Apparently The Winter of Our Discontent was not satisfied with taking my dog, my best human friend, my car, and my sanity, because I came home from a shittastic double-shift day at work to find my cockatiel enshrined in a cardboard casket. She'd grown cranky over the past few months, and was puffed up looking especially dour yesterday. Since Carmageddon 2014 had taken all of our money an avian vet was out of the question (and really I think she'd been drifting toward a natural death anyway--trying to transport her might've just hastened things, especially in this weather), so all I could do was pet her a lot, crank the heat up, and warn Hotter that she looked like she was about done.
MFA Birdie was with me before Little Child was conceived, and survived The XY (who is terrified of birds) failing to feed her while I was in the hospital with Little Child numerous times during his infancy, four moves, and the loss of her tail at one point to The XY while I was out of town (she got him back, too, biting his finger and drawing blood for the only time in her life). She loved her food dish (and humped it daily), scritches on the nape of her neck, honey seed sticks, and, eventually, Hotter (I thought she hated all men but it turns out she just hated the XY; we had that in common). Her brain may have been the size of a lentil, but she had more heart than most people I know.
RIP, MFA Birdie. You were a good little friend.
2014 can pretty much go to hell as far as I'm concerned.