(Cleaning the Little Penguin Back Enclosure;  I cannot describe the smell. The Penguins don’t seem to be fazed…It’s just how it is. Of course I was attempting to “Feng Shui” the rocks. Their enclosure is now incredibly cleaner than their environment would be in the wild.)

1. If you get a chance to sit down, do so.

2. Don’t forget to go to the bathroom; it might be your only chance to sit down.

3. If there is an elevator, use it. If there is a destination short-cut, take it.

4. If you have a cart you can use instead of carrying something, use the cart.

5. Don’t worry about how you smell; everyone at your House smells as much as you do and they simply don’t notice how really rank you are. Unless of course you run across someone who works with a different animal at a different House. Then, they notice your “fishiness”, and you notice that they smell like elephant poop.

6. Give up worrying about your boots. They are going to look like crap no matter what you do.

7. If you aren’t wet and if your shoes aren’t filthy, you aren’t working. Don’t feel embarrassed if you accidentally nail yourself in the face or the crotch with the spray from your hose when it’s going full blast; everyone’s done it.

8. As Eric told me, “The fun and games don’t really begin until you’ve been nailed in the crotch by the beak of a 3-foot tall King Penguin.”

9. If you plan on cleaning the Lorikeet Exhibit, plan on getting crapped on. (Lorikeets squirt poop out horizontally and will nail you in the ear if you’re not careful. It rains poop in there, but they are gorgeous, funny little guys.)

10. Other talents, like knowing how to plunge a drain always come in handy; even if it’s at a Zoo.

11. The person that invents and markets parachute nylon fast-drying underwear will win the devotion and love of every Keeper in the world. My rear-end has been cold and wet for a week now.

These are just some observations from the latest Rookie at the Bird House at the Cincinnati Zoo. I’m not a Professional, but I’ve been wet enough and smelly enough to play one on T.V.

Thanks for stopping by.

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