Arkansas Chicken Man Plagued by Attacks

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Police in Searcy, Arkansas, have no leads in repeated attacks against Steven Turnage, who wears a chicken suit on local city streets to promote a fast-food restaurant.  During his two weeks on the job, Turnage says he has endured not only the ordeal of wearing a chicken suit in 105-degree heat, but also assaults by local residents.  He did not report the initial attacks, which involved the throwing of Skoal cans and various frozen drinks.  But Turnage called police after a salvo of bottle rockets were fired at him, one setting fire to part of the suit and another hitting him in the eye.  (It was unclear from the report whether the chicken eye or the underlying human eye had been struck or the percentage of the chicken suit that was destroyed in the blaze.)

"People don’t take this costume seriously," said Turnage, who apparently wants to be taken seriously while dressed as a six-foot chicken standing around in 105-degree heat in small-town Arkansas, hoping to encourage passersby to eat what he is dressed as.  "It’s getting to the point where this is really a dangerous situation," he complained.  "They need to understand that there’s a human underneath that suit."  Well, this is Arkansas we’re talking about, but still I think they do understand that there’s a human in the suit, Steve.  That’s why you’re having this problem.  If they really thought you were a six-foot chicken they’d have eaten you by now, although they may still be out hunting for a six-foot skillet.

Either because the attacks are sudden hit-and-run affairs or because nobody gives a crap, police have yet to make any arrests or issue any citations in the matter.  "Obviously it is against city ordinance to shoot fireworks inside the city limits," said a police spokeswoman, implicitly approving the Skoal and frozen-drink attacks.  Police did not appear to have any leads or to be trying to get any.

"It’s challenging," Turnage said of his chicken-consumer-attraction job.  "You’ve got to be very dedicated and have a high tolerance for heat.  You almost have to have a calling from the Lord to do this type of work."

Have faith, Steven.  Like you, Job was also troubled by "[t]he fire of God [] fallen from heaven," that "burned up the sheep and the servants" (Job 1:16), and did he not also complain that "archers compass me round about" (Job 16:13), and of his "disfigured garment" (Job 30:18), and did he not also complain of his persecution for a bunch more verses, like unto a whiny baby, until the Lord showed up?  (Job 38:1, et seq.)  And was that not extremely awkward for a while there?  Yet when Job said the right thing, the Lord blessed him, and he wound up with about 20,000 sheep and camels, and a thousand she-asses, at least according to this translation, and long were the days of his happiness.  (Job 42:1-17.)  So hang in there.

Link: AP via