Mojo and Me

I learned the name of the rooster’s mojo but I prefer calling it the rooster anyway because calling it by its name implies some form of relationship. I suppose in a way we do have an adversarial relationship he wants to attack me and I want to avoid being attacked.

He doesn’t seem to get that I don’t attack him. I haven’t. I will defend myself when he lunges but I’ve never gone after him in any way which I believe shows incredible restraint on my partner.

There are two hens that were here when the rooster was brought home. Obviously this means they are outcasts and he began pecking at them and being generally mean. He even keeps them from eating if he can, so I try to feed them in a different location than the others but today I made the mistake of feeding the sickly chickens too close to the house door. They’re usually out earlier than the others looking around for food and they were right at the door when I opened it. I gave them a portion of the food and then moved down towards where I usually feed the chickens.

They began to eat healthy which is good. The rooster decided not to eat but rather just to stand in my way giving me the eye. I learned the reason he staring at me is because the second my gaze is not into his eyes, that’s his moment to lunge. This means no matter where I am on the property during this standoff. I must look at him.

In today’s case he was between me and the house. I stand and wait and he plays his little game where he walks around picking up pieces of leaf or rocks or whatever, presumably in an attempt to make it look like he’s not paying attention to me when clearly that’s all he’s doing.

I wait. When the opportunity arises, I make one step closer to the home and then wait again. Eventually he tries to draw closer and I talk to him a bit. At this point usually I had something in my hand like a stick or a piece of metal that I can keep between him and I and then slowly try and cross in front of him on my way to the home, but this morning all I have are empty food dishes.

I wait.

Eventually I do get on the other side of him and at one point he makes his move. Whoosh. It doesn’t make it all the way to me, and stops a little short because I’ve spotted him obviously and if he does come closer physical contact on my part will happen and I think he’s learned that much.

He moves around again and I realize that he’s not going to have any food to eat. The other chickens will have finished their plates by the time he gets around to going and looking for his portion. I laugh. This silly game is costing him a meal.

It’s difficult to get from the main area to the home without looking where I’m going but at this point he’s just far enough away that I can take quick glances take a step and return my gaze to him. I talked to him a bit more and then go in the house. I do believe he had some food to eat but not as much as he probably would have wanted.

Our next lunch. Comes in a few hours and I will position the dishes differently. I will also carry a big stick.

Today was a draw. He struck once and missed. No points awarded

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Jeff Goebel