Sunday, July 24, 2011

Perspective and Big Metal Chickens

So I have finally given in to the blogging world. I know it's not cute or attractive right now, but if you know me than you know that it is only a matter of time before its appearance is colorful and appealing.

So since this is my first post, what better way to kickoff off a blog than big metal chickens. It's a little long, but worth every minute of your time. I was inspired by a post on this blog: that my friend Dawn had posted on her Facebook. I all of the sudden began noticing these big metal chickens EVERYWHERE I went. I asked Daniel if I could have one one afternoon on a trip to H-E-B and I was quickly given a short "no" that left no room for argument.

Currently, I am "Pretend Jeannie" at Camp Honey Creek for Girls and as I drove through Ingram and spotted yet another one of these magical creatures on my way to dinner last night, the big metal chicken story played through my head. It then struck me. . . . the perfect Sunday Church topic. What better way to teach perspective than the use of a big metal chicken. After dinner, I was struck with an issue - where do you buy a big metal chicken at 8 o'clock on a Saturday night in Kerrville, TX. Why H-E-B of course! I had remembered seeing them at the College Station H-E-B and sure enough it was my lucky night. I spotted 4 of them perched near the produce entrance as soon as I turned into the parking lot. I hurriedly approached an employee inquiring how one goes about purchasing one these metal chickens. After a few hmmms and ehhhhs, it was agreed upon that the best way was to peel off the price tag and a bagger would assist with my new purchase. After paying for my purchase, the bagger and I made our way to the the parking lot where he proceeded to load my new metal chicken into the cart. When we got to the car my big metal chicken must have been hesitant about where he was headed because my chicken was stuck in the cart. Once free, my chicken and the bagger had a short struggle as he was loaded into the back of "Real Jeannie's" car. And as the bagger rolled my cart away and told me to have a nice evening I responded with, "How can it not be a nice evening? I am now the proud owner of a big metal chicken!" At last, I finally had my big metal chicken.

As I rushed back to camp, I was struck with another thought . . . what if someone was already doing church tomorrow? It really was my lucky night, because no one was. So I, along with two campers, was going to get to talk about perspective and big metal chickens. The original story is long and not PG friendly, so after a little bit of editing and some original thoughts of our own, we had the perfect Sunday Church message:

Kristin: Good morning, this was a blog entry posted by a friend of a friend.
Kathryn: This morning I had a fight with Victor about towels. It was basically me telling Victor I needed to buy new bath towels, and Victor arguing that I “just bought new towels“. I pointed out that the last towels I’d bought were hot pink beach towels, and he was all “EXACTLY” and I hit my head against the wall for an hour.
Kristin: Then my friend Laura came to pick me up to go shopping at the outlet mall, and as Victor gave me a kiss goodbye he whispered, “You are not allowed to buy anymore towels“.   And that was exactly what was going through my head an hour later, when Laura and I stopped our shopping carts and stared up in a confused, silent awe at a display of enormous metal chickens.
* Take the blanket off of the chicken. Turn signs around*
Alexa (Laura):  I think you need one of those.

Kathryn (me):  You’re joking, but they’re kind of awesome.
Alexa (Laura): I’m not joking. We need to buy you one.
Kathryn (me):  The 5-foot one was $300 and is marked down to $100.  That’s like, $200 worth of chicken for free.
Alexa (Laura):  You’d be crazy not to buy that.  I mean, look at it. IT’S FULL OF WHIMSY.
Kathryn (me):  Victor’d be mad.
Alexa (Laura):  Yup.
Kathryn (me):  But on the plus side?  It’s not towels.
Alexa (Laura):  Exactly and we will name him Beyoncé.
Kathryn (me):   Beyoncé. Yes.  And when our friends are sad we can leave him at their front door to cheer them up.
Alexa (Laura):  Exactly. It’ll be like, “You thought *yesterday* was bad?  Well, now you have an enormous metal chicken to deal with.  Perspective.  Now you have it.”

* Turn signs around*

Kathryn: Then we flagged down a salesman, and asked “What can you tell us about these chickens?”, as if we were in a fine art gallery.  He didn’t know anything about them, but he said that they’d only sold one and it was to a really weird lady, and then Laura and I said “SOLD.  All this chicken belongs to us now.”

Alexa: So he loaded Beyonce into our cart, but Beyoncé was surprisingly unstable, and the giant 5 foot metal chicken crashed over onto the floor. Laura and I were shouting “CHICKEN DOWN!  CLEAN-UP IN AISLE 3″ but he didn’t laugh.  The manager came to see what was causing all the commotion, and that’s when he found the sales guy unhappily fighting with our enthusiastically pointy chicken, which was almost as tall as he was.  The salesman was having a hard time, and he told everyone to stand back “because this chicken will cut you“, and at first I thought he meant it as a threat, like “That chicken has a knife”, but turns out he just meant the chickens’ ends were sharp and rusty.  It was awesome, and Laura and I agreed that even if we got tetanus, this chicken had already paid for himself
Kristin: We got to my house and quietly snuck the chicken up to my front door, rang the doorbell, and hid around the corner. Victor opened the door and looked at the chicken in stunned silence for about 3 seconds.  Then he sighed, closed the door and walked away.

* Turns signs around *
Alexa (Laura):  What?  That’s it?  That’s the only reaction we get?
Kathryn (me):  That’s it. He’s a hard man to rattle.
* Turn signs around*
Kathryn: Victor was surprisingly mad that I’d “wasted money” on an enormous chicken, because apparently a 5 foot chicken ringing the doorbell isn’t funny.  Then I said, “Well, at least it’s not towels” and that was the wrong thing to say because Victor yelled that he wanted it gone and stormed off, but I couldn’t move it by myself, so instead I said okay and went to watch tv.  
Kristin: When the UPS guy came I hid. He was all “Dude.  Nice chicken” and Victor yelled, “IT IS NOT A NICE CHICKEN”. Victor seemed more upset than usual, so I finally dragged the chicken into the backyard and wedged it into a clump of trees to scare the snakes away.  When I came inside, Victor angrily pulled me into his office to see that I’d put Beyoncé directly in front of his only window.  And I was all “Exactly. YOU’RE WELCOME.”  
 Alexa: I told him that he could move Beyoncé if he wanted to, but he totally hasn’t.  Probably because of all of the giant rocks I piled on Beyonce’s feet to discourage burglars from taking him.  Or possibly because Beyoncé is growing on him.  Still, I can’t help but think that we wouldn’t even be having this argument if Beyoncé was towels.  Honestly, this whole chicken is really a lesson in perspective.
Kristin: So now you are probably thinking two things. First, where can I buy one of these awesome metal chickens and second, what does a big metal chicken have to do with church service at Camp Honey Creek.
 Alexa: Well I am glad you asked. This big metal chicken is all about perspective. Perspective is how we see things. Is the glass half full or half empty?
Kathryn: Sometimes we tend to see only the bad and think that nothing is going our way and everything is just plain wrong instead of looking for the bright side of the situation.  So today, we want to talk about perspective at Camp Honey Creek.
Alexa: If you think you are having a bad day because you tripped and fell on the waterfront and now you can’t do half of your activities and you have to wear an ugly, comfortable shoe for the rest of camp, remember the big metal chicken. Instead think of how lucky you are to have a beautiful waterfront to fall on, and that you have wonderful people to take care of you, lend you crutches, and give you rides in the golf cart.
All: Perspective. Now you have it.
Kathryn: If you have 9 o’clock swimming and it’s SUPER cold, remember the big metal chicken. Just think how lucky you are to have such a beautiful waterfront to swim in when the heat becomes too much to bare.
All: Perspective. Now you have it.
Kristin: If you are discouraged in Riflery because you are shooting for Riflette and need 35’s, but have shot 6 33’s in a row, remember the big metal chicken. Look at those 33’s as only 2 points away from your goal and shooting a 33 is a lot better than shooting a 23 or 13 or even a 3. Be grateful that your riflery counselor is there to offer you encouraging words every shot of the way and is not going to give up on you.
All: Perspective. Now you have it.
Kathryn: If you have tons of summer reading homework, remember the big metal chicken. Think about how lucky you are to have 2 hours of rest hour to yourself every day to work through it all.
All: Perspective. Now you have it.
Alexa: You might think you are having a bad day because your cabin didn’t get honor cabin and you KNOW that is because SOMEONE forgot to take out the trash, remember the big metal chicken. Instead remember how lucky you are to live with 13 sisters and best friends.
All: Perspective. Now you have it.
Kristin: Staff and Counselors, if you are frustrated because that camper can’t remember the order of “pull and breathe, kick and glide”, keeps swinging and missing the tennis ball, paints someone else’s project, can’t remember their horses name on the 10th day of class, never has their letter home written by 4:00, is the slowest eater, or always forgets to do their chore, remember the big metal chicken. Look at that camper as an opportunity to make a difference in a child’s life and teach them life long skills, helping them become the best they can be.
All: Perspective. Now you have it.
Kathryn: When you think you are having a bad day at Camp Honey Creek, remember the big metal chicken. How can it be a bad day when you are at a place where it is totally acceptable to have shower parties, where every night is a giant sleep over with your best friends, and where you have the opportunity to swim, dance, sing, and just be yourself.
Kristin: Where ice cream is better when you sing for it, where you can always be a rock star, and where life is able to slow down for 30 days.
Alexa: Where your clothes don’t always have to match, where you can try new things with endless support, and where you are loved unconditionally.
All: Perspective. Now you have it.
Kathryn: When you leave Camp Honey Creek, these big metal chickens will seem to be everywhere and you will suddenly feel the urge that you NEED and MUST own one of these fine, colorful specimens.
Alexa: Every time you see one of these fantastic creatures, think fondly of your days at Honey Creek and of everything you have learned. Remember your friends and smile at all your memories together.  
Kristin: And when life is not going your way, school is hard, you have a fight with your friends, or your parents just “totally don’t understand”, remember this big metal chicken and look for the good in the situation, because . . . .
All: Perspective. Now you have it!
 It went perfectly and the big metal chicken is now named Melvin. After church, I had several parents inquire about where they could purchase their own big metal chicken and to let me know it was a good message. Melvin is going to be a part of Camp Honey Creek now. I finally was able to buy a metal chicken and Melvin will serve as a daily reminder to all who come into contact with him to look for the good in their day.

1 comment:

  1. LOVE it! Glad you got so much joy out of the story! I am so glad i passed it along!