Friday, July 11, 2008

Chickens and So Much More!

"I have to say, for a chicken blog--I don't see many chickens. But oh well; it's all good.
--Kate, The Manic Gardener"

Do I need a disclaimer? Should I tell my story, the origins of "Chickenblog," all over again? Is it time to revisit those Chicas... Chicas of the past and present?

Lady Betty Orpington. She's a big girl now.

In the olden days, before iPhones and Blue-Ray, I gave up handwriting letters and started learning how to email family and friends. Geoff had always been computer savvy. He used to read me Internet articles back in 1990, which is only recent in geological time, but not in the context of modern technology. So, Geoff was hip and cool, but I was a total newbie and using email was a gigantic tech-step.

Amelia, The Test Pilot. She's got her wings now!

Anyway, I was writing emails to Hawaii and Wisconsin and trying to keep family caught-up with our growing family. And it never occurred to me to cut and paste, to send the same letter to multiple people... that seemed like it would be impersonal, like cheating, and besides, I could never remember the keys for cutting and pasting. In 2002 Geoff thought it was time to update the whole communication system. He thought web-logging would be the most efficient and interesting way to share news and explore a medium that was just starting to take-off.

Amelia's feet are spotty and her beak has a Groucho-'stache. I think Betty could stand in for Harpo.

Not me. No, I am a resistant, foot dragging, fearful, shy, reluctant kind of being. I still pop my corn on the stove top and I am suspicious of new fangled things, like yogurt in a tube and online banking. Microwave popcorn is not right. Bank tellers should be better dressed than me and alive, because that is just what I am used to. I just know I've told this story before. I wonder if I am telling it the same, or dressing it up?

I was kicking and screaming, but Geoff dragged me into the 20th century. Then he pulled extra hard, and managed to get me into the 21st century. My first assignment was to choose a name for my blog. Having never seen any blogs, and still not understanding what the point of blogging could be, I felt unprepared and indecisive. I didn't feel like a person with an agenda or something to sell. I did not have a hobby I wanted to share or promote. There was no creative impulse to drive me, and so no inspired, literary, introspective, artistic or appropriate names came to mind. We had just adopted 4 chicks, the most happy and daring thing had done since having babies, and chickens were foremost in my thoughts. They were new and funny and a source of pleasure for our family, as we were beginning a new chapter in our lives. Our Rancho lives, living in a fixer-upper in the country, learning how to operate a tractor and battle gophers. Amused and distracted by our 4 chicas, I chose "Chickenblog" as the name of the blog.

I see Kate's point. There aren't many chickens for a chicken blog. And, sadly, there were many years with no chickens at all. Chickenblog is about my dreams of having chickens, it's about the whimsy of chickens, it's about me feeling giddy and optimistic when I think of chickens. Chickenblog is my letter to family and friends, a family journal, a way to connect. It's about chickens of the past, like the one we bought for a dime, when we were living in Guatemala, or the ones Santa brought us when my brothers and I were really little kids. Chickenblog is about the chickens we brought home in May 2002, and the new flock we started this year. Chickenblog is about not knowing better and thinking my blog needed to call itself a blog. Chickenblog is about me and us and our stories and deep thoughts and other musings, and sometimes I think I write like a chicken... hunting and pecking at the keyboard, scratching the surface and looking for good things, crowing and noisily clucking when I feel good or scared or excited.

I am amused when I think of how reluctant and confused I felt when I started blogging... Almost like a headless chicken. Just kidding. Creepy, I know. Sorry. (lol) I could not see the big picture or where things would head. There is a lot we take for granted about blogs now, and there are almost as many blogs out there as there are themes and motivations... it's funny to me, thinking about the early days. 6 years ago was a long time ago in the world of web logging. I wonder where we will be 6 years from now...

I know where we were 19 years ago. We were catching our breathes, grinning, happily just married. Happy Anniversary Geoff. Still grinning. Still happy. It is all good.


Katie said...

There is nothing to trust about yogurt in a tube. You totally had me cracking up!

I haven't been a reader for all that long, so I am happy to hear that story again.

Happy Anniversary!

YayaOrchid said...

Hmm....wonder where my comment went. I just typed it and submitted and it's gone!

Anyway, just wanted to wish you and your hubby a very Happy Anniversary and also to say I LOVE this post! Your comparing typing on the keyboard to a henpecking is so good!!

Pls do continue to share more pics of your chicas. I too long for someday having chickens again!

amy smith said...

Congratualtions on 19 years!

and i agree, yougurt in a tube is not yougurt at all.

where are the new chick pixs? i want to see the brown beauty!

d.a. said...

Yogurt in a tube... ick.

Happy Anniversary, and many more!

Mama Spark said...

Your anniversary and my birthday are on the same day!! Happy Anniversary!

Lesley said...

Happy anniversary!
Those chooks of yours are so very handsome!And can't you just see dinosaurs in their shapes and stances? Or am I being weird?

Laura Jane said...

Cute Chicky photos

I especially love the 'headless' one!

Happy Anniversary

Tracy said...

Happy Anniversary belated! And great chickie update! Not sure about the tube yogurt though...ick! So good to catch up with you here...We're just back from London--had FAB time! Now resting travel-weary feet and doing lots of laundry--LOL! Maria's picnic looks like my kind of party--any pea sammiches left? ;o) Happy Days to you all ((HUGS))

equa yona(Big Bear) said...

If you took a video of them you could call it "Chick Flick" I guess video doesn't actually 'flick' does it? Hmm any way, thatnks for the story and feliz anaversario!

Jennifer said...

Happy, happy anniversary! Too funny, but of course -- Ken and I celebrated our own 19th back in May. It's a long time and no time at all, eh?

I wonder if I need to worry that there aren't really any monkeys on MY blog.... And you've always been very chicken-y.

nikkipolani said...

I did once wonder about the chickens, but every time "chickens" were mentioned, I could almost hear you sigh with longing. I got it. And look at them now! They are so stylish girls, Amelia and Betty. I'm glad you've posted all these photos of their gorgeous plumage.

lori said...

love your blog....and the chicken photo shoot really cracks me up :)