I rose early on Saturday. Romeo was out there, crowing softly at the break of dawn. I reached for my phone to send a text to The Bowfisher’s dad… then stopped. It was too early on a Saturday; I didn’t want to wake him. At least that’s what I told myself. In my heart I knew father and son were both out of bed and anxious to spear a chicken, but something kept me from pressing the SEND button.
Yawning and stretching my arms, I watched through the window as the vaporous visitor strutted in front of the coop, the sun illuminating his brilliant reds against the bright greens of spring. The air was still. Lucy, clearly smitten, followed his every move with lustful infatuation. Laverne and Shirley seemed to have lost interest in the rooster and were busy concentrating on whatever it is that chickens think about in their spare time.
I sipped my coffee and began to reconsider. Was it really so bad to have a rooster hanging out in our yard? What was he hurting? These days he politely vacated the premises before evening rolled around, so letting the girls out for their evening constitutional was no longer a problem. He and I had developed a sort of dance, like a choreographed gentleman’s agreement. He could stand by the coop as long as he liked, but when I approached he would retreat step for step, and vice versa, a fifty foot moving demilitarized zone between us. I began to think I could live with this.
My wife, on the other hand, was still in mother hen mode. She wanted that rooster dead. And what of my pride? My public image on Facebook? And then there were the two bloodthirsty hit men. I felt a manliness crisis coming on.
The rooster did not make an appearance that Sunday. Lucy was probably sad, although I couldn’t tell for sure. I was a little disappointed too, having become accustomed to our daily encounters. Laverne and Shirley went about their normal routines – eating, drinking, laying eggs, and pooping in their nests.
As dusk settled and the weekend came to a close, my soul was in conflict. I no longer wanted the rooster to die. Lucy didn’t want the rooster to die. Laverne and Shirley were addled, while my friends egged me on, pushing me into battle. Even as the sweet smell of holly blossoms wafted across the lawn, a spirit of violence loomed heavy. All was calm that day, but a storm was brewing.
Next: The Conclusion.