The Rooster I did not Want
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Remember the chicken coop I didn’t want? Well, do you remember the part about it coming with two chickens and a rooster?
A rooster that I did NOT WANT AT ALL COSTS?
We’ve got a rooster now. Greg has taken to naming our animals – and against my will, named them after burnt out celebrities. We’ve got: Goldie Hen, Kate Hensen (Goldie’s daughter who was taken from us by a coyote (may she rest in peace)), Lady Gray, who is not a celebrity, but is very regal, and Jennifer Chickensten (okay she might not be such a burnt out celebrity, but she’s over Brad and that’s all that matters).
Anyways, Greg took it upon himself to name the rooster I did not want, thus making him a part of the family. Arnold Roostenegger. And his lovely wife – Maria Shriver, along with the Mistress Hen (disclaimer – I absolutely do not approve of that name, but boys will be boys).
Over Christmas dinner, Greg’s uncle (the one who gave us the rooster, his two hens, and coop) suggested that if I did not want the rooster, I should consider making a nice roast out of him. He said, “he’s a young rooster, and would make an excellent supper.”
A few days after planting that seed, I decided he might be right. Ya know, I really didn’t want a rooster, and to use him to better our family would only be the right thing to do. So I decided, Arnold would become dinner.
This might seem terribly horrific to you, but if you eat chicken, then please try to bear with me on this subject. Our food comes from somewhere, right? This happens to be the less glamorous side of ranching.
After my decision had been made, Greg got everything ready to go, while I spent a good 15 minutes looking myself in the mirror convincing myself that being a chicken murderer wasn’t that bad, I’ve been eating chicken all my life, haven’t I?
So I pulled my muck boots on, and headed out to net Arnold. Greg was busy preparing everything, so I spent some time in the coop chatting with my girls, avoiding eye contact with Arnold.
At one point or another, he caught my attention. I gave him a sad look and let him know, it wasn’t personal… Or was it? The last time I saw him mount Lady Gray was actually the last straw.
So I grabbed the net, ready to go. Greg walked towards me with the shears and it was in that moment that I swear Arnold said he wasn’t ready, and I looked down at my other girls and wondered if they would never forgive me for taking their man away from them. I also wondered if they’d remember me as the one who took their friend away, or if they’d remember the scene of the crime. It was all too much for me.
Greg stepped up to the coop and asked me why Arnold wasn’t in the net? My only reply?
“I looked into his eyes…”
The truth of the matter is that I desperately want my chickens to be my friends. Even if that means becoming a vegetarian (yes, I just said that). Whenever I tell people around here that my chickens are friends not food, they look at me as if I am a city girl. Well, maybe I am. So be it.
I would never want my chickens to remember the scene of Arnold becoming dinner, and even though I did not want him, he has become part of the family. So with that, I leave you with this: if you’re wondering how a city girl butchers a rooster in the country. She doesn’t.