I once toddled down a click bait hole rife with historical death poses. I was fascinated that this was once tradition, to have one photo of a loved one, even if it must be shot in the sleep of death.
This is what I think of now as I tend to a 2nd lame chick in a week: I can understand why so many people prefer to buy their eggs at a convenient market–all squeaky clean in Styrofoam-nestled rows–to what I idealize might’ve been the old-fashioned way (at least in the sort of bucolic neck of the valley where my ancestors put down roots). Theirs was a simpler era filled with letters hand-inked beside oil lamps, novels that addressed you, dear reader, not to mention their sturdy gingham dresses and homemade feminine hygiene solutions.
Imagine if we had to produce every ingredient we put into our cakes and breakfast burritos–so much work! You get to pat yourself on the back, just a little, when you reduce your ecological footprint a tiny skosh via growing your own chicken sanctuary.
Of course, the inner Marxist in me comes out at times like these, with the cost of two chicks, along with their food and bedding adding up, without knowing for sure whether or not they will ever provide a return. They’re months away from laying their first egg, but at times appear a mere breath away from an infinite dirt nap. They may not live long enough to pull their use-value out of the red.
What I’ve learned from my reluctant chick nursing foray: birds fall asleep quite easily when you wrap them in a towel, burrito style; one treatment for constipation is similar to that of the “getting to know you” treatment for an eggbound chicken (just head in the opposite direction); & some dogs can be trained to empathize with chickens (and resist a drool-laden wild urge to devour them all).
On the plus side, Cuckoo has feigned full recovery from her injury to get out of the brooder box and out back with her fellow chickmates. She also tried to viciously kill Lola (shortly after she was added to the hospital brooder yesterday with a backed up butt). Lola’s condition vacillates between comatose and sleepy eyed.
Lola makes a great subject for sleepy death poses and teaching Jesse empathy, but I think Cuckoo had the right idea (she clamped down on her neck hard like a beak-y guillotine). Lola looks like she could use swift mercy. Maybe you just gotta cut your losses and accept that no eggs will ever make it out of that chick’s basket. I’m on the fence; torn between how much longer I can play bedside nurse and how thoughtful that vicious attack of Cuckoo’s now seems to me.