Monday, November 10, 2008

Whenever I think I've lost my mind, I remember Mike

One of the things that Jeff’s small town is famous for, well maybe the only thing its famous for, is Mike the Headless Chicken. Yes, you heard that right. Poor Mike was cut short, literally, one fine fall day when ol’ Farmer Olsen decided it was time for butchering. Farmer Olsen had a long day ahead of him, with many chickens to butcher. For those of you city folk, that means chopping their heads off with an ax. It is the quickest way to do in a chicken. On a side note, nothing puts the fear of God into you like seeing your mom dispatch a few chickens into the big coop in the sky. Anyway, back to Mike. When it was Mike’s turn for the block, fate intervened and gave Mike a new head(less) start on life. You see, somehow the bottom of Mike’s brainstem remained intact enough to allow Mike to live. Chickens, when beheaded, run around for a while all willy-nilly, thus the phrase ‘like a headless chicken.’ The curious thing about Mike, though, was that he didn’t stop running. At the end of the day, Mike was still kickin’. After some examination it was determined that enough of Mike’s brainstem remained to allow him to function. Farmer Olsen figured out that he could drop feed down Mike’s gullet with a dropper. Now that’s thinking with your head, which at this point was not something Mike was capable of. Mike went on to live for nearly 2 years, traveling the country and making it into Rip1ey’s Believe It or Not. Mike met his demise by choking to death in a hotel room. It was a tragic end to a life of mindless wandering. Mike’s story soon became a distant memory relegated to the minds of the old timers. It wasn’t until recent years that Mike’s story was resurrected. The town decided to head up a Mike the Headless Chicken Festival. This festival is complete with lawn mower races, Mike the Headless Chicken Dance, and a Run Like a Headless Chicken 5k run. Its quality stuff you just can’t find in a big city. To learn more about the fabulous Mike, click here.

And how could I forget to
mention that a sculpture of Mike graces the main street in town!

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