The Chicken Party

Even if you marry the exact perfect husband, there will be some things that are important to you that maybe you never even knew about before meeting him.

For me, that was Miracle Mike.  I had never heard of Miracle Mike before meeting Nathan.  It turns out that Miracle Mike is a real thing, and that he really existed.  He was a chicken, or more specifically, a rooster, and his farmer went out one Sunday to chop his head off with a hatchet for Sunday dinner.

Except the farmer missed the brain stem, and Miracle Mike became known as The Headless Chicken, touring for 18 months on the vaudeville circuit before choking to death in his hotel room one night like all famous rockstars.

I wish I were kidding.  I’m not.  Google it.

Some wives have fancy homes and decorate for fancy holidays.

But me?  At the start of every summer, I decorate with chickens.

Headless chickens.

Nathan takes this very seriously.  He is very introverted, but he plans this party every year with different games and activities, and he even makes prizes for participants.  This was his 15th year to throw this party.

The party has several traditions, like starting out with a reading of the sonnet – yes, an actual sonnet – that Nathan wrote in Miracle Mike’s honor.  He reads it while the guests hum America the Beautiful.

 Another tradition is that guests bring chicken themed foods:


And this year, Nathan made Chicken-N-Waffles flavored ice cream.   No, really.  That was his contribution:


Then there are the games, like this Doughnut game, where he tied the treats to string and hung them from poles so that children had to use only their mouths to peck at the doughnuts to get bites.  Why?  Because Miracle Mike was fed with an eye dropper for those 18 long months.

There are other games, like Rubber Chicken Bowling:


And the team competition of drawing Miracle Mike while sharing wings:


And Peck Like Mike, the paper bag game:


Other years have other games, like the time people had to make chicken costumes out of nothing, or the times we played “Angry Peeps” using a homemade catapult system to fling those marshmellow peeps across my living room.

And there is always the chicken dance:

 All mockery aside, it is hilarious and crazy and silly and an opportunity to bond with friends and relax with our children and just play together as a community.  Life can be so hard, and we are all surviving so much, and there are times we feel pretty isolated from others while drowning in parenting and trying to keep Kyrie out of the hospital.

But the chicken party?  That’s a touch of normal we get once a year, laughing with friends while our children play together.    

Well, it’s “normal” with Nathan in charge of event planning.

Those are the natural consequences you get when marrying a husband in musical theater.

And that’s why I picked him, this guy who could endure alongside me on this very intense journey of mortality.

Even if he brought his (headless) chickens with him.

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About Emily

I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints since 2009. I serve as a Chaplain, and work as a counselor. I got bilateral cochlear implants in 2010, but will always love sign language. I choose books over television, and organics over processed. Nothing is as close to flying as ballroom dancing - except maybe running, when in the solo mood. I would rather be outside than anywhere else, especially at the river riding my bike or kayaking. PhD in Marriage and Family Therapy, and currently doing a post-doc in Jewish Studies and an MDiv in Pastoral Counseling. The best thing about Emily World is that it's always an adventure, even if (not so) grammatically precise. The only thing better than writing is being married to a writer. Nathan Christensen and I were married in the Oklahoma City temple on 13 October 2012, and have since fostered more than eighty-five children. We have adopted the six who stayed, and are totally and completely and helplessly in love with our family. Nathan writes musical theater, including "Broadcast" (a musical history of the radio) and an adaption of Lois Lowry's "The Giver". He served his mission in South Korea, has taught song-writing in New York City public schools, and worked as a theater critic for a Tucson newspaper. This is not an official Web site of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

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