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I Did the Funky Chicken

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Surely you recall that dreadful dance, Dear Reader? The funky chicken dance had to be devised by someone who was blotto, flapping arms and waddling legs an evidence of too much Everclear. Or Jack Daniels. All I’m saying is that grain alcohol had to be involved.

It is a dance that is beneath me. I have always been too hoity-toity to do it.

Until yesterday. I was slaving away at my desk and happened to look out my window. Behold! My urban back yard contained……live poultry. Squawking poulet. A FREAKING CHICKEN.

I’ve already squealed on my neighbors to all of cyberspace about their possibly illegal city-slicker hens. As long as they give me fresh eggs to keep me quiet, I don’t care WHAT they’re doing in their back yard.

But, that was before I discovered that chicken can fly. Or, they like to climb things, like my fence. I didn’t realize they became curious about their surrounding area and would decide to go exploring.

Once I saw the stupid bird, I couldn’t forget it. I tried to shoo it back to its own domain, flapping my arms and waddling my legs in tune with its ever-thrusting head. It looked at me like I had lost my marbles and tried to peck my foot, sending me screaming around the yard in a high lather of panic. “Who’s the chicken now?” it seemed to taunt me when I ran into the house and slammed and locked the door.

It was still OUT THERE, though, in the yard. Milling around and pecking things and generally harassing me. I had to GET RID OF IT. So, I did the only thing I could think of: I asked my friends on Facebook and Twitter how to catch a chicken. It was less mortifying than calling 911. Scads of ‘helpful’ commentary poured forth from my friends.

Bethany Vozel: Link sneaks up behind them and picks them up and throws them. (Great. Link wasn’t here.)
Brian PJ Cronin: Throw a towel over them. It confuses them for long enough that you can scoop them up. (But, what if it poops on the towel? Or on ME?)
Brett Myers: lol….. (Well, I’m glad SOMEBODY was laughing at my predicament.)
Karen Snyder: Ya’ gotta be quick. (I cannot be quick in a pink silk frock. Ain’t happening.)
Lou Mello: First, you have to cross the road. (Ah, Lou. You know me so well. You knew the only thing I would be capable of was RUNNING AWAY.)
Ginger Crawford Phillips: Where is that, in your backyard? Put out some scratch, or old veggies, oatmeal, something. Drop it out about 10 feet from you, then, a few feet closer to you, until it is right under your feet, then slowly pick her up. (The chicken already tried to EAT MY FOOT. I am not putting food next to any part of myself, thank you very much.)
Jackie Ng: Cuddle it. (Ew. EW. EWWWWWWWWWWW.)

Pretty much all of these comments have a common theme: the assumption that I will touch an actual live chicken. The very thought of having to touch the mangy thing caused me to have nightmares. I was fully awake, so I guess that means I hallucinated the Behemoth Bird Being. My ridiculous phobias left me with no choice. I had to call out the big guns.

Thank God, I slathered paint on my face yesterday.

I went outside and did my best impression of Southern Damsel in Heaps of Distress. My production caught the attention of one of the workers next door. He dropped everything he was doing and rushed over to rescue me from the Hideous Chicken Monster.

I don’t care that he called me a chicken over his shoulder as he walked away.

Too Much is Too Much: Live Chickens in my Back Yard

33 Comments Post a comment
  1. We need video of the Queen A Chicken Dance, perhaps a little reenactment today with midget wrens as stand-ins for the real chicken so you won’t be so afraid. What time would you like @carnelllm to be there since he is the only techie guy I know who could pull it off.

    August 17, 2011
    • I really wish I had those green sunglasses, Lou. It would’ve made the whole thing so much better.

      Thank God no video exists.

      August 17, 2011
    • The video made me laugh, thanks Lou. Priceless.

      August 17, 2011
  2. So why did you actually care that it was out there? How was it offending you? What did this poor thing do to you, other than the fact that it existed? Was it eating your plants? Driving your car? making eyes at your man?

    In other words dear friend,it was a chicken!

    August 17, 2011
    • I was worried about it. What if it flew into the street, and some drunken college student splatted it all over the place with a car, and I had to live the rest of my life with the knowledge that I participated in killing it? Not to mention having to look at its mangled carcass. Ick.

      August 17, 2011
  3. I have to agree with Lou, this REQUIRES video. It’s got all the elements – action scene, spunky heroine, cute animal, damsel in distress, even dramatic costumes (pink silk? Gracie will love it)…

    August 17, 2011
    • I cannot possibly recreate this scene again. The first time was too traumatic. Every time I come into my yard now, I look around for that stupid bird.

      August 17, 2011
  4. The only possible response I can think of…

    August 17, 2011
    • I must say the thought of touching the thing did nauseate-ate-ate me. Very funny.

      August 17, 2011
    • This is one of those links that makes me laugh out loud and then feel totally inept at writing anything. On both counts, thank you.

      August 17, 2011
      • 1) Yay!
        2) No, no!

        She has a style that I would give my space bar thumb for, but we have to write with our own vox stylo. Mine includes inventing nonsensical Latin phrases; this one is my gift to you.

        August 17, 2011
      • I love finding new blogs that challenge me. However little I discuss it, this blog is totally a writing project to help me develop and refine a voice. So, I really mean it. Thank you on both counts.

        I was forced to take Latin for 2 or 3 years in high school, so I totally get your made-up Latin phrases. I love them. 🙂

        August 17, 2011
  5. In the words of my older son Nathaniel (when he was 2) “A chicken is a song-birdie!” We played a game to identify all the song birds in the yard…and kinda like “Cows have horns” and we’d name all the songbirds. And his father would say, A Robin is a song-bird; etc. Then we’d throw in the ringer, a chicken. And Nate would get really mad with us and insist: “A chicken is TOO a songbirdie!” And M and I would roll, laughing for hours. To this day, this is a phrase I utter at strange times for no reason (kinda like why the chicken wandered into your yard) and it still makes me laugh!)

    Birds are no respecters of property lines. They’ll be back…to get you! 🙂 Get a net on a stick.

    August 17, 2011
    • Now, every time I see one of the idiot things (there are TWO Behemoth Bird Beings back there), I am going to call it a songbirdie. It won’t make me touch it, but it might make my breathing return to normal.

      August 17, 2011
  6. Ickkkkkk. Ick. Ick. Ickkkkkk. I’m all for love and tenderness and all that, but the only solution in my backwoods country brain was this: shot. gun.

    August 17, 2011
    • Somehow, Tori, I would end up incarcerated for firing a gun in an urban area, and nobody would care about the possibly illegal chickens. Or chicken, since I shot one of them.

      And, I can’t kill anything. I cried when I ran over a squirrel one time. I yell at MTM when he goes fishing. (Yes, I eat meat. MTM doesn’t. Go figure.)

      August 17, 2011
  7. Amber Deutsch #

    I had a few hilarious moments imagining you running in circles for hours trying to catch a dodging, weaving chicken.

    Marshall made a bad joke about catching a chicken bare-breasted, but you have to watch out for their peckers. har.

    In unrelated news, taking inspiration from your past entries, I unfriended someone for the first time on facebook today. Their status was a rant about how absurd and idiotic it is to believe in evolution, and how dare we teach this unfounded theory to children in middle school. Now, they can believe anything they’d like, but I take exception to being called an idiot and moron during my morning facebook break. So, away they go! Yay me.

    August 17, 2011
    • I don’t know why I derive such glee from making people laugh, especially when they are laughing AT ME. I’m glad I cracked up your household this morning.

      Yay you. Name calling is never okay. Unless applied to a chicken.

      August 17, 2011
  8. Rhonda #

    This makes me laugh… only because the kids and I have had to catch our chickens numerous times when they have “flown the coop”. It’s usually a race to catch them before one of the dogs do. A long handled net makes the catch much easier. I’ve used a fishing net for lack of anything better. By the way, your neighbors should clp the flight wings on their birds to prevent them from visiting your yard (or the street) for a while.

    August 17, 2011
    • Rhonda, thanks for this story. Now that a long handled net has been suggested twice, I will have to keep one handy. I’ll make sure to let the neighbors know, too, that they need to clip the wings. These chickens are a little project for their toddler, and it would be a life-long trauma for the poor child to see one of the things dead.

      August 17, 2011
    • As a follow up to this comment, Rhonda, I talked to my neighbor this afternoon and told her about the wing clipping. She didn’t know they needed to do that, but she does now. So, thanks for that bit of advice from afar.

      August 17, 2011
  9. Did you take that picture with your iPhone or iPad? I only wish I had been there to take video with the iPad of you running helter skelter all around your yard trying to shooo the chicken back over the fence. LOL

    August 17, 2011
    • I took it with the phone. I use the iPad for skyping primarily, not for taking photos. It is much, much easier to skype with the iPad than the iPhone. I can keep my fat head in the screen easier on the iPad. 🙂

      August 17, 2011
  10. Again, I know I have said this before but your story reminds me of the stupid guinea hens my neighbor had. Those things were the birds from hell and thought they owned the neighborhood. LOL

    August 17, 2011
    • I hope these hens don’t turn into those hens. My neighbor told me they both got out last night and roamed the neighborhood.

      August 17, 2011
    • charley #

      james i once lived next door (in a camper, long story) to guinea hens. i was on their regular circuit every day at 6am and 6pm. across my roof. nightmarish…

      August 29, 2012
      • James Moffitt #

        That is funny Charley. We lived next to our landlord who had 8 children and lived in a triple wide trailer. Every morning when I would leave our double wide trailer to go to work the stupid birds would see me and make a beeline towards me quak quakking at the top of their little feathered faces. Most of the time I just had to punt one or two of them off of me. I think they wanted to kill me and make me a day long buffet. Then one day one of them made the mistake of getting under our Lincoln Towncar. I guess it was going to take out the car. It lost its life. I had to get out of the car, look at the landlord’s children and pretend how sorry I was I ran over the stupid bird.

        August 29, 2012
  11. Andra, once the chickens are back in your neighbor’s yard, have them take regular scissors and trim some of the feathers on one wing back. This throws them off balance when they try to fly over fences and they can’t get more than a foot or so off the ground. Then you don’t have to worry about chickens coming over into your yard anymore.

    October 12, 2011
    • Andrea, I told them to do this to the chickens the first time one of them ‘visited.’ They must not’ve listened, because last week, BOTH of them decided to come over and explore my yard. I hope they clipped them after the latest escape.

      October 12, 2011
  12. charley #

    NO TRESPASSING. next time kill it and eat it…

    August 29, 2012
    • Haha, Charley. I couldn’t kill it for anything. I somehow thought it would kill me. 🙂

      August 29, 2012

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