Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Pasty Butt? That's Not Real

Several of the little girls in the writing class I teach have chicken coops in their backyards. They told me about a phenomenon called "pasty butt." That's when the poop clogs up the hen's butt and if a human doesn't clean it up, the hen will die. 

"WHAT?" I could not believe this. "How can hens survive out in the wild then if they can die from not being able to wipe their butts?" 

The girls really didn't know the answer to this--they figured those hens would just die from not being able to poop. The girls are around 9 years old, which means that they are just fascinated with poop, farts, and burping and so many of their stories are peppered with aliens farting. 

I came home and told Peter about pasty butt.

Peter: Pasty butt? That's not real. That must be what the girl's mother calls it. 

Me: Well, what would YOU call that condition?

Peter: I'm sure there's a real and scientific name for that. And it's not going to be pasty butt.

Me: Like we go around using the scientific name for everything. Pasty butt is probably an accepted term in the chicken keeping community. 

Peter: Not likely. 

Me: Well, what would YOU call it when a hen can't poop out of her butt?

Peter: I don't know. I think I would need a few days to think about it.

Me: I'm only going to give you 5 minutes.

Peter: Uhm.... Butt Shut or Shut Butt.

Me: Right. Because THAT sounds MUCH better than pasty butt. 

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