Is Being a Bad Ass All it's Cracked Up to Be? Or . . . How I almost got arrested on my first official day as a Bad Ass Chick

My daughter, Bo, and I joke often about being “bad-asses.” You know, as in all tough and ready to tangle, etc., etc. So when I got a text around 6 a.m. this morning from my friend, Noelle, telling me that I’d been chosen to be the Bad Ass Chick of the Day on the Elvis Duran show, a nationally syndicated morning radio program, I thought she was kidding. And yet . . . I turned on the radio, and there I was! An Official Bad Ass Chick! It was thrilling . . . until I realized I had to break the news to my nine grandchildren . . . think about it . . . “Well, kids, I was going to save this for when you were old enough to understand, but your grandma is, well, she’s a bad-ass chick, and now the entire country knows it. Now, let’s discuss the best ways to respond when the kids at school talk about me . . .”

The thrill quickly subsided and my husband and I went outside to take care of our hundred-plus rescue animals, shoveling and dumping grain and stomping through the snow and mud . . . you know, typical bad-ass activity. Yet little did I know what happens when you receive the cloak of Bad-Assdom . . . the tenor of you life changes swiftly and eternally . . .

It all started yesterday, before I knew about my changing destiny. I’d heard news about how the livestock at Woodbridge Animal Control had been confiscated by police and taken to an undisclosed location in town. Wow. I have to say, I panicked as we have been taking care of a formerly neglected horse, Cheyenne, that the town technically owned, and if they were getting out of the farm animal business, I wanted to make sure she wasn’t going anyplace as she is still in the process of rehabbing. Also, Parker the pot-bellied pig, who had been amongst the confiscated, had been promised to me months earlier! I’d been waiting until Wednesday, when I knew ACO Karen Lombardi would be at the shelter desk, to go down and fill out the paperwork for both of them. I opted to drop my pitchfork and race down to lock up Cheyenne right then – I’d already lost one animal, no point in taking any chances with the other.

I spoke with Karen this morning, who said she wanted to go check on Parker and make sure he was in a good place as, for some odd reason, the police had taken it upon themselves to remove these animals and not go through protocol. I said I would go with her (secretly hoping that if this woman heard my story about how Parker had been promised to me, she would agree to let me have him . . . you’ll see how well that went shortly) and we met up at her house.

First things first . . . while I am now a Bad Ass Chick of the Day, it only has to do with the fact that I rescue horses, pigs, cows, and everything else from slaughter and then rehab them to work as therapy animals. I can lift 80-pound bales of hay, toss 50-pound sacks of grain like they’re bunches of bananas, and make a 2,000 pound horse instantly drop his bad attitude and behave. Other than that, I work very hard at being a very “good girl” and never, ever do anything to get into trouble. I even drive the exact speed limit. Always. Alas . . . that was the old me, the pre-Bad-Ass-Chick me.

At first all was fine when Parker’s adopter met us at the door. She was going to let us see him, and was even excited to meet me as she knew so much about my work. And yet, minutes later, something changed and she started yelling, then said she was going to call the police. We apologized and started to leave, but a UPS truck blocked our exit, and as he backed out, the police arrived. One. Two. Three. Four. Five police cars. For a couple of women this seemed extreme but then I realized  . . . THEY MUST HAVE HEARD I WAS THE BAD ASS CHICK OF THE DAY! There was no other reason for five police vehicles and their accompanying officers to come to the aid of this lady! I’m tellin’ ya, word gets out fast when you’ve accepted the Cloak of Badness . . .

There was about a half hour of banter about whom would get arrested, with me wondering exactly how to get chores done in the dark after my husband bailed me out (assuming that he would, of course . . . if not, my fledgling bad-ass daughter Bo would have done it just to be the first to laugh in my face.) During this time, Parker’s adopter told us that she had given her information to Sergeant Thomas two weeks ago, when he first approached her and asked her to take all the animals. He said he would give it to Karen to vet her out and decide if she was a suitable adopter. This was news to Karen, who had gotten no paperwork, and frankly, it was big news to me! If I had known Parker was going to be pulled from the pound, I would have jumped on it and adopted him then. I also knew that the police had been told several months ago that I was going to take Parker; I was only waiting to know for sure if he was going to be forced to leave the shelter. 

In any case, I stood waiting to find out if I was going to be arrested, and was actually kind of excited about being handcuffed as, being such a good girl, I have never actually been cuffed under any set of circumstances, and if anyone steps up and tries to say the opposite, well, he’s a liar and . . . well . . . that’s beside the point . . . THE POINT BEING they decided to let us go and if we never went back there again, we would be spared having our names in the Police Blotter. Bass Ass Chick that I am, I hardly heard this as I was busily composing a song in my head of Alice’s Restaurant proportions, but half-way through devising the refrain I realized that it was not to be. I got in my pickup truck and drove the speed limit home to feed the roosters . . .

Karen spoke with the police this morning about my situation, and how I had been promised Parker months ago. They told her to get over it, the animals were staying where they were. Well, even us Bad Ass Chicks are crushed when we find out the pot-bellied pig we’d been promised has been snatched away, under extremely bizarre circumstances where absolutely no protocol has been followed. I think I should have been given at least a right of first refusal as I had been in the Parker A. Porker adoption pipeline for such a long time. I mean, if I wasn’t going to get the pig, they may as well have cuffed me and booked me . . . if I’m gonna be a Bass Ass Chick, I may as well do it right and have a worthwhile story to tell.

I will be going to a town meeting tonight where the “raid” on animal control is a topic, and I will leave my house early to get there despite that fact that my new Bad identity allows me to drive the farm truck at least five miles per hour above the speed limit.

I may not be able to get Parker, but as of this morning, I now know I must keep trying, especially when the circumstances are so fishy.

And while I’ve only been officially declared for about 10 hours now (thank you Elvis Duran and company!) we Bad Ass Chicks never back down from a fight . . .

Kathleen Schurman owns Locket’s Meadow, a farm animal rescue sanctuary in Bethany, Connecticut, where she lives a life filled with “glamour” which is her cute little euphemism for “manure/mud/slime, etc.” When she is not blogging she is shoveling glamour, teaching therapeutic riding and occasionally writing a book (her most recent title is Three Days in August.) But mostly, she’s shoveling glamour . . .

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