On New Year’s Day my sister told me that she and her partner were going vegan for the new year. I was SO excited that my lifestyle had finally rubbed off on them. I knew this would help them with health issues and to lose weight (not to mention all the animals that would be spared).
Then this morning my sister called and excitedly spurt, “Guess what I got?”
I’d been telling her for months to get a Vitamix blender so she could make green smoothies and other healthy stuff, so I said, “A Vitamix?”
“Noooo…it’s something living and I got three of them.”
My sister has four dogs, a cat and, but she’s a sucker for rescuing animals in need, so my second guess was, “Puppies?”
“No…remember how I told you I wanted to get a chicken coup so I could have fresh eggs? Well, I just picked up three chickens. They’re sooooo cute!”
I remembered, but I thought that idea had gone away with her vegan transition. Now I knew that what had gone by the wayside was her New Year’s Resolution. Sigh.
I suppose that raising chickens for eggs is more humane than purchasing eggs that come from chickens raised on factory farms, but I was still disappointed. At the same time, I don’t judge my sister. I know that will only turn her off. Besides, by raising chickens she may form a bond with them that will make her less inclined to eat them and their eggs in the future.
Shortly after talking to my sister, I read a blog comment from Diahann from Stories from the Belly. She wrote that she and her boyfriend went to Uncouped, a powerful exhibit about chickens at the Museum of Animals.
This exhibit explores our common perceptions of chickens and contrasts these stereotypes with studies of chickens’ complex behavior, cognition, and emotions, as well as the realities of life for the 40 billion chickens found on farmsteads. I plan to see this exhibit, and maybe even drag my sis there, and if you’re in Los Angeles I hope you’ll check it out too.