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If I had to guess, I’d say they’re supposed to be French. I mean, I can’t be sure, since I’ve never been able to distinguish French clucking from any other type of clucking — despite my many years on the board of the GPC1 — but I don’t know why else the hens would be wearing those black-and-white maid outfits. They’re certainly not doing anything that resembles cleaning.
We've had to sequester the hens on the screened-in porch, since the dog is convinced we got her three new walking, clucking chew toys. In fact, Sonya has completely abandoned her post beneath David Cassidy (who has barely moved the past two days, and still hasn't eaten) to spend all her time whining and scratching at the porch door.
Marcelle finally ventured downstairs, too.2 She isn’t your typical huntress of a cat — she’s been known to be scared by string — but once we deposited the trio of hens onto the porch, her curiosity got the better of her. Only then did she spy the doves. She batted at one a couple of times, but got bored when it retracted its head into its shell, and headed back upstairs.
As for the hens, we tend not to keep chicken feed in the house,3 so I went out and bought a giant bag of the stuff. (Apparently, however, they're on the David Cassidy diet; they've yet to touch a single grain of it.) If we could get some fresh eggs out of the deal, that would be wonderful, but a little bird told me we'd need a rooster for that to happen.4 And I’m not buying a rooster.
Of course, with my luck, I’ll find four of them under the tree tomorrow morning...
1 Gonzo’s Poultry Council, est. 1978.
2 Aw, I miss Marcelle. For my newer readers, she was the cat I had before Calypso and Schrödinger. Not that it has any bearing on the story, but she was born in Uzbekistan.
3 Surprising, I know.
4 Actually, it was a rather big little bird that told me. His exact words were: “You’re doing it all wrong, son! You need a — I say, you need a rooster, boy, or you’ll never get eggs!”