information Asap.
I will be awaiting your reply as soon as possible.
Steven A Ballmer.
I have to admit this guy isn't willing to play like some of the other stories I've seen, so I am kind of getting bored of the guy. Plus, when I thought this was a legit thing, I'd used my "good" email address. I don't want the guy messing with me too much, so I decided to end it.
I had the most miraculous experience. I know that as a man of God, you will be as thrilled as I was.
I was walking about my yard when I was drawn, no, compelled to a certain corner. I could tell the hand of God was leading me. When I felt I should stop, I dropped to me knees in a thankful prayer that He is aware of me. As I bowed my head, I found the most amazing thing. There at my knees was a bird, still partly in its' shell.
That was when I KNEW God had a call for me.
God wants me to raise this poor, orphaned bird. I know that Buddy is probably a better bird, and will live much longer. I know that Buddy is struggling with the extreme African climate. But he has a man like you to take care of him, and he has your congregation, who I know must love him too. Who does this bird have? He had nobody until God called me to find him.
I shall name the bird Steve in your honor.
I am truly touched to have been able to meet a man such as you. A man with your level of honesty and integrity is not something found every day. I shall cherish your emails forever.
I thought that had been pretty obvious that I was done, but apparently not:
May the light of God shine upon you and shower is blessing upon you, thank you for the reply mail and God will help you in taking care of steve as you named him. Kindly let me read from you once you send the money so that i can proceed his shipment ASAP and email me the MTCN #. I look forward to read from you.
Steven A Ballmer.
I giggled as I wrote my response.
Baby Steve is an absolute miracle. I see God's work every time I look at him. I have attached a picture of your namesake.
Taking care of a newborn bird is a huge undertaking. They have to eat every 20 minutes. I can't leave him for the amount of time it would take for me to walk to a western union office and back. I also can't take him with me because we have a fairly warm climate here too, and if a big, tough bird like Buddy can't tolerate the heat, I'm sure Steve can't either. I look to you as a bird expert, and if you feel letting birds out in warm weather is inadvisable, then I must follow your lead. Plus, as a man of God, you have a better link to his creatures than I.
Maybe I will be able to buy Buddy from you when the weather cools down and I can take Steve outside for a long enough time to walk to the Western Union office.
If you are worried that Buddy can't tolerate the African climate that long, you have my permission to find another buyer for him. I would hate for his health to dwindle.
Best wishes and God bless.