eggs



It’s 30 degrees out and the chickens are snug in the coop. Finally. I got home from the DJ (Day Job – it’s been a while since I posted, so I figured I’d refresh your memory) and went outside to lock them up. There isn’t any snow on the ground today and so they got to spend the day outside the pen.

Well, the wind somehow was strong enough to knock the stick that was keeping the door open so they couldn’t go home to roost. They were locked out. Uh oh.

Putting the flashlight through the little coop door – I only saw 2 chickens. Bigger uh oh. Great, the doodles are stuck in NATURE for the night. Dammity damn damn. Stupid wind. Stupid me thinking that the big heavy door would be held open with a little stick and now my doodles would be dodging hawks and owls and coyotes (oh my!) all night.

I speed walked to the other side of the coop (no running – with my stupid luck, I’d trip, fall and break my uvula or something) (one of the most breakable things in the human body. Google it) and there were my girls, all huddled into a mass of feathers, on the ground outside the coop. They were smart and put themselves in a protected spot, sort of under the nest boxes.

Poor things, apparently the door had been shut a while, there were 3 eggs on the ground. So – I deduce the following (hawks and owls and coyotes oh my!).

  1. Wind knocked stick
  2. Door shut with 2 chickens inside while they were laying eggs
  3. It stayed that way all day
  4. My little doodles were trying to do the right thing and put their eggs in the nesting (yeah, somehow that was just auto-corrected to ‘sexting’. Not cool. Had to manually override that little spelling correction. Awesome. Note to future self – you can’t type ‘nesting’ in WordPress, it changes it to ‘sexting.’ Can’t wait to see how many hits this post gets. “Hey, dude, I was looking up sexting the other day, you know, just to like, see, right? and like, there was all this stuff, right? and then there was like this random post about, like chickens and stuff. And like, the wind and like hawks and owls and coyotes and stuff. It was like, so random dude. But now I’m like, hooked man. Yeah, I know. I can’t even explain it. It’s just so random, but like, this chicken chick is so like, I don’t know, like, deep, you know? I totally connected to her on some like, spiritual level or something.”) boxes, but they were closed and couldn’t so they laid their eggs underneath
  5. And probably stressed out all day. So, there I was -no jacket, wearing work clothes, with a flashlight, looking at 13 chickens just laying on the ground and thinking, “F! (I actually thought the entire curse word out.) How the F (full word) am I gonna do THIS?! (Here is where you really wish I were the TRUMAN SHOW because having this process on streaming video would have gone completely viral. Alas, that is not the case, so I shall describe to you what was some of the stranger series of minutes I have ever experienced.)

Wishing I had a headlamp, I took the flashlight and put it between my knees in order to light the area ahead as best I could, and bent down to grab a chicken. Ok, so bear with me here. This is where, well, it gets weird. Apparently, when chickens roost down for the night, they get a bit, (is ‘randy’ a good word or does it make me sound old? Frisky? Something that made me feel glad because I could pick them up and yet, really dirty (as in, icky/uncomfortable) all at the same time.)

As I reached for the first one, she squatted down as if to mate. (So, I just did an image search for “Stance for mating chickens” to see if I could include a photo to give you a visual and now feel like the “you-shouldn’t-be-on-this-earth-you-person-with-strange-fetishes-police” are going to come knocking because I just viewed over 100 photos in the search result, analyzing all the poor chickens getting violated by roosters and determined that none of them were the right kind of position that my chickens were in, so I’ve decided not to include the photo at all, and am now really embarrassed by those last several creepy minutes.) It was all butt up, head down, but made it easy to pick her up.

Oh, you want sexy time, chicken? Nope, IN THE COOP.

However, I couldn’t hold her with only 1 hand, and needed to see, so, with the flashlight between my knees, and a handful of chicken going, “take me I’m yours” I had to waddle, waddle waddle the 3 steps over to the coop door to put her in. The flashlight is sort of swaying back and forth as I do this waddle, lighting up the area quite strangely, like, Blair Witch, but with horny chickens instead of dumb teenagers.

For the first chicken, after placing her in the coop, I took the flashlight out from between my knees, walked the three steps holding it in my hand, put it back between my knees, grabbed another “ready” chicken, turned, waddle, waddle, waddle back to the coop,  and shoved the chicken in (gently, of course, but get the f in there). But, after the first time, it was just stupid, so I just put the flashlight between the knees (thighs actually – ugh – that admission just made it weirder), waddle, waddle, waddle, bend, grab a ready and willing hen, waddle, waddle waddle, put in the coop, waddle waddle waddle, etc.

This happened for 13 of them. I’d go to grab them, and they got all like, “Yes please” which was odd enough. One woke up a bit and hid under the nesting box and as I reached forward, she got into position for, you know, the act, and since I couldn’t reach her, I grabbed her by the tail feathers and sort of dragged her out from under the nesting boxes. Apparently she liked it rough.

AND THEN, as if that wasn’t bad enough, the stupid thigh-light ambiance all low and shadowy and sort of moving weird with the waddling just added another layer of creepiness and, well, low-budget-film to the entire experience.

DO YOU KNOW HOW THIS FEELS? Creepy, strange and now I am wondering how they’ll look at me tomorrow. They’re probably all clucking about it right now.

‘Well Blanche, I thought I was going to get some tonight.’

“Oh I know. I mean, it was the biggest rooster I’ve ever seen. I would have SO loved to get me some of that.” (There is another word for rooster that was so tempting to use right there, yet, I know that would have completely tipped the scales on this post from, “Oh Jenn you are hilarious” to “I’m blocking you.”)

“Henrietta, stop talking like that, you slut. It was extra rough with me, dragging me around by the feathers like a caveman. I don’t want any of that. I have pride, honey.”

“Oh please, you think everything is a rooster wanting to get some.  You squat every time you walk under a tree branch.”

It was a strange night. I can wash my hands after the experience, but not my memories. My memories will haunt me.

ps. There is a cookbook with the same name as this blogpost. You must get it. Very entertaining.

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No one prepared me for the coop phenomenon that is, “Soft eggs.” Basically, the egg was laid before the shell hardened. The first time I found one, I was extremely grossed out. The second time, I found one, I was extremely grossed out. Actually, each time I found one, I was extremely grossed out.

Let me explain. It is like a little breast implant.

Let me explain that too. It is like a little breast implant, if I were to imagine what a breast implant would feel like. Kind of squishy but with a soft casing…Ok, you know what? Let’s stop there. Anyway, where were we before going to Dirty Town? Oh right. Soft eggs and grossed out.

Apparently, this phenomena can occur when the chicken is ill, doesn’t get enough calcium, or if you scare it.

Yes, you read that right. If you scare the shit out of the chicken, you might just scare the egg out of the chicken. That happened to me twice. I would open the nesting box after coming home later than expected and the chickens have gone to roost. I would see a movement. That would be the egg dropping from the roosted hen onto the coop floor. I put enough shavings down that both times, it has landed without breaking. Both times, in the light of the flashlight, I didn’t realize what happened. I just would see an egg and grab it to bring inside. And both times I was extremely grossed out. The first time, I put my fingers right through the shell. Cuz it is soft. Like a b…Nevermind. Anyway, ewww. The second time I picked it up intact and then had to make a decision about what to do with it.

I had done some research when I found the first one. Apparently, you can still eat it. So, I stood there, outside the coop holding the second munchkin implant, and had a small debate with myself.

Me: “Would I really eat this?”
Me: “It’s pretty skeevy.”
Me: “But it’s just an egg.”
Me: “I know, but, how? How would I eat it?”
Me: “I don’t know, I guess scramble it or something.”
Me: “Ok. Give it a try.”

I threw it as far in the woods as I could, gathered the rest of the eggs and went inside. (Yes. I called my own bluff.)

Side note:

We have been baking the scrap egg shells that are left over after cooking and grinding them into tiny bits with a mortar and pestle and putting them in a dish outside for the chickens. The calcium is supposed to help the chickens create stronger shells. They devour it ( which I think is totally weird) and we haven’t seen a soft egg recently, which is good, however, I do find myself pointing out women to Keith on a more frequent basis and asking, “Think those are real?”