Friday, October 30, 2009
An award winning piece, and an essay on chicken poop.
LISA IN REDS AND GREENS is a 5x7 pastel on PastelBord. Not for sale.
You've seen this one before on this blog. I had mentioned that I really liked it. Looks like I may know what I'm talking about. It was one of the winners in the recent American Impressionist Society National Exhibition in Denver.
So I was out in the yard on this cool drizzly next-to-the-last-day of October, scraping up chicken poop. No, we don't own chickens, although I always thought I'd like to. I always thought it'd be nice to go on daily egg hunts. And I've always heard fresh, home grown eggs taste better. And the chicken poop would undoubtedly make my flower garden glorious (I have since given up ever trying to grow vegetables. Ever). So Ben told our friends, Miriam and Houston, that I might like to have some of their chicken poop for my garden. They were more than happy to oblige. Ben came home one day this summer with two huge containers of black mush, which smelled suspiciously like, well, you know.
I was a little bewildered, because I had imagined that chicken poop would be dry, almost granular, and easy to scoop and spread around. I wasn't quite sure what to do with this. I thanked Ben profusely, then got my trowel and scooped a little out and tried to spread it on top of the soil. It didn't spread, it stayed in a gooey clump. I tried chopping it, smearing it, stirring it. Very distressing. And surprisingly smelly. I had no idea chicken poop would actually smell like, well, you know.
Needless to say, I was a little daunted with the enormous amount of the stuff. So we've been maneuvering our cars around the two containers in the driveway. They've been there for months, getting rained on, waiting for me to figure out what to do with them. Somewhere in the back of my mind I thought Ben would magically make them disappear.
And it finally happened. I must have run over one with my car, while trying to evade the awkwardly parked truck. I let that sit for a couple of days, thinking Ben might make it magically disappear. But he finally said, "When are you going to do something with that chicken poop (he didn't use that word)? "Oh, was all that for me?" I asked.
So today in the drizzle I scraped and slung and sweated and stunk. But I think I actually am the winner here. I dumped quite a bit of it in an area that hasn't been, but will be a new garden bed next spring, much to Ben's chagrin. Ben'll never know what hit him.