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submitted by Brittney

Dave thought the hazing ritual the fraternity had tasked him with was odd. But he knew they were the most prestigious fraternity at his university, and he wanted it to look good on his resume. 

So, trying not to question, he and three other pledges made their way to Chester’s Chicken Cave in the dead of night. Chester’s was a locally owned and operated chicken joint that seemed to be fairly popular. Personally Dave had never been there, but he’s heard good things. 

On the way there, his three accomplices were excited and on edge, shouting cheers, and chanting the name of the fraternity. Dave however, who was driving, kept his eyes on the road and his attention focused on the task at hand. His fellow pledges were starting to annoy him. 

Finally arriving at their destination, they circled the block, to ensure the restaurant was empty. On the second pass they turned into the parking lot and followed the arrows pointing to the drive through. 

At the end of the line, as if saying, “come back again soon,” was their target. 

The giant chicken had to be all of eight feet in height and the better part of five hundred pounds or more. Dave hoped his truck could handle it. 

He pulled into a spot and the crew hopped out in excitement. “Quiet!” Dave said in a loud whisper. “If someone hears or sees us they’ll call the cops!” And that would not look good in a resume. 

They group rushed over to the chicken and inspected it. It was bolted to a concrete pillar, which was probably several feet into the ground. “How are we supposed to get it?” One of them said. 

“Maybe we could pull it with the tru–”

“NO.” Dave interrupted firmly. He walked back to the truck, where he opened up the toolbox he had. He pulled out a socket wrench. He handed it to one of the others. I’m not doing it. 

“Dude, it’s not like you’ll get in LESS trouble because you weren’t the one who unbolted it!”

“Just do it!” Another guy said. Dave was pretty sure he’d been drinking. 

They got to work alternating loosening the bolts and keeping lookout. It took some time and a great deal of sweat, but they got the job done. 

“Dave, back the truck up, and we’ll get this cluckin’ thing and get outta here,” probably drunk guy said. 

Reluctantly he got back in, put the Chevy in reverse and backed slowly up too the giant chicken. Watching it grow nearer in his rear view just creeped him out. 

He got out and soon they all pitched in and got a handle on the giant chicken, and lifted. After a few tries, it finally budged off its concert pedestal, and they managed to get it out of the bushes. 

“Man, this thing is heavy!”

“Yeah it is. Why the heck did they want it anyway?”

“They don’t! They just want to haze us!”

“I don’t care, I just want to get it over with!” Dave said, “let’s get it in the truck and get out of here! I’ve got a test in the morning!”

They all groaned, then grunted as they lifted the giant chicken once more and, with great effort, put it in the back of the truck. 

The drive back to the house was slow, uneventful and yet unbelievably nerve wrecking for Dave. But they returned safely without getting arrested–much to Dave’s surprise. 

They pulled the truck behind the frat house, and climbed out. “What now?” Probably-drunk-guy asked. 

“Now?” Dave asked. “Now I’m going to bed. I told you. I have a test.” Dave went to bed, taking his keys with him. 

The next morning, after dreaming of a walking talking 8 foot fried chicken, he got himself ready and went to class. 

Almost to the minute he got there he started hear the “rumors”. One of his classmates tapped on his shoulder as he sat down. “Dude. Did ya hear?” 

“Uh, hear what?”

“Somebody stole Chester’s Chicken, and put it on the Dean’s lawn, again!”

“What? Wait, again?”

“Yeah, man! Every year, Someone steals Chester’s Chicken, dresses it up in school colors and plops it on the deans lawn!”

“They don’t know who does it?! Do they?”

“Nope! Whoever does, wipes of prints, leaves it all day, and takes it back the next night, unharmed! Chester, the guy not the chicken, thinks it’s hilarious!” 

When Dave returned to the house, he was notified he was in the fraternity. “Good! Because I’m not sure if want to steal another giant restaurant mascot.”

“Nah, man.” The frat president said. “Chester is an alumni! He and the dean never got along! Stealing the chicken is tradition!” 

Dave, exasperated, sighed. “Any other weird traditions I should know about?”