Sunday, May 20, 2012

Saving the chickens

John was a chicken farmer. Born and brought up in the country side, the redneck way of life was embedded in him – unpolished diamonds as they say. Living with no boundaries and unable to make sense of the city way of life he believed all he could see belonged to him – no boundaries, no restrictions and no things to worry about.

However since the good things never last forever, John would soon have to change his outlook. The Country Planning officer came to his door and told him that a road would be made that would pass right beside his field – grazing ground for his fowls. To help him keep his fowls safe they would build a fence around his field. John was more confused rather than convinced. Building a fence was okay but his chickens were no less high jumpers, they would easily be able to cross over. He wondered if he could convince the officer not to build the road or take it from a different route. So he tried, pleaded and even protested but nothing helped. Finally one day, the road rollers and other big machines came and the road was built.
Slowly by slowly the number of vehicles on the road began to increase. Seeing it as a freeway with no speed restrictions or cops standing guard the commuters zoomed past often knocking down a couple of John’s fowls. A few fowls everyday added to the dead tally making his business difficult while making John miserable.

The officer arrived one day to take stock of the road and the developments. He asked John if everything was fine. John apprised him of the situation and asked if something could be done. The officer said that nothing could be done except putting up a sign board - Drive Slowly. John agreed hoping that would save some lives. But to no use. No one bothered looking at the sign and sped past. John again called up the officer and asked him if he could put a bigger sign. The officer did that but it was still of no use. John repeatedly called up for changing the sign from something serious to something humorous like “Chicken’s crossing the road. Drive Slowly.” and other modifications but none of that helped. The officer got fed up of the incessant calls by John and decided that he would just not entertain him.

One day the calls stopped. Thinking it was just a one off the officer ignored it. But there were no calls for a few days, then a week, then a month. Wondering what was the matter the officer decided to visit John. To his surprise as he was approaching his place he saw all the vehicles slowing down making sure they would not kill some innocent fowls. Wondering what may have caused this his eyes fell on the sign board which now read, “The NUDIST says drive slowly as the chickens are crossing the road”.

Moral: What we have to say is important, but how we say it is even more important. 

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