15
Oct
10

the redundancy of roosters

Yesterday I came upon two roosters tangled in electric netting. I never turn it on anymore–a good thing–but the situation was grisly even so.

They had been fighting, that leaping and kicking thing. One bird kicked the other into the netting. The attacker got his legs tangled, the attackee somehow got his head through a hole in the grid. There was a good deal of blood around the neck and head of both birds. They kept fighting for some time by the look of it!

By the time I came on the scene they were both spent, panting and bleeding. I tried untangling the wire, but their struggles to free themselves had tightened the tourniquet to an impossible place. I was loathe to cut the fence to free them. It was a hundred dollar fence, and the roosters themselves were worth less than nothing. No value, no function, save entertainment. (And they ARE fun to watch. Our friends Zoe and Mike coined it: “Chicken TV.” Really. You’d be surprised.)

I imagine a real farmer would have taken a tin snips to the birds, not the fence. But I am soft.

This is not one of those stories about how the worst things happen to me. Rather I think the motto should be, when it comes to farming, at least the halfassed way I do it, is “Dang, I didn’t see that coming.”

My agrarian woes have been bothersome, but in the scheme of things not catastrophic. No rain for 10 weeks? Just part of the deal. Plan for it. Beehives decimated by small hive beetles, until this year a bit player in the cast of pest players? It happens. Farming is hard.

Today the weather is changing. The wind’s howling would have meant a serious storm on its way just a few weeks ago. Now it’s just a typical autumn breeze. The washing is flapping hard on the clothesline. The sun is still warm, but as of today no longer quite balances the cool of the wind.  I think of the twins, who are having a pumpkin patch excursion at school today. Did I dress them warmly enough?

Just took a walk among the cows, checking udders, hooves, and reproductive equipment. They are mostly all big and healthy, and I think I am more prepared than I have  been for winter. But that is not saying much.

Today my New York friends will arrive for their annual Kentucky golf outing.

For seven years now, I have picked up my guests at the Lexington airport, usually on the late Friday flight. Dennis, Dave, and Richard appearing feet first at the top of the arrivals stairs. Always grinning and laughing about something, usually some crazy Campbell riff. This year, of course, will be different, as Campbell will not be there. I really can’t imagine what that will be like.

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3 Responses to “the redundancy of roosters”


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