Enter The Dragon

Katie by photoshop…”Katie Blink.”  (why the name,… in a bit).  

It was Friday, February 29th when I drove up to Aquamain’s Fish and Reptile Store in Greensboro (NC).  Having worked there for the 3-years while I was in college, and having had such fond memories of the place, … I’m always excited to go back.  But that day; that particular trip, was quite different because I was in the market for my new Australian bearded dragon pet and hence, the newest addition to my family.  (now if you don’t know much about reptiles, a bearded dragon is the friendliest, hardiest, and most personable of the lot).  Anyways…my girlfriend and I had been up to Aquamain’s several weeks earlier when they had a new shipment of baby “beardies” and I was automatically hooked… again.  On a back-note: (in college) I had 3 bearded dragons and a mali uromastyx (Egyptian desert lizard).  Their names were Judah Ben Hur, Percival, Grimlock and Mr. Stevenson (so, yeah, “Katie” is an abnormal name for me).  Judah, or “Ben” as she was most often called was my heart.  I had her for almost seven years and in that time, she grew up (cute baby story, but it warrants another blog entry), and with the entrance of Percival had several clutches of babies..  I later found out, down the road, that those babies were breed and had babies of their own.  So “Ben” ended up being a great-grandmother before she passed. 

Katie being watched over by daddy

Okay…the name.  It all started when I was over at my friend, Chad’s house.  We were on the couch watching a basketball game and out of nowhere he says to me, “You look like a Jonathon.”  And not more than a second goes by, and Jenny (Chad’s wife) exclaims, “Yeah…. Jonathon Blink.”  Completely random I know!.. but it lately, it has become a nickname…and one that I was going to pass on to my upcoming pet. 

Back at Aquamains, in light of their March Madness sale, they only had one bearded dragon left a tank and he had a strange curvature in his lower spine.  I was instantly disappointed, because I knew that I wasn’t going to take him.  Fortunately they had separated his sister (“katie”) and had her somewhere in the back of the store.  The saleswoman brought her out and I was amazed at how small she was (half the size of her brother.  she couldn’t have been much more than 3 weeks old). 

The ride home was soo enjoyable, and Katie was “riding in style” in her addidas shoebox, padded to the walls with soft hand towels (for insulation and warmth).  But the curious littl’ katie would have rather been out… roaming and causing mischief… as Jenny and I could hear from the littl’-katie-fingernails racking against the inside cardboard.  On the way home (having heard she was a female [from the sales person]) we decided that Jonathon might not be the best of names (even-though noone would be the wiser).  So… I started to think of different female names (which reminds me. I came up with another blog entry topic 🙂 !).  I wanted a name that wasn’t the cliche pet name… and that also wasn’t too exotic or pretentious.  In my head, I was working through the K’s and said Katie (and instantly the dragon turned her head and turned an eye towards me).  “It’s a sign… a sign from the Lord!” (okay, the Monty Python reference aside…)  …So in my head, that was then, “swimming” with various alternative names.. and thoughts of why I shouldn’t name her Katie…I began to think, “Do I know a Katie who isn’t nice?”  My answer to that was, “no.”  Most Katies that I know are very nice and often, just as adorable as this one (but not quite).  For example, Katie Couric…Katie Holmes… and um, my cousin Katie.  Other nice people names under consideration were (Karen, Diane, Natalie and May)

Katie... just a'posinAnywho… Katie had an exhausting first day and went to sleep quite soundly (and early) on her first night.  Jenny and I were in the next room watching Indiana Jones and I occasionally had to make an excuse to get up and check on her (sorry baby 😛 !).  Now, she’s doing great.  She has a luxurious, custom-made enclosure (built by the fine Italian craftsman…um…Me!) that is a staggering 70″ long.  She has a small respiratory infection (I believe) because of the temperature changes…but she’s fighting it off nicely as she’s currently basking under her 150watt ceramic heat emitter.  

Ok.  I know it’s a wild turn from my normal posts.  My grandpa calls me “Crazy”… but there just isn’t anything like the feeling you get when a lizard gives you that cock-eyed stare of love.  ahh… my heart is full.   

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~ by chencenter on March 4, 2008.

10 Responses to “Enter The Dragon”

  1. Congratulations, papa!

  2. If all it takes is a 4 inch reptile to fill your heart then you are truly blessed, LOL…

    Enjoy!

    🙂

  3. Katie Blink Joyce? Congratulations

  4. aww:)

    haha i always wanted a lizard, but i think my dad was a little creeped out by the idea of his daughter wanting a reptile as a pet…i was never quite sure why…hahaha:)

    but thats a pretty cool name she’s got there! lol

  5. nice,
    The middle picture is really good.

  6. thanks guys!

    caitlin- one day when you’ve got a place of your own… you can slowly build up a zoo! That’s what I’m doing. I’ve got both a 70gallon tank, 33 gallon fish aquarium and a 100 gallon pond (in a condo!) 🙂

    richard- thanks my friend. it’s jenny’s favorite to. she calls it “the loving father gaze.”

  7. Perhaps you know you have love in your heart when you can love something like that. I mean, anyone can love a cute retriever. 🙂

  8. umm, how can you fit all that in there?? hahaha
    100 gallon pond in your condo?? hahaha

    well, it seems like a good idea:) lol

  9. Erik- haha. I’d like a retriever too. I think my heart is big enough for both. 🙂

    Caitlin- I just get these wild, crazy ideas and I just find a way to make it work! My 100gal. pond has a Michael-made waterfall that circulates water to the pond. I have it built flush against the wall, so it appears that my condo is attached to a mountain stream. hehe. Don’t look at me like that. j/k 😛

  10. haha, oh my gosh!
    that’s really cool:) but how did you figure out how to get that to work? lol

    if it were me, all the water from the pond would most likely end up in someone else’s condo:D hahaha

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