Now I like chickens as well as most people, which is hardly at all, but roosters have an even lower place.
I was under the age of accountability (determined by my lack of maturity in this case) when my little sister jumped on her bike to ride around our farmyard. She had one of those fat-wheel pink jobs with streamers blowing in the breeze.
As she rode past the flock of free-ranging chickens, the rooster spotted her. Maybe it was the streamers. Maybe it was the heat of the day. In any case, he stretched out in hot pursuit of the bike and my sister.
She glanced over her shoulder to discover the rooster, his head extended, legs churning. She screamed and stuck her legs straight out to the sides of the bike. No more pedaling.
A more mature (or at least kind and compassionate) older sister would have run to her rescue but this was too good to miss. I wanted to see what happened although the tears from my laughter obscured things.
She had enough momentum that, by the time her bike wobbled to a stop, the rooster had been shooed away by our diligent mother, who scurried past giggling me in rescue.
I might have matured a little over the years because something similar came up after I was married with kids.
We had a bantam chicken trio that I liked because of their chocolate tails and rich orange wings and back. They made nice ornaments in our barn.
But the rooster was mean and he started chasing my kids. This time I didn’t laugh until the tears ran. This time, I declared that this beautiful orange rooster had to go.
I offered to give him to a neighbor for butcher. We managed to trap him and stuff him into a feed bag.
“Don’t let him out,” I warned her. “He’s mean.”
After she took the wriggling feed bag home, she called me. “Do you have a hen to go with him? He’s beautiful.”
I repeated my story of a prowling rooster seeking whom he could devour. She insisted so we brought her a hen to go with the rooster.
This was a great win-win, I thought, until a couple of months later. My neighbor called me on the phone again.
“That rooster is crazy! He chases anything that moves!”
I wasn’t very sympathetic. And I do think that rooster ended up in a noodle soup shortly afterward.
For all I know, so did the one chasing my sister many years before. Mothers stand firm against prowling roosters.