Saturday, July 10, 2004

It was a battle of speed. It was a battle of agility. It was a battle of wit. Usually when I moonlight for the catering company, it's in the late afternoons and evenings. Today, however, a nice, quiet librarian and her fiance were getting married at an equally nice and quiet, retrofitted barn a ways out of town. So I showed up to work at 8. Ugh. Hard after a late night. And the barn was pretty rustic. Located on a beautiful plateau which housed an entire farm. And next to the barn: the chicken coupe. Well, not so much a coupe as a pen. There was no top on the pen. Although one chicken eyed me wearily, most made no threatening moves and I went along with all the preparations that needed to be completed. Nearly 2 hours later it was time for the ceremony to begin in the gazebo just outside the barn. Everything was set, the guests were seated and the bride and groom were moments from walking down the aisle. That's when I saw him. That mother fucker. The chicken that had his eye on me all morning. First, he cocked his head sideways, gave me a smile the nest a chicken could, a made a bounding leap for a branch that had fallen just below the top of the fence. His foot connected with the branch, teetered for a moment and as soon as he found his footing he was out of the pen like a bolt of lightening. Standing there, pitchers in hand, I knew we were in for trouble. I dropped the pitchers and bolted. I'm fast, but the chicken had clearly done this before. He blasted, wings flapping, straight to the barn door and proceeded, in no indirect fashion, straight towards the weeding party. "NOOOOO" I yelled as I broke left, broke right and tried to block the exit. I beat him to the door. A mexican standoff. How could he get through? Between my legs? Oh no. How about a line-drive full-flapping chest shot. Ugh. The chicken was by me before I could even raise my hand to cover my face.

Oh no! The wedding. The guitarist strummed the first few chords. I whirled around on the balls of my feet, feathers still floating to the ground from our encounter. One last chance before he was home free running amuck through the gazebo. I did what any man who relies largely on gratuities would have done. Left foot plant, right foot plant and a diving Superman leap, arms outstretched to grab him. Hell, I would crush him for all I cared at that point. As I flew through the air I considered my options. Land on the chicken, grab the chicken, completely miss or duck and roll. I bellyflopped to the ground with a thud. No more than 3 inches away from the brat. Oh god. In a final act of desperation I summoned my remaining strength to lunge, like a coiled spring, for one last chance. "bagooooock!" I had him by the leg. Hold on, I told myself, hold on. MY right hand came around and ensnared his body which was mow in view of at least half the guests. Scoop, 30 seconds later he was back in his pen. Another wedding saved care of your neighborhood catering spectaculo-man. Haven't seen the tip yet but the story was payment enough.

On a totally unrelated note, I had heard about how Bush's payment records were mysteriously "lost" but I didn't hear the the real story of one man who attests to having seen some of Bush's records thrown away at the request of his campaign manager. This all brought to light by Tony P's Busblog. That's why the busblog is world famous. And the truth blog is just telling stories about guys chasing chickens.

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