The Outsider: Fowl play
|By Will Jones - The Outsider | June 28 2018|
Is it pathetic of me to feel empathy for a chicken? Actually feel sorry for it?
Now, there are those of you out there who are vegetarians and animal rights sympathizers who, when I tell you that the chickens in question are being raised to eat, will think, “of course you can feel sorry for chickens, liberate the chickens, let them fly...”
And, I’ve been there. I was once, in a younger incarnation a veggie, but I strayed (yes, it was the bacon that did it) and today I’m firmly on the dark – preferably pink in the middle – side.
But, despite my now wanton meat eating, I do feel for them. And the thing is, they are my own meat birds. I’m raising them to kill and eat. And they’ll be really tasty. But, at the moment, I feel sorry for them.
As I’m sure you’ll know, our current warmish, somewhat damp summer weather is perfect for the mosquitoes. And, guess what those vile blood sucking bugs like to eat just as much as I do. Chicken. When I go to tuck my chickens in at night, the cloud of mosquitoes is so thick that I spit bugs with every breath and worry that if I torment them too much the tiny bugs might knock me down and come in for the kill. My poor birds sit there, engulfed in this buzzing cloud looking miserable if chickens can do that, occasionally pecking wearily at some of the billion bugs that are vying for places at the plump feathered feeding stations.
I look on, if only for a moment, because the mosquitoes quickly detect that there is more meat from which to siphon the red stuff and advance. But I do look and I feel utterly sorry for my chickens because I will be retreating to the house in a moment while they’ll have to sit through this onslaught all night. No wonder they flap, waddle and squawk like crazed lunatics each morning when I feed them. I’m sorry, poor chickens, I really am. And then there’s the fact that my poor chickens only get to enjoy life for a mere eight weeks. From cute ball of yellow fluff to scrawny red arsed adolescent and finally gloriously plump and fully feathered adult in a short two months. Do you think they realize that they are growing, maturing, nearing death so quickly? Or are they completely preoccupied by eating and scratching at bug bites?
In that respect, my chickens may think it a merciful action when I pick them gently from the flock, cradle them in my arms, carry them carefully out of the coop, and then chop their heads off. I’m sorry chickens. You don’t have the greatest life in the short space of time that you are on this earth. I don’t know whether it does any good, makes you feel better that I admit my guilt and say that I feel sorry for you. I hope it does, really, just in case you understand, but then again, you taste so good. And, I’ve been vegetarian before, and no Luke Skywalker chicken is bringing me back from the dark side.
WILL JONES - is The Outsider