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I don't ask for much

Agriculture.com Staff 01/23/2008 @ 9:06am

I don't ask for much.

Really. I get up, go to work, and all I ask is that everyone around me does their share. That's not so much to ask. Just an honest effort -- that's all I want.

Saturday morning it was almost 20 below zero. But I got up, got dressed, and headed out to do chores. Why did I do that? Because I have a work ethic, that’s why. I don't want to let the team down. If only everyone else was as dedicated...

When I got to the chicken coop, you know what I found? Seventeen chickens, just clucking around. Scattered about the coop were four good eggs, three frozen eggs and three broken eggs.

What the hey?

Here's the thing. They're chickens. They have nothing else to do. It's not like me leaving bottled water in the porch where it freezes and breaks. (I forgot the water because I was busy; I had important stuff to do, so get off my back.) Chickens don't have any excuse.

As chickens, eggs are pretty much their whole reason for existence. Actually, if you're a chicken, being asked to produce eggs isn't the worst case scenario. So it seems to me that if you're a chicken, and being an egg producer is the best possible career choice, you really should pay a little more attention to what's going on.

Keep in mind, we have 17 chickens. For whatever reason, they all lay their eggs in the same nest. I'm not sure why, but because I believe in letting employees exercise some initiative, I haven't tried to change their ways. Let's do the math. This time of year, the chickens sleep about twelve hours a day. Therefore, it would be no bother for one chicken to sit on all the eggs throughout the night. No doubt it's a little lumpier bed than I'd choose, but then, I'm not a chicken. Anyway, that leaves 12 hours of nest duty to split among 16 chickens, all of whom had the entire night off. That's only 45 minutes per chicken.

So say you're a chicken. You wake up, cluck, have a drink of water, peck up a little chicken feed, scratch around on the floor, repeat, and in the afternoon maybe groom your tail feathers. I would think that 45 minutes sitting on a nest full of eggs would be rewarding, something to look forward to, maybe even use as a line on your resume. It would be fulfilling -- a chance to contribute to society. You'd think that even chickens would need some sort of self-esteem.

But noooooo! I open the door of the chicken coop and there lay the eggs -- cold and neglected. When I make a sound of disgust, all the chickens look up and say things like "Oh, Gertrude, weren't you supposed to be watching the eggs?" and Gertrude or Annabel or Louise flutter around trying to look contrite. Their performance might be a little easier to believe if they didn't wander over and peck up a few morsels of frozen egg white.

That's just tacky.

Oh well. In this world, all you can do is control your own actions and try to reconcile yourself to the shortcomings of others. I'll keep my end of the bargain -- food, water, and shelter -- and I'll just hope the chickens do better at theirs.

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Too Funny, thank you!! :) 10/11/2012 @ 11:46am I also have some "contrite" chickens now. Since these are my first chickens ever I am just amazed at all of their little behaviors and personalities. Thank you for your very amusing and clever story you made my day. :D

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