You know how when you buy a car you suddenly see that brand of car all over the place? Hmm – I hadn’t realized how many were on the road. You become sensitized, a veritable car brand advocate as you search around finding others of the same spirit.
In much the same way, not only do you notice when its there, but when you have something you start noticing when it is not included in various events. When you get a concert program you quickly scan for your child’s name, when you enter a recipe you scan that it got included, when you submit an article you check that it got published.
When something is not included there is a sense of wrongness. Someone out there does not validate your choices.
The same goes for our chickens. This holiday season when I was in the stores, invariably I was drawn to the Nativity sets making sure my dear ones were included.
But no. I didn’t find one Nativity set in ANY store that included chickens. Oh to be sure, they had your requisite sheep, cows, and even a few camels, but no chickens.
Now I know that there were chickens in that part of the world at that time, so it’s not like they didn’t exist, they were simply not acknowledged.
I have a working theory about this.
I think that chickens were indeed present at the birth of Christ. Undoubtedly they were up in the rafters roosting (it was nighttime of course). No one even noticed them. Until the rooster started crowing. Maybe it was all the commotion, maybe it was those camels with their long snouts, but never the less I think that there was a version of Princess Tiny in the stable who decided to let loose.
And there is not a baby alive, even a baby messiah who would not be awoken by a Rooster’s crow.
“Shhh, keep it down”, Mary would have whispered.
But when the bleeting sheep arrived, the rooster would have crowed again. It’s what he’s programmed to do.
“Cut it out.” said Joseph. “We need a little quiet down here.”
But the rooster would continue, and continue, and continue.
The shepherds would look at each other in dismay. The wise men would inquire of each other – this is a blessed event what shall we do?
And that most probably explains why we don’t see chickens in Nativity sets. They were there initially but aren’t to be seen the next day. Their gift to the Christ Child probably ended up being a large pot of chicken soup the next morning to be enjoyed by all.
And then the baby slept.
Photo credit: Marc Nozell