While looking through old photographs I came across my mother's bridesmaid Irene's story of my father's skill in hypnotizing chickens. Though this act was said to be funny on the surface there also is an intuitive fearsomeness that surrounds it. Shades of the occult. Unworthy power. It seemed that this innate capacity alone recommended him to her, and all and sundry, as worthy to marry my mother. Since he was a farm boy and the year was 1931, the heart of the depression on the prairie, it seemed to have potential despite the pathway being unclear. The accompanying photograph shows four people beside a model A , laughing, my father crouched by the running board, a serious look, almost professional as he is bathed in the esteem which it seemed he deserved. I guess the question was, was there money in hypnosis, and is it chicanery or real, and what about chickens? I can't pillory my father for wanting to be rich in the great depression or to gain my mother's hand. I guess the weakness in his prospects was that he could only subdue one chicken at a time.
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