Archive | Curiosity

Pocket Watch


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Yesterday, as I waited at the Crosswalk With the Fake Button And The Light That Changes In Its Own Sweet Time, I noticed a grizzled old guy in a white t-shirt and jeans. I noticed him because he had a silver chain going to the watch pocket of his jeans. Nobody does that any more. Which made me curious, did he really have a pocket watch? What did it look like? So I went over and stood next to him as we waited for the light to change.

He started talking to me – First about not crossing against the light because he’d talked to a guy who’d gotten a $250 ticket… the cops hide just around the corner and watch, he said. (Mental note.) Then I commented on the watch chain, and asked if he really had a pocket watch. He pulled it out and showed it to me: Nothing fancy, just an old Timex. He has a collection of watches, he told me; in fact, he thought he even still had his high school graduation watch… somewhere… “I wonder if it still works,” he wondered out loud.

The light changed and, as we crossed the street, he told me about the weird (his term) things he collects in addition to watches. Probably the strangest, he said, was his collection of axes. Axes? Yes, axes. He has everything from very small hatchets to very large axes. He has about 50. He’s currently searching for one used by the lumberjacks in the redwoods. The axe handle is more than 40 inches long, and the axe head weighs a ton. (He told me how much but I don’t remember.)

“You’d think those guys had to be big and tall to use an axe like that,” he said, “but I read that on average they were less than 5’7”. They must have had big burly arms, that’s for sure.”

He went on to tell me that he has lots of hobbies in addition to collecting axes. For example, t-shirts don’t have pockets any more, so he makes leather pencil holders you wear on your belt. (He showed me the one he was wearing.) He also makes leather jewelry, and Native American jewelry with bone beads.

All this in the space of less than a block and up an elevator.

We said good-bye as he got off the elevator. “I enjoyed talking with you,” I told him. And I did. Although I didn’t get to do much talking. I’m glad I was curious about that watch chain.


Curiosity leads to Connection.

When has Curiosity helped you Connect to someone else?

Image “Old Pocket Watch” Courtesy of Aleksa D/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I Finally Get It


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I finally get it.

Thanks to tripping over a blog post by Julie Daley, I just had an insight into something that has been puzzling me. Puzzling me, in fact, since I accepted the calling to work in the world of Grief. Since I realized that working in the world of Grief is really working in the world of Connection.

The puzzle?

Where does Curiosity fit into it?

Curiosity, which has been my focus, my bandwagon, for several years. My joy, my playground. My secret weapon.

Grief. Connection. Healing. Curiosity.

“One of these things is not like the others,
One of these things just doesn’t belong,
Can you tell which thing is not like the others
By the time I finish my song?”*

A puzzle. And my fear, at the bottom of the puzzle, was that Curiosity didn’t belong here any more, and I really didn’t want to give it up as a topic. Because it’s fun to explore, to write about. Because it is important.

“Three of these things belong together
Three of these things are kind of the same
Can you guess which one of these doesn’t belong here?
Now it’s time to play our game.”*

Actually…

Now I see that it is like the others, and it’s so obvious to me I wonder how I didn’t see it before.

In her post, Julie wrote about knowing and not knowing, about admitting what we don’t know, and owning what we do know. And something in what she wrote reminded me that Curiosity is what connects us to others. Curiosity is what is happening when we reach out to someone else, when we admit we don’t know, and we’d like to.

Curiosity is what bridges the gap between me and you.

Curiosity is what powers my reaching out, my desire to Connect with you. I don’t know, and I’d like to. To connect with Life. I don’t understand, and I’d like to.

Connection and Loss, Joy and Grief, are intimately intertwined. So Curiosity, as a fundamental aspect of Connection, is part of that dance.

<Ding>

And I have to laugh, because I have known this all along. After all, one of my handles is “Believes Curiosity and Wonder can save the world.”

Grief. Connection. Healing. Curiosity.

They are… connected.

I know it in my bones.

Yes.


Does this resonate with you? What do you know in your bones?

Please leave a comment.

Image: FreeDigitalPhotos.net

*That’s right, Sesame Street. “Three of These Things” by Joe Raposo and Jeff Moss, c 1970.

Skeptics and Cynics. And Coincidences.


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“He was so cynical, it was impossible to deal with him.” My friend told me about a prospective client she had been talking to, and went on to describe how one of her mentors had recently talked with her about dealing with people in the sales process, and how the hardest two categories were Skeptics and Cynics. “What’s the difference?” she wondered aloud.

I almost spit my coffee out on the table. My friend had just voiced a question I’d been asking myself for several weeks. How weird is that?

I can’t even remember what started me thinking about it, but it has floated through my mind several times recently. In and out. Here and gone again. Unresolved. And here it was again, this time in a voice outside my own head.

I managed to swallow rather than embarrass myself, and we started talking it through.

What is the difference between a Skeptic and a Cynic? Why is one easier to deal with than the other? How can we tell them apart?

Here’s what we came up with:

Skeptics are at least a little curious, whereas Cynics are not. Cynics are sure.

So, how can we tell which one a person is?

Well, we decided, by asking them questions. Not by asking, “Are you curious?” but by asking other questions, and by paying attention to how they react.

The idea is that a Cynic is probably not open to being questioned, definitely not open to changing his or her mind. The Cynic is potentially threatened by the possibility of being wrong. The sureness of their views makes the world a safer place, and their egos – and their places in the world – are at stake.

A Skeptic, on the other hand, is willing to listen, willing to consider the possibility that something else might be true, or possible, willing to change his or her mind. Willing to be (at least a little) vulnerable.

Curiosity. If someone responds positively to Curiosity in us, and if they are willing to be Curious, this is a sign that what we’ve run up against is healthy skepticism. But if someone doesn’t respond well to our Curiosity, is not Curious about other possibilities, if someone is Sure, or feels disrespected by being questioned, then it’s a good bet that this is a Cynic. Even if they don’t see themselves in that way.

Conversations with each of them will be very different. In the sales process, my friend pointed out that a Cynic probably isn’t someone it makes sense to spend a lot of time on. But a Skeptic, now that’s someone she could work with.

Curiosity. A tool for learning about someone’s outlook, and a tool for communicating with them.

A puzzle I had been unable to unravel by myself quickly dissolved when I explored it with a friend.

What do you think? When have you encountered Skeptics and Cynics, and how did you know which was which? When have you found yourself being Skeptical, or Cynical, and how did it affect your course? How do the two feel different?

Image courtesy of graur razvan ionut / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Something Is Afoot


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Maybe it’s fallout from the world’s ongoing financial debacle.

Maybe it’s coincidence. (Although I tend to see connections in coincidence and not mere Chance.)

Maybe it’s how the planets are aligned.

Maybe it’s part of an awakening that seems to be happening.

Whatever it is, three different people in my life are preparing to take to the Open Road in the near future and embark upon their Adventure Of A Lifetime (Up To This Point).

The Great Adventure

It started last year when my virtual friend Drew Jacob announced his plans to walk from Minnesota to Brazil. More specifically, from the source of the Mississippi River to the mouth of the Amazon.

Seriously.

Why?

The word Adventure comes up, but it’s only part of the reason. A part of Drew’s drive to travel, to live heroically, to meet The Gods through meeting others – and himself.

Drew has been preparing for The Great Adventure since last summer, and he has been very transparent about his preparations, ranging from Spanish-language immersion in Mexico City to road-testing shoes to wrestling fear and doubt.

I have only met Drew through blog posts, comments, tweets and email. I love his commitment to living his ideals, and his willingness to ask Big Questions. And be vulnerable. And he cracks me up. Of my three friends who are setting out, he’s the only one who won’t be coming through California. So I’ll be following him online and trying to figure out a way to meet up with him somewhere along his way. Meanwhile, you can learn more about Drew and his Great Adventure at http://roguepriest.net. Oh, and while you’re at it, get his ebook, Walk Like a God. It is wonder-full.

On the lookout for Wonder

And then there’s my friend Kelly Nolan Shafer. Kel and I have been friends since high school, and she’s one of those friends you can lose touch with (I did) and then you re-connect and you not only pick right up where you left off but it’s even better than it was before.

In December, when I opened the Nolan Shafers’ holiday letter, I learned that Kelly, Steve and their twin daughters, Helen and Olivia, planned to embark on their own Great Adventure when school got out in June. Their plan was to pack up their RV and tour the U.S. and Canada for six months, meeting up with friends and family as they visit landmarks along the way. In fact, they’ve named their Great Adventure “Our A.T.L.A.S. – Adventures Touring Landmarks Across the States.”

Kelly and Steve will be home-schooling the recently-graduated-from-fourth-grade twins as they go. (Can you call it “home-schooling” when home is an RV? Hmmm…) I am sooo jealous. I don’t just want to go – I want to be a 5th-grader on the road being home-schooled in an RV, too.

Of course, Life has happened between December and June, as it usually does, but instead of letting it talk them out of it, they let it talk them further into it. So the Nolan Shafer clan is hitting the road…tomorrow! And their motto? “We’ll be on the lookout for the presence of wonder. . .”

Wonder. One of my favorite things! How can you not love that? Now you want to go, too, I’ll bet.

My thoughts and prayers go with them, and I’ll be following their adventures as they blog about it. You can follow them too, at http://ouratlas.net/.

A Complete What?

And then there’s my virtual friend LaVonne Ellis. I have a soft-spot for LaVonne for several reasons, not the least of which is that she is one of the Captains Curious.

LaVonne, curious creature that she is, has decided to set out on her Great Adventure next year, touring the country in a van and, like the others, letting us ride along virtually as she blogs her way around the country.

Not only do I adore LaVonne and everything she does, but she mentioned Charles Kuralt in her announcement (OK, I have to go check, maybe I made that up…no, she really did), and he is one of my heroes.

You can learn more about LaVonne and her plans at http://completeflake.com/road-trip/. You can sign up for her newsletter, and check out her most recent posts with updates on her preparations. And don’t be deceived – she is definitely not a Complete Flake.

Something’s definitely afoot.

Whether it’s economic/socio-political fallout, coincidence, or something more cosmic, it is pretty amazing that I know of three different Great Adventures that are in the works. And I’m sure they’re not the only ones – they’re just the ones I know about.

And, of course, there are plenty of people in my life who are on interior adventures, myself included. And that is an important point: External adventures are important, but we should not disregard the importance of interior exploration. It can be just a scary. And fun. And rewarding.

“Security is mostly a superstition. It does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. Life is either a daring adventure or nothing.” — Helen Keller

Life is an adventure – what adventure are you on?


Image: Ian Britton, freefoto.com

Mystery, Horses, Curiosity, and Being Open


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I recently had a profound experience with a group of fellow coaches and the human, equine and canine members of the team at The Flag Foundation for Horse/Human Partnership. (You can read about it here. Go ahead, we’ll wait.)

A central part of that experience was just being present, being totally there, being willing to let go and wonder, What will happen if I do this? Paying attention. Being open. Not worrying if I got muddy or wet or covered with dog spit. That openness made it easier to improvise. To let things happen. What’s going to happen next? And being there for it. Our whole group did that, and our human leaders did that in response to what transpired and what we needed.

* * *

A friend recently called me to talk through a situation with an organization with which she’s been working. We got curious about what she was experiencing, about why she was reacting the way she was, and about her options.

I’ve been in situations like hers, and they call for being curious about the people around us, for seeing what’s happening and yet suspending judgment, for being present in the situation, and for letting go of our egos. For being willing to get muddy and covered with dog spit. To be in a situation where getting stepped on is a possibility, and taking precautions while still being open.

* * *

Which reminds me of  a class I recently taught on strategic management for a group of leaders and managers. One of the things we dove into was why strategies fail. A key factor is the existence of competing objectives, goals that aren’t talked about openly. These can’t be uncovered if we view the situation with judgment; we must explore the situation with curiosity instead. (My objective of connecting with the horses was made difficult to achieve by my secondary goal of not getting sunburned – I slathered myself with stinky sunscreen. Ah. Next time I’ll skip the sunscreen and wear long sleeves.)

* * *

After my experience with the horses someone told me I was brave. No, I said, I was just present. I stayed present with an open heart. It occurred to me later that the root of the word “courage” is the French “coeur,” or “heart.” To have courage is to have heart. (“Ya gotta have heart… all we really need is heart…”) To be courageous is to be… hearteous.

I know, that’s not a word. You know what I mean.

To be courageous, brave, is to show up with an open heart. To be curious. And to act.

Are you willing to show up and be open, to ask, What happens next?

To suspend judgment and really experience What’s happening now?

To dive into the mystery with an open heart?

Would you like to try?

Shoot me an email: susan at susantblake dot com. And enjoy this:


This video was apparently shot when the power went out during a Tommy Emmanuel concert, and he continued – with just two luminarias on stage and someone holding a flashlight in the balcony. In it, he tells the story behind one of my favorite pieces of music.


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Image: bk images / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Curiosity or Nosiness? Another Good Question with a Surprising Answer


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“I’m just not comfortable asking personal questions. I won’t do it.”

This is a real problem for someone whose work involves providing solutions to people, making products available that will protect and help them. Selling.

But without asking questions, how can you know how to help someone, what product or service they need?

“This is something a LOT of people struggle with,” I said. “I think and talk and write a lot about curiosity and it’s place in business and life.

“So let me ask you question,” I said.

“Is there a difference between Curiosity and Nosiness? If there is, what is it?”

She thought for a minute, then her face lit up.

“I know!” she said. “Nosiness is when I ask a question like (she leaned over conspiratorially), ‘What’s your bra size?’ It makes me feel better about myself.

“Curiosity is when I ask a question that’s about you, that can help. There’s genuine interest. But nosiness is when I ask a question just to make me feel good about myself, to make me feel Better Than You.

“Is that the Right Answer?” she asked.

“I don’t think there is a Right Answer,” I replied, impressed. “But I think it’s an excellent answer.”

In that moment, she gave herself permission to use her natural curiosity to help her clients, and she gave me a new way of looking at curiosity.

I love my job…

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Image: renjith krishnan / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

The Surprising Power of Asking Good Questions


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Once upon a time…

I was working with a client who was experiencing some challenges with his interpersonal skills, especially with people with whom he was unfamiliar. (Who among us has not faced that challenge at one time or another?)

After working with him and observing him for a while, I gave him this assignment: Today, focus on making eye contact with people. That’s all. Just look them in the eye.

At the end of the day we debriefed, and I asked him: Did you pay attention to making eye contact with people? “Yes,” he said.

How did it feel? I asked.

“It felt like I knew them.”

* P O W *

That answer literally stopped me in my tracks.

It wasn’t the answer I expected. I expected to hear “It was uncomfortable,” or “It was really hard,” or “It was easier than I expected,” or “It got easier with time.”

No.

“It felt like I knew them.”

I am so glad I asked that question. I could have asked him something easy, like “How did it go?” To which a typical answer would have been “Fine.” It would have taken more questions to get to something useful.

But by asking a different question, I got a very different answer.

One that surprised both of us.

One that gave us a lot more to think and talk about.

“How did it feel?”

“It felt like I knew them.”

What a beautiful idea.

This conversation taught me something important about asking the right question. It taught me that when I ask the right question, amazing things can happen. Things that make both parties look at things differently.

I actually knew that. But it’s lovely to be reminded.

Ask questions.

Ask questions that are different than the usual questions.

Think of a question, then think of that question one level deeper.

You might be surprised by the answers you get.

And isn’t that wonderful?

Photo Credit:

Image: Michelle Meiklejohn / FreeDigitalPhotos.net


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To learn more about the power of asking good questions,
contact me: susan at susanTblake . com
.

Curiosity, Envy and Waxwings


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A flock of Waxwings just arrived in the giant oak tree that shades my patio. It doesn’t give much shade right now, as it has recently lost most of its leaves. I can see them sitting in the branches of the tree, silhouetted against a grey sky. Smaller than robins but larger than sparrows, they are about the same size as the oak leaves themselves. There must be at least twenty of them, and the Waxwings are doing something very odd.

They take turns dropping in waves to the ground. They’re not diving – it’s not quite that intentional. They just sort of flutter to the ground in waves, looking like oak leaves released by a gust of wind.

Then a few minutes later they fly back up to the branches of the tree – which is distinctly un-leaf-like.

They repeat this cycle for several minutes – dropping out of the branches to the ground below, then swooping back up into the branches, only to drop again soon after. In this gloomy almost drizzle, I get only glimpses of their Cleopatra eye-markings, flashes of yellow against buff, and pointed crests.

Up and down, up and down, up and down – to my neighbor’s backyard on the other side of the privacy fence.

I can’t see what they’re doing; I assume they’re eating. But what? What is over there? What have they got that I haven’t got? The neighbors probably don’t even know the waxwings are there, and wouldn’t care if they did. I do; why aren’t they coming to my yard?

Ha! Listen to me. Envy over visiting birds. It’s a fine line between curiosity and envy, between “What is over there that they’re so interested in?” and “What have they got that I haven’t got?” When did I step over the line?

When my ego got involved. Me Me Me. Feeling less than. Feeling self-righteous. Feeling better than. Less Than and Better Than at the same time. How silly is that?

I laugh at myself, then choose to sit back and enjoy watching them and just be grateful for that.

And maybe I will go peek over the fence.

Photo Credit: Ken Thomas (KenThomas.us (personal website of photographer)) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons


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Still Life


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"The First Thing I Thought Was Beautiful" from Remember to Look Up, Tip #3: Appreciate Beauty

Recently my eye fell on a little grouping of berries and pinecones that I had arranged – one of several still lifes I had composed around my home for the holidays – and I thought about the term “still life.”

I probably first heard the term in 9th grade Art class, when we practiced painting “still lifes” to learn the mechanics of creating the illusion of three dimensions on a two-dimensional surface, experimenting with color, light and shadow.

What an odd term, I thought, “still life.” Technically, the items in a still life aren’t alive, or they aren’t alive now. Flowers. Fruit. But they once were.

Where did the term come from, I curiously wondered. I thought of all the “masters” who painted still lifes centuries ago. The term has certainly existed for centuries, far longer than since I was in Junior High mere decades ago.

What was it, I wondered, that first compelled a painter to capture such a vignette on canvas? Was it composed just for that purpose? Was the artist so moved by something that caught his or her eye that s/he had to paint it? Was it the way the light caught the curve of the apple, the way the shadow fell behind the strawberry, the way the colors of the flowers seemed to glow from within with a vibrance that the artist knew would soon fade? Was it a way of capturing, in a simple vignette, the treasured memory of the loved one picking the flowers, the time spent gathering the fruit, the meal shared? Was it a moment of piercing, unexplainable beauty? Or was it simply an exercise?

Was it something meant to capture the symbology of abundance, of appreciation of the fruits of the earth and of our efforts, no matter how simple?

Or was it simply a place for the eye to rest, to be still in the stream of life?

It occurs to me as I clear away the decorations, the leaves, berries, boughs, and seedpods, simple though they were, to hold the space for the new year and its adventures to enter, that I must remember to create one new Still Life where my eye can rest for a moment before I go on about my way.


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Playing Chicken


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Today I was folding laundry, absent-mindedly looking out the window. A movement caught my eye, and I saw…

…a chicken.

I live in a fairly busy residential neighborhood and, even though we’re only two blocks from the county fairgrounds and we are almost out in the country, we are also one block from Main Street and this is a bustling neighborhood. Even so, I’ve seen raccoons, possum and all manner of birds – but no chickens.

Until now.

I shouldn’t be surprised; backyard chicken-keeping is becoming more and more popular. I have even considered it.

What to do?

Hmmm. I had seen the man who lives across the street outside a few minutes before, looking at his house. Maybe he was looking for a lost chicken.

So I went outside and starting talking, clucking and chirping to the chicken, slowly getting closer and herding it away from the street. It – she – spooked a couple of times but not too badly, and after a couple minutes I was able to pick her up, clamping her wings to her sides so she couldn’t start a flap (so to speak).

I took her across the street to the house on the corner. As I got to the gate, a woman and her little girl were walking down the street toward me.

“That’s a chicken!” the little girl said.

“It’s a pretty one, too,” the mother said. (She was, too: A very pretty black chicken with green highlights in the feathers. “Does it live here?”

“I hope so,” I said. “I just found it across the street, and I saw the man who lives here a few minutes ago walking around; maybe he was looking for it.”

“Let me open the gate for you,” the mother said (since my hands were full).

She did, and I went up onto the porch. Dilemma: How to ring the bell? I tried to poke it with one finger, then leaned on it with my elbow. The chicken just clucked.

No response.

Sigh. Now what?

Well, I figured, if it’s their chicken, I should just leave it. If it’s not their chicken, at least it will be safe behind their white picket fence. (Yes, a white picket fence.) So I put her down and said goodbye and let myself out, and went back to my laundry.

I couldn’t just leave it there

It didn’t feel right, though, and I was curious. Was it their chicken? What if it wasn’t?

So I finished folding my laundry, while peeking periodically out the window. She was still in the yard across the street, happily foraging in the lawn, eating seeds and bugs. When I was done, I went back across the street.

This time, without my hands full of chicken, I was able to open the screen door and knock on the door. The Man of the House opened it.

“Hi,” I said, “I live across the street. Do you keep chickens?”

“No,” he said, “but there’s one in my yard.”

“I know, I put it there,” I replied. (He must think I’m nuts, I thought.) “I found it across the street, and I saw you outside looking around a little while ago so I hoped it was yours.”

“No,” he said, “it’s not mine, but I have a dog that would probably like it.”

At this point his wife and little girl came out to see what was happening. “We saw that chicken a few days ago,” they told us. “It was almost dark, and I thought, ‘Is that a chicken?’” the mother said. They went on to tell me they had seen it a few houses up, so I thanked them and turned to retrieve the chicken and leave.

“So, we meet again,” I said to the chicken, and started to herd her toward the fence, clucking and chirping at her. She clucked back. I tried not to think about the family peeking through the curtains, watching me. This time I tucked her under one arm and lifted the latch on the gate, let myself out and pulled the gate closed.

Not so fast…

Well, the hen didn’t like being tucked under my arm, so she started to scratch with her legs and got one wing loose. I dropped her on the parking strip.

She wasn’t a particularly ambitious chicken; happy to be set down, she contentedly started scratching and pecking at the parking strip. I slowly herded her away from the street and toward the fence, and soon picked her back up, wings clamped to her sides, and started walking up the street.

She just clucked.

“I must look pretty funny,” I thought to myself, “walking down the street with a chicken.” Oh well. It certainly wasn’t the first time I had looked silly and certainly wouldn’t be the last.

What if I couldn’t find her home? I wondered. She was a really nice chicken, pretty, well cared for, no bald spots, gentle. Someone must certainly miss her. If all else failed, I decided, I would take her back to my apartment. (Although I didn’t know how I would navigate opening the front door and opening the slider to my patio with both hands full of chicken. And I couldn’t imagine what my cats would think when I set down a bird bigger than either of them to open the door.) Anyway, I figured I could let her roam on my big patio, which is enclosed by a tall privacy fence. (Which hasn’t kept raccoons and possums from visiting and eating the goldfish in my fountain, but at least she’d be safe from dogs and traffic until I could get a coop built.) But I would put up signs before committing to keeping her permanently.

Next stop

I walked down the block past a few houses, bird in hand. At about house three, there was a young man outside putting something in his truck.

“Excuse me,” I called. “Does anyone around here keep chickens?”

“Yeah,” he said. “She lives across the street.” He paused, then added, “She’s free range.”

Apparently, I thought. “Thanks,” I said, and crossed the street (thinking, “Why did the chicken cross the road?” “Because I carried her…”) to a pair of duplexes. As I walked toward the buildings, wondering what to do next, a woman opened her apartment door.

Going home to roost

“Hi,” I said. “Is this your chicken?”

“No,” she replied, “It’s theirs,” and pointed at the other building. I turned around and saw a teenage boy looking at me through the window. Then a woman in her forties opened the door and came out with two young children.

“Hi,” I said. “Is she yours? I found her wandering around.”

“Yes, she belongs to my fourteen year old son,” she said, looking at me like she couldn’t decide whether to be friendly or suspicious. “She has a coop in the back and she just wanders around during the day.”

“OK,” I said, and put her down in the driveway, where she happily started poking around. “She’s a nice chicken, I figured someone would miss her.”

The mom decided on being friendly. “Yes, we’ve had her for about six months. She just started laying eggs. Her name is Kentucky Fried.”

Seriously.

“I’m surprised she let you pick her up,” the mom continued.

“Birds like me,” I said. “I used to keep ducks.” That sounded weird, even to me, but it was relevant – that’s how I knew how to pick her up.

Anyway. I said goodbye and went home to put away the laundry. (After washing my hands.)

The Moral of the Story

The moral of the story is this: I was curious about finding a chicken roaming a street I wouldn’t let my cats out on. And I had to choose between a) the risk of looking silly while attempting to solve the mystery and b) doing nothing. I didn’t want her to get run over, or to have her people miss her, even more than I didn’t want to look silly or (worse) like a busy-body neighbor. Sometimes the fear of looking silly can keep us from being curious and taking risks, but we get to choose whether or not to let it stop us. And it’s usually not as bad as we fear.

All’s well that ends well, I suppose. I met a chicken today. And several neighbors. I wonder what my encounter with a chicken portends for 2012?

Maybe I’ll get a chicken…

Photo Credit: “Australorp Pullet In The Henhouse” by Paul L. Nettles


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