Chickened Out

Posted on August 30, 2014 under Storytelling with no comments yet


Fare or Fowl?



It was a simple enough question.

During a recent purge and cleaning of the fridge, my wife asked me about some chicken nestled on the back shelf.  As far as we could determine, it was well over seven days old, and, while not harmful to one’s health, its “curb appeal” was wanting.  We try our hardest not to waste a morsel of food, but every now and then, something past its prime gets lobbed into the composter.  I’ve ended up in there once or twice myself.

Is it just me, or are we turning into a nation of poultry purists?  Once upon a time you had a chicken dinner for a real treat, but nowadays the proliferation of poulet, in all its forms, is something akin to the Tim Horton’s phenomenon.  There seems to be chicken everywhere.

Chicken nuggets, chicken a la king, deep fried chicken, chicken stew, roast chicken potato chips, chicken wraps, stir-fried chicken, chicken balls …

I will never forget my first trip to the Chicken Burger Restaurant on the Bedford Highway.  Everything about the place was just perfect, from the 1950’s décor to the juke boxes.  But the big attraction was the chicken burgers themselves, washed down with their matchless chocolate milkshakes.  These days you can have a meal there before flying the friendly skies, as they have an outlet at the Halifax airport.  Same food and friendly staff but no fresh-air order counters … yet.

Chicken gumbo, rotisserie chicken, chicken Kiev, chicken cordon bleu…

The Colonel brought his famous brand of chicken with “eleven different herbs and spices” into our neck of the woods in the 1960`s.  We woke up one day not long ago in our home town to find that the local KFC outlet was reduced to rubble (they closed it and sent the employees home first).  It was if the Colonel had just kicked the bucket and left town.  It caused quite a flap.

Chicken Cacciatorre, Tuscan chicken, chicken fingers and taters…

If you have your head down for even a nanosecond, you might miss the A& K Lick a Chick in Little Bras d’Or.  It is reputed to have the world’s finest deep fried chicken.  You might not want to stop there the night before bloodwork for your cholesterol readings.  Right across the street there is a Tim Horton’s which, in and of itself, is not surprising.  However, this is a very famous Timmie’s, for years ago it became famous for a time when the face of the Blessed Virgin appeared on an exterior wall of the building.

Chicken has become so highly regarded as a food staple that it has developed its own brand in Quebec.  St. Hubert’s Chicken is as much a staple in the Quebecois diet as poutine.  In case you’re wondering, St. Hubert is the patron saint of hunters, mathematicians, opticians and metal workers.  It almost seems like one of the Popes ran out of ideas for patron saints and gave St. Hubert all the leftovers.

My wife is forever espousing the merits of a balanced diet.  I am suspicious that my diet might not be quite there yet.  I have noticed that small feathers are appearing on my arms and that I am prone to making audible clucking sounds when asked to do chores.  Unfortunately, I am not allowed to “chicken out”.




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