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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Father (as in paternal parent, not God) (04/10/08)

TITLE: A Chick and a Crow
By Betty Castleberry


To say I was surprised that my son approached me about females when he was still so young would be an understatement.

I had just gone up to the roof of the henhouse when Drumstick called to me. “Dad, do you have to crow right now, because I have something real important to ask you.”

“Son, you know I always crow at 5:00 AM. I’ll be through in a few minutes. Can’t it wait?”

“I guess so, if you’ll promise me that we can talk as soon as you’re finished.”

“Yes, yes, of course.”

It was at this point that my curiosity was killing me. Instead of puffing out my impressive breast and shattering the silence with my usual peal, I settled for a brief yell or two.

Drumstick was waiting for me, one little white foot scratching nervously at the ground. “What did you want, Son?”

“Well Dad, I met a chick.”

I knew the day would come, but I wasn’t prepared. “I see. Do I know her?”

My son ruffled his coppery feathers. “I don’t think so.”

“What’s her name?”

“I’m not sure I want to tell you yet.”

“I’ll respect that. Does your mother know?”

“Dad, you know I can’t discuss this stuff with Mom.”

“I have to agree hens don’t always understand guy stuff. But Son, I hope you have honorable intentions toward this young chick.”

“I just want to get to know her better.”

Relief spread over me like lice spray. “That’s good, because you’re really too young for a serious relationship anyway. Let’s get some breakfast.”

Drumstick followed me to a bare patch of ground where the June bugs were plentiful. I had just spied a particularly juicy one when Drumstick spoke again. “Dad, there’s something I want to tell you about the chick I’m interested in.”

“Go ahead, Son.”

“She’s speckled.”

I let the June bug live while I carefully thought out my reply. Drumstick’s mother and I had always taught him color wasn’t important. “Is she nice, Son?”

“Oh yeah. Yesterday she let me have this really big worm she found. I think she likes me.”

If I’d had lips, I would have smiled. “Maybe you’d like to invite her over sometime.”

“Maybe. Dad, do you think it will bother you that she looks different than us? I mean, really?”

“You know Drumstick, I haven’t met her yet, but I don’t think her speckles will make any difference.”

My son flapped his wings and lifted himself off the ground a couple of feet. “Woo hoo! I’m glad you feel that way. You’re gonna love her. I think her speckles are beautiful. That’s what attracted me to her in the first place. She’s no different than we are. She likes to get up early, go to bed early, loves a gourmet meal of corn and mash now and then, but her tastes aren’t really that expensive.”

“Whoa. Not so fast. There’s a few other things you should know. Just because I may tell you not to rush into anything doesn’t mean I’m referring to your chick’s speckles. I would tell you that if she were a mirror image of your mom. Whatever opinions I form of her will come from her actions, not her speckles.”

I was proud of my son, although being a dad was tougher than I had imagined. I thought back to the time when Drumstick was just an egg. I had all sorts of ideas on how to raise him, but then he hatched and I saw that little yellow fluff ball. All of my tough dad ideas flew right out the henhouse door. His mom was great at keeping him under her wing. She corrected him and made sure he had plenty to eat, but from that first moment, there was something special between me and my son.

Now he was a young rooster and already interested in pullets. I looked fondly at him. “Drumstick, let’s go find your speckled chick. I’d like to meet her.”

“Right now, Dad?”

“Sure. No time like the present.”

“Okay. Is my comb messed up?”

“Nope. You look great. Let’s go.”



“Before we go, do you think I could crow this morning? Just this once?”

It was time to realize my son wasn’t as young as I thought. “Sure.” I flipped a wing in the direction of the weather vane. “Get on up there. Shake a tail feather.”

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This article has been read 997 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Lenda Blackmon04/17/08
I love this, very creative. I always wondered what was going on in those fowl minds. hehe
Lynda Schultz 04/17/08
Too cute. Great dialogue. Well done.
Debbie Wistrom04/17/08
I smiled the whole way through this bit of joy, especailly took a liking to 'If I’d had lips, I would have smiled." Creative, easy to read and soooo well done.
Christine Miles04/17/08
Ha! Doesn't the lingo of 'love' fit chooks well? Great job.
LaNaye Perkins04/18/08
This was a pure delight to read. I loved your unique approach to this weeks theme. You show great imagination and talent here!
Laury Hubrich 04/19/08
Oh what good stuff! Too funny. Excellent job! You really strutted your stuff on this one -- LOL!
Sharlyn Guthrie04/20/08
This is so much fun with all the plays on words and henhouse jargon. Loved it!
Jan Ackerson 04/21/08
Betty, this is definitely my all-time favorite of yours. So clever and punny (love the kid's name), but nevertheless with a sweet lesson in tolerance. A masterpiece all around. Love it, love it, love it.
Joanney Uthe04/21/08
This is a very creative, clever way to hide a very valuable lesson. Great writing.
Gerald Shuler 04/21/08
This rooster is a real father's father. He could probably even answer the question "Why did the chicken cross the road?"
Angela M. Baker-Bridge04/21/08
Unique, creative, captivating, timely, God inspired. Well done. Blessings, Angel
Janice Cartwright04/21/08
This one only got better as it went along. I love the way you translated poultry talk into human dialogue. Having kept chickens I can tell you making a rooster have good character and succeeding was quite a feat. Roosters are such self-seeking creatures. :)
Mandy White04/21/08
Betty, this was just wonderful! What a good daddy rooster!
Mariane Holbrook 04/21/08
Adorable, just as cute as can be. (Just like you!) Major Kudos!!
Sheri Gordon04/21/08
This is very cute, and so creative. Somehow, you made me "picture" the whole conversation between the rooster and his son. Great job with the topic.
Dee Yoder 04/21/08
Oh my! What a conversation. The images you created in my head just made me smile over and over again. I love the line about "if I'd had lips, I'd smile", too. This is classic, Betty-wonderful in every way!
Celeste Duckworth04/21/08
EGGS-trodenary and very clever and cute. You have something to crow about!
Leigh MacKelvey04/21/08
I'm cackling! Wow! Talk about creativity with a topic! There were so many lines I just loved. I laughed at all of them. I also grinned wide at the last line. It was perfect and this entry should do very, very well!
Lyn Churchyard04/22/08
Oh my Betty, this is wonderful. You have the voices just perfect. Love it, love it, love it.
Joshua Janoski04/22/08
I LOVE this! Very cute and funny.

I liked how the girl he liked was a "chick." In this case, it was literally true, but it mirrored human teenage boys very well and helped me relate better to the character. Oh, and the name Drumstick was very clever and funny as well.

Your entries are always so colorful and full of personality. Thank you so much for sharing this awesome story. :)
Loren T. Lowery04/22/08
Thank-you for the grin this story brought to my day. What a sweet way to teach an important lesson. Of course, I don't know if I were a rooster, I'd like to be known as Drumstick : ) Love your work!
Joanne Sher 04/22/08
Oh, Betty - this is delightful. SO many favorite lines - "spread over me like lice spray" - "If I'd had lips I would have smiled."

And a FABULOUS message too. No red ink from me, girl!
Pam Carlson-Hetland04/23/08
I'm still smiling! Great story, very creative, and a wonderful message of being a good father. Absolutely wonderful, Betty!
Sara Harricharan 04/23/08
Teehee-would I be an echo if I said this is extremely creative? lol. This was funny enough to have me laughing half-way through the read. I loved how you brought these two characters to life and especially how you keep it interesting and hilarious! I loved the 'father' angle on it and especially the last paragraph. Awesome writing! ^_^
Aaron Morrow04/24/08
Hysterical. I got to this line "Relief spread over me like lice spray." and laughed so loud that my wife forced me to read the whole thing out loud while she languished in the lazyboy.

Thank you, this is art. Fowl, but art.

Joy Faire Stewart04/24/08
There is so much I enjoyed in this that I can't list them all. It is perfect from the title to the last paragraph.
Patty Wysong04/24/08
I love it! What a creative, fun twist to put on a serious conversation and transition in life. Excellent!!
LauraLee Shaw04/24/08
Congratulations on 7th place! Doing the happy dance for you!
Sara Harricharan 04/24/08
Yay! I'm so glad this made it up there-Congrats on your well-deserved EC! ^_^
Beth LaBuff 04/24/08
This is so much fun! Congrats on placing with this!
Sheri Gordon04/24/08
Congratulations on your EC. This one was way too cute.
Edy T Johnson 04/25/08
Growing up, I think I learned more from stories than I ever did from lectures or sermons. You have hit on an idea that every parent would bless you for, my dear BettyDee. How about turning this into a book on the critical but embarrassing topic of the "birds and the bees," in which adolescents could read and understand the facts of life with emphasis on the essential responsibilities? Nothing like a good animal story morality play!
Peter Stone04/25/08
Ah, the delight at realising that this story was actually about a couple of roosters! And you carried it off so well, even with relevant jokes and cliches. Good job with the lessons regarding racism and looking at a pontential partner's character, not appearance.
Julie Arduini04/26/08
Betty, I think this has to be the most creative entry I've read. I absolutely adored it. Congrats on the EC.