The heat of July 1954 did not stop these intrepid tourists from making a go of it in the city. In the days leading to July 21, when the photo was taken, food crops had been destroyed, storms had killed 10 and an eclipse was obscured by clouds in Ontario. And in Brooklyn, at a mobile animal clinic for checkups, neighborhood pets were affected, too. Reported The Times: “These dog days shouldn’t happen to a dog. Especially a fat dog, and there are a lot of those.” Photo: Neal Boenzi/The New York Times
Marc Klein was walking his dog, Cocoa, last Wednesday morning in Central Park when he spotted something rustling in the fallen leaves near the park’s entrance at West 97th Street.
It was a feathered creature, but not one of the more commonly seen wild birds in the park. This was a chicken, a handsome, reddish bird that Mr. Klein quickly scooped up because some other dogs nearby seemed a bit too interested in the animal for its safety.
“You don’t really see chickens in Central Park,” said Mr. Klein, 49. “I thought the chicken might be someone’s pet, because it allowed me to get real close. But now I’m holding this bird, and I can’t just go and put it down, because these dogs might eat it.”
So he carried both Cocoa and the chicken home to his high-rise apartment on 97th Street, drawing a stare from his doorman, and another from his wife, Laura.
Unable to immediately reach animal rescue groups, Mr. Klein, an advertising creative director, put the chicken out on his terrace, 16 stories up, and rushed to finish a presentation that was overdue.
After Spotting a Chicken in Central Park, An Odyssey Begins (via NYT)