We're starting to call Abby 'Prince Abner' now... She/He is front and center there.
I go out of my way to order hens (for this flock I drove personally to another city) because my neighbors aren't keen on the crowing. I'm not keen on their dogs, but we've agreed to declare my yard a demilitarized zone. They keep their dogs out of my yard, I don't get roosters.
I have butchered a LOT of chickens in my life. When you grow up Mennonite on a farm, you see*. death*. everywhere*. It's a way of life and I have no problem eating chicken, but as I've gotten older, I've gotten softer. It kills me to have to kill my chickens now, even if they're miserably dying of illness and old age. I love them, wah!!!!
Abs is a beautiful bird, and either she's going to be an Amazonian machine, or he's going to be dinner. This is weighing more and more heavily on my mind every morning, with the crowing... It's been so many years since I've eaten one of my own babies, I'm not sure I can do it anymore.
Roosters are funny thangs. They're actually kind of effeminate the first three months, usually looking more and more like giant klutzes, and you wonder what the crap because you paid top dollar getting them sexed and surely this one isn't having a growth hormone problem, you know? I've seen a lot of weird genetic stuff in chickens, anything is possible. But then the crowing starts... It's like when a boy's voice starts changing, it sounds really weird for awhile and you go, really?, and that's what makes you think it might still be a hen, because hens crowing can sound a little ridiculous. Btw, that doesn't mean they're turning into roosters or going androgynous, it's just a natural bird thing for a tribal leader to clearly state territory proclamations. If there is no rooster, a lead hen sometimes naturally takes over. It's a very important job and must be done correctly, and you can go all Terry Pratchett-y if you dwell on that too long.
Anyway, I've been through this umpteen times, gangly awkward teenager goes giganto and starts irritating everyone, practicing foolishly on old hens who get miffed when an ideal opportunity pops up as they are getting a drink, and next thing you know, Jr. is on his back in the water bowl because he can't keep his balance, and the old lady's head is squashed under the kid ~in the water~, and, well, I'm pretty sure that's where the saying "mad as a wet hen" originated from.
And then the spurs start nubbing out, and boy don't they feel all sassy then, and oh look, legs walking across the yard, *stealthstealthcoolstealth* here he comes, dragging a wing and hopping sideways, then the LEAP, and *whamo*, I block the nidiot with a slick hip move and send him rolling, and he thinks that's so awesome that he comes right back and keeps throwing his body all over me, and dang if he's not trashing my good pants, what was I thinking wearing them in the back yard... My dad got specially bred fighting roosters one year because he thought they'd look pretty walking around the yard, boy was that a joke. You get one of those guys on your head and it's exactly like a cartoon, but with real blood. Nowadays you could impress people saying a zombie nearly got you.
I'm kind of hoping we can wait this one out and see what happens, maybe break out the good camera and have some fun with it. And maybe rename the guy. I'm not crazy about just sliding it over to 'Abner', and I really wanna stick to my tv character theme. Abby was for two Abbies, the one on NCIS, and the one on Primeval. You know what? Today is Wil Wheaton's birthday, I could use one of his characters, like Dr. Isaac Parrish (who is, incidentally, a dick) from Eureka. Or I *could* just name him Wil Wheaton, because technically he played himself on The Big Bang Theory but I hate to do that because later on I'd be saying Yeah, Wil Wheaton got mangled in a dog attack, or Wil Wheaton got hit by a car, or we ate Wil Wheaton for supper last night, and a phrase like that could wind up throwing some kind of horrible cosmic irony at me if me saying that happened to coincide with something terrible actually happening to the guy. I mean, what if a raccoon found a way into the pen and ate Wil Wheaton's brain? And the biggest Prairie Kingsnake Scott ever saw went slithering past the Quackerdome door while it was wide open last spring, easily 4 feet long. You just never know, so that's why I don't name chickens after anyone real, because it sounds bad when you tell someone they died, you know? Kinda bothers my sister to hear someone had a pig named her name but it died, can't say I blame her. She has a cute name that winds up in songs, so I'm not saying it was disturbing to have a pig named after her, ok, this is getting out of hand, you know what I mean. It sounds like a jinx.
Behold, Dr. Isaac Parrish.