Friday, September 7, 2012


Mack dropped his change into the tip cup at the counter.  Reaching for his coffee, he nodded at the waitress and turned to the door.  As he reached for the handle he paused to read the sign on the cork board that hung by the window.

"Driver Wanted:  UTI Construction
Will pay for licensing.
Call for more info."

Below the sign, two pull tabs remained.  He blew on his coffee and on impulse tore the tab with the phone number.  He pushed through the door and walked out onto the sidewalk.  The bell jingled overhead.

He took a seat at one of the tables that faced Main Street and sipped his drink.  Looking down the block he saw his truck.  The truck he had slept in the past three nights as he traveled across Colorado.  He hated this feeling of wandering.  A vagabond.  A nomad.  A drifter.

Mack reached for the newspaper that had been left behind at the table and skimmed the classified pages.  He jiggled his foot as the familiar feelings of restlessness stole over him.  A farm truck rumbled by and Mack looked across the patio toward the street.  And that's when he spotted the bronze sculpture.

A four-foot headless chicken stood amidst the hot pink petunias.

Mack shook his head and chuckled.  He turned back to the newspaper and his eyes focused on the headline:  Mike the Headless Chicken Festival.  He read about the "Wonder Chicken" that had lived for 18 months after a botched be-heading and the annual festival held in his honor.  Mike had literally been running around like a chicken with his head cut off.  And so had Mack.

In his gut, Mack knew it was time to stop running and maybe this was the sign he'd been waiting for.  He fingered the phone number, staring at the digits.  He took the last swig of his coffee and walked back into the cafe.  The waitress behind the counter looked up at the sound of the bell and smiled at him.

"May I use your phone?"


Linking up with The Red Dress Club (again ... I couldn't decide - here's the other link).  This week's prompt:  350 words to write a piece in which a local or regional item or industry plays a role.  A real chicken and a real festival ... but a made up Mack.

A picture from a few years ago ...


  1. What a great story, both the real and the fictional. I would say the chicken deserved a festival in his honor.

  2. Loooove your story! You are a great writer. So gifted. i have to agree with Linda about the chicken and honor. Hey, I WILL be doing another linky party...last week was just too stressful and crazy as ya know to do it. I am also changing the day to Weds. because that day is just not as popular and many ppl don't like to link up to multiple sites. Anyhoo it will be open from 5 am on Wed. until Thurs. late at night. Hope you can come link up. ;)

  3. I would think - should I live after a being beheaded, accidentaly or otherwise - that they damn well better have a festival in my honour!


    (I hope Mack finds what he's looking for.)

  4. I love Roadside Attractions so I am jealous that I never heard about Mike the miraculous headless Chicken but you certainly do him honor here. Excellent, though brief, story intro that leaves me thirsty for more about Mack.


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