Professor Google says that the saying comes from a time in Las Vegas, when you could buy a chicken dinner in any casino for under 2 dollars. If you won a 2 dollar bet, you’d have enough for a chicken dinner.
Today I picked up 11 future chicken dinners from the post office. I ordered them a few weeks ago when the hatchery was having free shipping sale, which I mentioned to Mr. Awesome at the time. Yesterday, when I told Mr. Awesome that I was picking the chickens up in the morning, he says “when you mentioned the hatchery sale, do you think that counted as discussing more chickens?” Um, Yes? Why else would I mention the sale if I were not intending to purchase?
When I got to the property with the chickens he said, “they’re too cute to eat”. Ha! These tasty nuggets will get a far better life than the shrink wrapped chickens at the grocery store had. We’re doing them a favor!
Factory broilers (grocery store chicken) first get their beaks trimmed hours after they hatch, then for the rest of their 35 to 49 days lives (they’ve been bred to grow to market weight FAST) they are confined to a dimly lit, crowded building where they have far less than 1 square foot space each. As an added bonus, the litter does not get changed during that 35-49 days. So imagine, thousands of chickens standing shoulder to shoulder pooping the way chickens do (about 1/2 pound per day) for 35-49 days. Does it make your eyes water and throat burn? It should, the ammonia would be positively overwhelming if not for the industrial fans that keep it to eye-burning, lesion-causing levels. It is terrible for the birds as well poultry factory workers.
Okay, I’m getting off my soap box. Sorry, I just prefer my food to be treated better. Hence, we’ve bought a farm to feed ourselves.
These 11 broilers will be put out in the pasture when they reach 3 weeks of age. They’ll eat all the fresh grass and bugs they can find, and won’t to be debeaked or stand in filth. Assuming they all make it to slaughter time, the delicious chicken will cost us a bit less than factory chicken and the pasture will benefit from the fertilizing poo. Better life for them, better food for me, and healthier pasture win/win/win.