Why did the chicken cross the road?
Right after Thanksgiving, my husband called out to me to come look out the front window. “There’s something odd out here. I think it’s a turkey.”
“Really?” asks I. This is a man who has had issues in the past. So I gimp out to the front. I see nothing. This is not unusual. I was the child who always finally agreed that she finally saw the constellation or the bride coming out the church door rather than enduring “See? See?” I did see JFK on the Belt Parkway though. I am not quick.
“no, no, don’t you see that black thing.”
And there against the fence across the street was a black chicken.
And then, the chicken crossed the road! Please understand, we live in a suburban area. The bane of our existence is a used car lot next door to us that houses a massage parlor from time to time. Across the street on the corner is a former gambling hall. I was reading news headlines one day at work that the newly discovered bomb plot by either the Gambinos or the Gallos was directed at that building. The Feds closed that one down. And wait for it; we had prostitution there, too! The house that the chicken bolted from we refer to as Sandford and Son. A seriously collects junk when he is not “away”. Also, think from time to time, “junk” is sold from there. Uh, cars pulling up with engines running and people running in and out? And the SWAT team was literally there about three years ago. Police frequent the house (more on that later). Sometimes, on a weekend we have copter hovering over and doing a sweep. No, it wasn’t like this when we moved in and who would want to buy this?
Back to the chicken who has crossed the road and is now in our yard. Now besides the organized and unorganized crime, we also have woods behind us. So, we have a fox, opossums, feral cats, huge raccoons and dogs. T says “Do you think it belongs across the road?” It crosses the road and is pecking at the fence. “yes, why not?”
“Do you think I should go over and tell A?”
Me: “Yes, I do not want to wake to chicken guts on the front step.” We feed the ferals and as a consequence birds, raccoons, Fox and possums. “We do not need to provide gourmet treats for the ‘hood.”
T trundles over and is gone for awhile.
A admits chicken ownership and is stunned that chicken crossed the road. He has more than one. It’s a menagerie over there. In addition to the pitbull that pinned me in the car one day, there is a cat that we feed. We call him AC for A’s cat. We discovered this one afternoon when T & A were talking and AC strolled up and ate the food we leave for him. A says “Oh, my cat never eats dry food at home!” Uh, why should he, when he eats with us? There is a macaw and a little dog, too.
So chicken custody determined, the guys begin to chat. A discloses he’s on probation for DV. Coincidence! T just finished. I did say more on the police later. If you have been reading me for awhile you may believe that T is a devoted and caring spouse. He is when he is not drinking. He’s an alcoholic. He is not allowed to drink in front of me. Easier said than done, no? So, he has been arrested here about 16 times, no joke. This means police have been here at least 20! It’s a small block, hidden away. No one really knows how to get here except for the precinct. In fact, one night they were over and asked, “Weren’t we here earlier today?” No, they were across the street. Fair disclaimer, T ended up in DV because they couldn’t get him on alcohol any other way. An ADA even told me once, if we could get him in a car. He has no license so that’s a non-starter. The DV is the alcoholism. It distorts people. The cops who constantly arrested him realized that when sober, he is wonderful. Over the years, they have liked the work he has done on the house. “Wow, you redid the floor!” We have an almost cordial relationship with them. And we have been to court so often that we are personally greeted, and people look to me for advice. Luckily, that is all over.
T was on probation for three years and concluded it successfully. So, he is in a position to advise A and was giving him helpful hints and tips. We believe it will be the same PO that T had. The first time she came over the house was just after dinner with the kids. In fact, when there was a knock on the door, we thought one of them had forgotten something. I had made stuffed pork chops and used rice wine in the stuffing and had sprinkled it because it was dry. They breathed him and said he was positive. We later learned that the amount would not have been recognized if he had been driving. We didn’t know and were terrorized. They told me that me or the kids would not know if he had been drinking. So, not right. We always know. We have lived with it. And as I said at the time did they really think that having had him arrested so many times I would tolerate it and not call? I was told I could no longer use cooking wine and they made me dump my almost full bottle out. Then they trashed my house searching for drugs and alcohol. When they went through my mother’s antique petit-point purse, I lost it. We have a tortoise shell cat that we took in from outside. Of course, the cats are freaking out with these strange, hostile people in the house. Miss Mollie runs out to hide someplace else. Officer N shouts, “Is that a raccoon?”
Their home visits were fine after that except for the time they came after 10 p.m. when I was getting up at 4 a.m. They have come over when we have been drinking coffee on a Saturday afternoon or making Easter chocolates! And we had no luck coaching Miss Mollie on how to be a raccoon.
Let’s be clear. I never considered myself a victim, ever. I called precinct so that I would not be. Everyone wanted to fit me into a mold just like they do with this disease/condition. When I work, I make very good money so I am not dependent on a man. The house is mine so I can’t be thrown out of it. I was always being offered help to get a job and find housing. Where I did feel like a victim was in the hands of probation. Even though T doesn’t drive or work, he had to be at places that are very difficult to get to without a car. There were also huge fees that in essence I was hostage to pay. I was always told I didn’t have to and he would be jailed. Does this make sense? I was told I could give him the cash (they only accept cash) and transportation cash. Uh, especially in the beginning, money was a trigger! The situation is designed for people to fail and generate revenue for the county. We had to discontinue our marriage counseling as we were told it was not allowed. The program he was in was ridiculous and meaningless, no curriculum. He was told if it was up to them he would not be allowed to live with me. The people in his “class” terrified both of us. There was the guy who had thrown his girlfriend out of the car when it was moving and one who said when accused of choking his girlfriend ” But I stopped when she turned blue!” T successfully concluded the program.
I refuse to be considered a victim with my condition either. I will not conform to people’s expectations. The child is father of the man. My mother used to tell me that I conformed to non-conformity. It’s turned out to be a good thing. I don’t buy into the whole incurable thing. As I have said before, I am not going to tout the advantages and delights of motorized scooters. I hate the spectral leg. I hate orthopedic looking shoes. I use funky walking sticks. And no, I am not going to apply for disability. I do not walk well. I am not disabled. I am able just not as able in certain areas. By the way when I am working I literally walk or stumble more than the average American! Yes, 8 – 12,000 steps a day.
So, husband is giving A advice. This is going to be interesting as I believe she is not as strong as I am and there is a language barrier as well. And we believe it will be the same P.O.s that used to come to us. We would love to be a fly on the wall as they experience the menagerie, chickens included.
Why did the chicken cross the road? Goes to show that we are more connected than we think. And the chicken keeps on crossing the road.