People are fond of fables and lessons we can supposedly learn from the wisdom of animals. But possibly, God gave us some animals as anti-examples, to show us that some things don’t work out or really shouldn’t be tried. Take chickens for example.
All you have to do is consider the idiom of calling someone a “bird brain.” It is the “old” term for “air head” or the “new” term for “ignoramus,” depending on how you look at it. Which all goes to show that there have always been stupid people.
But let’s not get bogged down in that depressing thought. Let’s get back to chickens and things we can learn about how not to behave or how not to make decisions, based on how we see things work out for chickens.
- If you have a worm, don’t announce it by waving it in your mouth and running through the flock. Just quietly eat your worm and be thankful. Any other behavior attracts the have-not-a-worms who will either grab it out of your mouth or chase you until you are distracted and exhausted into dropping it.
- Don’t stick your head through the fencing to avoid going to bed. It is silly to strangle yourself running from that higher being just to avoid sleep… which actually can’t be avoided, so all your struggles are for naught.
- Don’t sneak up and peck the toes of the someone bigger than you. No matter how nice someone is, they have their limits of how much of your shennanigans they can handle before impulsively stomping on you.
- Try to remember where the gate to your coop is. Give mental priority to the things that matter most to prevent unnecessary (and embarrassing) panic on a daily basis.
- When the hawks show up, it’s a good time to be under the grapevine with everyone else. Being an independent loner is not always as poetic as people make it sound….
- When it is 102°F out and water mysteriously rains on you from above, don’t go hide in the hot coop. Learn to appreciate the blessings of the day.
- A pile of 12 chickens fighting for a cool hole in the dirt is probably not cooler than your own spot in the shade. Know when to break free from irrational mob mentality.
- Don’t rush to get the worms while the shovel is still digging. If something looks too good to be true, you might be risking your neck to try to claim it. Or, don’t stick your neck in where it doesn’t belong. A moment for evaluation can go a long way toward long term survival.
It’s not that I don’t love my chickens. I am willing to try to help them as best I can with these issues of theirs. However, life would be easier and we might even have deeper relationships if they would just use their brains. Okay, that’s not fair. They truly are bird brains. I know it every time I look them in the eye. So maybe that is lesson 9:
If you look someone in the eye and they always seem to want to know what you can do for them, proceed with caution. You might not want to invest too much emotion in the relationship. They will either not be lasting long or they will not be a friend you can turn to in your need. They are truly chicken hearted.