Archive | 3:51 pm

I really really really want chickens

13 Jul

I grew up with chickens. My parents had chooks when I was growing up and I collected eggs as a part-time job during my uni days, where I once heard a chicken speak.

I couldn’t actually identify which one of them said “hello”, but I played it safe and rescued all chickens from the surrounding cages. I took them home to free range until I narrowed down the talker and made squillions from exhibiting her on Oprah.

Bloody chook never spoke another word.

I never really appreciated my feathered friends. It’s only now, trying to deal with kitchen and garden waste that I truly see them for the wonders they are.

For my kitchen scraps I am using a bokashi bucket, which is wonderful for processing large quantities of kitchen waste quickly and odour-free. I’m having trouble though with the sheer quantity of organic waste that my veggie garden produces, both in terms of weeds and veggie off-cuts.

A broccoli, for example, produces both a thick stalk and a plethora of surrounding leaves for every tight green head. My globe artichokes need their outer fronds plucked regularly to prevent them taking over the world. All these scraps won’t fit in my humble compost tumbler, and it’s really only designed for grass clippings and leaves anyway.

I need a solution, and preferably one that clucks.

My problem is P. He swears that they will smell, and that it’s a bad idea. He wants to get the kids a guinea pig instead. A flipping guinea pig! What good did a guinea pig ever do for anyone outside of Ecuador?

I’ve even resorted to asking J whether she would like a chicken. The problems is that I’m not one to shy away from life’s realities, so I’ve explained to her that when we eat chicken, a chicken has to die.

L: Hey J, would you like to get a chicken?

J: “I’d like to kill a chicken”.

L: “No, as a pet”

J: “I’d like to kill a chicken, because I like to eat chicken”.

L: “This would be a chicken that would lay eggs for us – we wouldn’t kill it”.

J: “I’m actually allergic to chickens”.

Preschoolers!  She was no help at all.

So I’m going to have to come up with a plan to convince him, and based on what works for J, harping on in an amusing way seems to be my best bet.

Luckily, there have been a few articles on backyard chooks in the gardening magazines I’ve bought lately, so I’m going to cut them out and leave them in various places where he’ll find them.

I’ve planted some m&ms in the fridge, which are an absolute certain, and this little chookie below is going in the top drawer of this bedside table. If I keep it up long enough, he’s sure to agree, right?