It must be the week. Told our daughter Rachel about renting chickens--article in N.Y. Times about imaginative entrepeurneurs in Michigan and Illinois.
No chance for me to do it in retirement place where we live. When we first moved in, someone had hillside chicken coops that could be seen through windows looking west. Always hoped to learn more about them, about the woman who kept them. I understood she was Iranian, also owns apartments that we see. We used to hear her voice giving instructions to workers on her property--gardening, fence-making. It's a very steep hill.
There was much commotion around the chickens back then from people in another part of our community. Thought the coops were unsightly. Not I, said the little red hen.
Before there was a chance to learn more, the whole arrangement disappeared. Maybe the city of Portland stepped in, though the town is famous for urban chicken keeping. The City Chicken gives out seasonal info, asks for pictures of yours for their Hen House of the Month page.
Back to why the headline on this post. Email arrived this morning from organization I never hear from--
Eight billion chickens, counting on me! Awesome responsibility.
Several links to sign a petition to the National Chicken Council. Ask them to recommend that their upcoming, new standards include the line, "slower-growing birds and healthier, more humane conditions." Very reasonable but it did surprise me that in 2013 we had to send thousands of letters to ask for something humane. But maybe all the industrial, bigtime chicken-raisers are the like the Republicans who wanted to cut food stamps--heartless.
It took repeated efforts over an hour to sign my name. First thought, ASPCA needs to improve their website--just like the ACA.
Second thought, everone else also eager to sign. Many others like me and my daughter for whom chickens are a special, a symbol of earlier times, repeated in stories, nursery rhymes about an idealized rural America where we worked together for shared democratic goals.
Yes, the personal is always political, link is to 1969 origin.
And sign the CHICKEN RELIEF PETITION. Hens, I remind all who ask about the name of my blog, are a terrific metaphor for women. [photo: Dancing Chicken Farm stand at PSU Farmers Market. Agreeable woman did not intend to endorse comments here.]