Tag Archives: Chickens

The mysterious Kansas parrot fetish

Reminds me a bit of a 1950s song, "Poor Little Robin," "Walkin' walkin' walkin to Missouri."  But this ain't a robin.

Reminds me a bit of a 1950s song, “Poor Little Robin,” “Walkin’ walkin’ walkin to Missouri.” But this ain’t a robin.

Hi readers.  I dunno.  The Kansas State Bird is the Western Meadowlark.  Don’t even bother suggesting that’s what it’s all about.

But all over Kansas City and the surrounding area a person will see that damned cartoon character parrot.  Bumperstickers, flags in yards, even on gravestones.

Occasionally a person will see the word, “Jayhawk” associated with the damned parrot.  A jayhawk isn’t, I believe, an actual bird, so much as a Civil War pejorative used by people with long memories referring to the Kansas-version of the Missouri ‘bushwhackers’.  Irregulars, citizen soldiers using the excuse of war and hatred to rape loot and plunder anyone who disagreed with them.

I don’t think this is a jayhawk.  I think it’s a hell-of-a-lot more likely it’s a damned robin walking to Missouri, and the people displaying it aren’t happy with gasoline being so much cheaper just across the State boundary.

But what the hell do I know?

Old Jules

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Chicken Poems

Good morning readers.  Thanks for coming by for a read.

The C*ckfight post got me thinking it’s time for putting up a few chicken poems.  These are from the Y2k flock, so enough time’s passed to allow me to post them without violating any confidences.  They’re almost surely all dead and gone from the stewpots of history.

El Palenque
El Palenque doesn’t think;
Knows and loves
His only job
And does it;
Perfection without compromise.
Reality
Where owls, hawks
And sly coyotes salivate
Reduced
To lowest common denominator
When the cackling hen
Rises from a fresh-laid egg.

Gallo del Cielo
Gallo del Cielo
Looks at God
Before he dies
Weeps
For eggs
Unlaid
From Araucana
Hens.

Red Tail Hawk

Raptor eye
Picks the kindred soul
Of silky bantam
From the flock

Rosencrantz
(A buff-crested Polish)

False dawn
Full moon
Morning.
Treetop cries
Of Rosencrantz
And Guildenstern
Deceived by
Counterfeit
Light
And sound
Misty memories
Of owl dreams

Old Jules

Running from the law: The Great Cockfight Bust, or The Great C*ckfight Bust

El Palenque2

Hi readers.   Thanks for coming by for a read.  Those of you who have any morals and are offended by the alternative name for the male chicken will be soothed to see I’ve name this twice to avoid criticism.

Must have been 1996, 1997, I was living in Socorro, NM, and I got wind there was a major cock [c*ck] fight going to happen Saturday night.  They happened a few times a month in that area, and though official NM law allowed it as a local option at the time, murmurings in the State House rumored it was going to be prohibited soon.  They’d raided a couple of them in counties where the local option had people thinking it was legal.

Anyway, Saturday night I was at loose ends so I headed out to put hero roosters into my body of life experience.  The place was a mile beyond a gate and down a dirt road into the Rio Grande bosque.  The salt cedars opened up to a large cleared area of several acres with a large metal building toward the back.  Room to park 200 vehicles or more.

I got there early to look things over, still some daylight.  Maybe 20-30 cars and pickups in the lot, guys hanging around talking and smoking outside.  Moseyed into the barn, looked over the seating arrangements, looked a lot like an auction barn for livestock.  But with a cage blocked off in the center for the fighters and their handlers.

Nobody was in a hurry to go inside because it was hot in that barn.  I decided it would be hotter when the place filled up, so I staked a standing-up claim against the support for a tall sliding metal door at the back. 

When the place filled it was noisy, it was hot, and things were happening fast.  Bets, chickens, arms waving and yelling, every reason to be enamored of my place at the door.

But toward the shank of the evening a horn honked out in the parking lot and someone yelled, “Raid!  Cops!”  Sirens blaring, suddenly everyone inside stampeding for the doors.  I ran to the corner of the building and saw the parking lot was filled with flashing lightbars, half-dozen, maybe a dozen police cars.  Sheeze.  This is bullshit!  Guys running out toward their cars getting snagged by the cops.

So I ran like hell out into the bosque dodging salt cedars, rattlers, just put as much distance between myself and that barn as I could manage.  When I went knee deep in mud I knew I wasn’t going any further.  The Rio Grande was right in here somewhere close.

I tucked myself in next to a dead tree in a thicket of salt cedar and watched the lights through the trees, listened to the angry yells of men being arrested, watched the lights threading through the cedars chasing people trying to get away too late.  Waited, waited, felt ticks crawling all over me, found myself wondering about the rattlers, waited, more ticks, waited.

Gradually things calmed down, engines started, gradually the sirens stopped.  Things got really quiet.  But no way I was about to be fooled by that crap.  Full dark, I waited, listened.  Ticks by the hundreds crawling around on me.  Waited, caught myself dozing, jerked myself awake and waited some more.

Finally Old Sol began crawling in, me praying him up.  Still quiet except for the sounds of the morning birds and water rustling down the channel.  I carefully, carefully began working my way through the salt cedars toward the parking area.

I squatted and watched peeking out there as light filled the parking area.  There it was.  My old Mitzubishi Montero and a scattering of other vehicles.  Sitting there trying to lure me to jail.  I scratched and watched.

Finally a guy came creeping out of the bosque maybe 50 yards away, creeping toward a pickup the other side of the Montero.   Heeheehee.  Bait.  Now we’ll see where the law’s hiding.  Glad it ain’t me!

He seemed surprised.  Got into his truck, started it, no sign of the fuzz.  Spun around and vanished in a trail of dust back toward the pavement.

Hmmmm.  Hokay.  I stood up straight, Tried to act like I was just a normal guy coming out of those salt cedars.  Wandered over to the Montero and watched a dozen other guys coming out of the trees.  Cranked up the Mitzubishi and tooled home free as a bird.

The paper was full of it, the Socorro Chieftain, the Albuquerque Journal.  Printed the names of all those guys who got busted.

Served them right, too, going out there watching c*ckfights.

If people don’t have ethics and morals enough to stay away from places like that they need to be in jail.

Old Jules

The Smallpox People Project

The Whale and Dolphin People Project got me talking it over with the topcat around here.

http://thewhaleanddolphinpeopleproject.org/

Me:  So, Hydrox, what’s your thinking on this thing of trying to save dolphins and whales by making people of them?

HydroxDoes it concern you at all that if dolphins and whales began behaving like humans there wouldn’t be room in the oceans for any other species?

Me:  Hell Hydrox.  You know better than that.  They’d starve.

Hydrox:  Think about it a minute now.  Try the perspective of a domestic cat.  Back earlier than I can recall you cut my chorizos off so’s I wouldn’t be a part of what human beings think of as a cat-over population-problem.  Same with the rest of that litter.  When you protected all those chickens, both back in Y2K, and later here, killing coons, coyotes, skunks, you got an over-population problem.  Meanwhile you humans, during my own feline lifetime, have possibly doubled your population.  Does that tell you anything?

Me:  I think I see where you’re going with this.  What you aren’t taking into account is that we value human life.  We don’t believe in going around cutting the nuts off human beings and clipping the whatchallits of our females.  We rely on disease, war, hunger and other natural causes to keep our population down.

Hydrox:  Does it occur to you that the natural forces aren’t doing the job?  That the reason dolphins and whales need to be made into people so you can’t kill them legally might be going backward into the problem instead of approaching it head-on?  For instance, if you really want to save those whales protecting them from humans by calling them humans would be a lot less likely to actually save them than calling Bubonic, Ebola, Cholera and whatever other disease you can invent ‘people’ and protecting them.  Get rid of all those damned shots and pills and the whales will do fine just being whales. 

Me:  You’re saying …. hmm.  You’re saying make diseases PEOPLE?

Hydrox:  Actually I’m not.  If you change the wording around a bit you’ll see what I’m saying about what’s a disease.  Heck, if you could just find a disease that would kill off heart surgeons and fast food workers you could take care of a huge part of the problems of dolphins and whales through starvation and heart failures.  Whale and dolphin people my ass!  Tell those folks they’re human, convince them of it, and they’ll be beaching themselves into extinction!  Maybe that’s already what’s causing them to beach themselves to death.  Someone told them they’re people and they believed it. 

Me:  Seems to me we’ve got a failure here somewhere, to communicate.

Old Jules

The illusion of progress

Escape route 2.51Good morning readers. Thanks for coming by for a read this morning.

Old Sol’s having to fight his way through a lot of haze this morning.   The residue of patriotic zeal, most likely.  I’m not seeing it in the western sky, so I’m guessing someone between here and Harper managed to set the world on fire with a Chinese firework, or Chinese-manufactured US flag waving in the wrong dry grass.  But the Far Departments in this part of Texas know how to deal with such things and likely they’re used to them.

Incidently, for those interested, the Invader Cat turns out not to be defunct.  Re-emerged a couple of days ago l0oking sleek and fat, minus the damaged eye and skull on that side.  Treating himself as though he’s part of the program here.

Meanwhile, Tabby’s still refusing to enter the RV, though she’s being sociable enough, otherwise.  I picked up some more un-flavored Chinese sardines at Dollar Tree in Kerrville early in the week figuring to try luring her into accustoming herself to it.  If that doesn’t succeed, I’ll have to resort to starvation as the next instrument of persuasion.

It’s time I began feeding them all in there, anyway, if only to encourage the Invader Cat to go back where it is someone’s feeding him.

Went to the laundry in Kerrville while I was in town, which was novel and uplifting.  Nice way to get clothes clean, when you think about it.  Sat around in there watching the odor of unwashed clothing being replaced by a white tornado turned sideways.  Listened to people discuss how hot it is, how dry it is, and got a bit of reading done.

Went around to the various oil-change and lube people and found the ones with the best deals for oil changes and lubes at the moment have doors too low to allow the RV inside.  Even WalMart.  But there are a couple of the QuickLube, JiffyLube types of places I haven’t tried yet.

Before I left here I loaded up the RV with belongings to be taken to storage in Harper, which is the illusion of progress I mentioned at the beginning.  I’ll have a number more of those trips before I hit the road.

Swung by one of the side streets lured by a sign, “FRESH PEACHES” while I was in Harper and ended talking chickens to the lady selling them.  Nice coming across someone who likes chickens as much as I do.

There’s an old RV behind a house near Harper about the same vintage as this one, looks as though it hasn’t been moved in years.  I looked at it through binoculars to see whether the ladder was intact [the one on this one’s going to have to be replaced], then knocked a while at the door.  Finally left a note asking whether they’d be interested in selling the ladder.

If they get back in touch with me there’s another item or two I might also be able to buy off that one…. another piece of the illusion of progress.

But sometimes progress manages to be just marching in place.  I’m hearing from Rich and Jeanne that the hot and dry out west is severe enough to justify stalling until something breaks with the heat and moisture.  New Mexico and Arizona are either in the process of burning, or getting ready to burn.  I’m not crazy about putting the kinds of stresses on the tires and drive-train going across pavement hot enough to fry an egg on will provide.

Maybe in a few weeks it will be more inviting.

Old Jules

Humpty Dumptytime

Hi readers.  Thanks for coming around.  I’m hoping you’re all getting your ducks in a row to put whatever lousy issues you’ve got to rest, come midnight.  Beginning one minute afterward we’ve all got to start the serious business of trying to live with all that behind us.  The Coincidence Coordinators have a lot in store for each of us and they don’t want any of it getting bogged down in tanglefootedness left over from yesteryear.

Some of you probably remember that bottle of Jack Daniels Black Label,

Juggling the Possibilities.

 I wrote about it November 17, 2011,

“I finished off most of this bottle of Jack Daniels on December 31, 1999, while I was sitting around listening on the short wave radio to Y2K not happening, first in New Zealand, then Australia, then places further west until it got to me, where it happened well enough to make up for those other places it didn’t.

“But as you can see, there was some left in the bottle when Y2K got to me.  I resolved to hold it back until something else happened.  I’ve had it sitting over there on the microwave collecting dust for several years, threatening to celebrate various New Year and Thanksgivings and I-don’t-know-whatalls.  I’d had it in the back of my mind lately I’d do my 70th birthday with it, then slid the clock backward and thought maybe my 69th here in a few days.”

Fact is, that bottle qualifies as an open container.  I can’t travel with it in the RV.  So this evening I’m going to put on some good music and sip that Jack Daniels to death celebrating all the Humpty Dumpties in my 2012.

The Great Speckled Bird: Respecting our Betters

The Great Speckled Bird went off maybe in July to wherever chickens go when they die, and later in the year I Humpty Dumptied my contracts with the hens and other roosters.  [Sip anticipated] 

I terminated my contract with Shiva The Cow Cat.  [Sip anticipated]

There’s this:

Roof and Chimney Leaks — White Trash Repairs

But we didn’t reach a consensus, the felines etc. on the matter of roof repairs and leaks.  Shiva the cow-cat argues, “What the hell!  Here’s a perfect spot for both those indoor cats in a thunderstorm.  What’s the big deal?  If they don’t like it throw them outdoors with Tabby and me.

I’m sick and tired of all the age discrimination around here in favor of geriatric cats.” [Sip anticipated]

And of course, the Humpty Dumpty trees. [Sip anticipated]

Men's ThermoPlus Extreme Boot Liner

http://www.sorel.com/Men%27s-ThermoPlus-Extreme-Boot-Liner/NU1490,default,pd.html

I’ve used my Sorel boot liners several years as thermal house shoes when it’s cold, and they’ve begun to fray.  Looked up the price of replacing them and discovered it’s $45, so I went to work on the seams and edges with super glue.

No Humpty Dumpty for them.  But I’ll sip to them anyway if there’s any left.

As for Shiva, she’s doing well up there, happy.  Jeanne and I have a ritual of talking on the phone, speaker phone on on her end.  Shiva sits on her shoulder, purrs, slobbers, and rubs her face against the phone.

I’ll sip to a happy ending, a new adventure, and the three remaining felines with active contracts.

And wish things equally good for you.  [Final sip]

Old Jules

Silky Rooster’s Been Raptured Out

I told you that silky rooster was intelligent, but I thought he’d outsmarted himself by getting loose and left behind here.  All those hens he came up with as a chick, the surviving rooster.  Kay’s hens and rooster.  All now joined with a free ranging flock somewhere else.

And he was sorely depressed being alone here.

But he must have known faith would see him through.  A lady down the road with 17 hens and no roosters emailed me after I listed him on Kerrville FreeCycle.  We arranged to meet yesterday at a pullover midway between her and me.

“What a beautiful rooster!”  He preened.

What’s his name?”

I’ve never given him a name.”  She scowled and stroked him.

I always name my chickens.”  Attractive pucker.

To which Mr. NoName Silky replied, “I’ve been to the wild wood, mither.  Mak my bed soon.”

All’s well that ends well.

Old Jules