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Ruffling feathers in the hen house

Some situations take on a dreamlike quality that lulls the mind into believing the experience resides outside the physical world. Then reality marches in, shakes you around like a boneless chicken, throws you on the floor and steps on your wings making its exit.

When the sledge hammer sped towards the ground, set in motion by sheer arm strength and increased in momentum by gravity, my spouse didn't think to curl back his tennis shoe clad toes. That's why the mallet struck him dead on the largest knuckle of his right foot, crushing it against the asphalt.

He responded the way men do, by flying off the handle and letting loose foul words that would shut-up a flock of guinea hens. I encouraged him to seek medical attention.

It stuck in my craw that he accused me of henpecking.

Time passed only to prove that it, in fact, does not heal all wounds.

A year after my spouse incurred the abrasion, the doctor crowed that only immediate surgical attention would enable my hammer wielding hubby to return to the free range. A lot of lame wing flapping erupted from the patient.

While checking him in at his pre-op appointment, the admissions clerk, engaging in a bit of banter, cooed about her new office space away from the podiatry surgical unit. As she told it, the sawing, grinding, drilling and scratching noises escaping from the area left her feeling like she'd sat all night under bright lights, in a poultry barn, trying to lay an egg.

But then, noticing my beloved's expression of mortal dread, she smiled pleasantly and remarked, in a noble effort to calm him, on the similarity of podiatry cacophony to the dentist's office; a soothing thought indeed.

Even though I made arrangements for our children's care, so I could drive my darling to and from the hospital, he gallantly volunteered to hobble himself to outpatient surgery . . . so the kids and I could roost a little longer.

Yes, dear. Perfect. I would like to go down in history as the old bitty who forced her own husband to walk five miles to the chopping block

Upon arrival to meet his fate, a nurse beckoned him to follow her behind mystery door number one. She gave him a tiny blue gown to wear and instructed him not to shed his boxers. He obliged, except for the under garments, since, in his haste to leave the nest, he had forgotten them that morning.

My spouse let out a nervous cackle, but the nurse simply clucked.

Then I sat, and sat, and sat, waiting for the scraping of his bones to conclude. When the waiting room phone rang, a nurse reporting to the Adams family spoke to me from where they'd cooped up my number one rooster.

"Dr. [insert any doctor's name but my husband's surgeon] wanted me to let you know that the gizzardectomy went fine and he will come speak with you shortly," she said. I panicked as I realized one of my eggs was rolling away.

"Dr. who did what to who Adams," I did not calmly ask.

Well ruffle my feathers; turns out she was making crank calls to the waiting room.

The next thing I knew, a nurse wheeled out the real Mr. Adams (gizzard intact), looked directly at me (the only person there) and said "Are you here for Mr. Smith?"

I'll never know if she and the crank caller shared the same identity, but I suspect, at any rate, that they're both the type to stir things up in the hen house.



Web posted on Thursday, January 20, 2005











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