It’s cold and windy everywhere. Even here in (formerly temperate) L.A. By the time I went to pick up MJ at her mostly outdoor school this afternoon the kids were huddled over their lunch tables, moaning in pain at the arctic winds lashing through their animal costumes. Of course back east it’s a whole other ball of, well, snow. Three feet! I really oughtn’t to complain. But brrr…it is hard when it drops down into the 40’s here. We’re just not accustomed to it. I may even need to break out my old Max Mara parka. The one I bought when I was making big money. I think it’s stuffed with artisanal paper. It should break the chill a bit. At least I’ll look warm.
Anyway. Speaking of feet, my sister Abigail–who lives on the lower east side of Manhattan– is, at this very moment, preparing for super-storm Nemo by throwing together some chicken stew. Starting, apparently, with stock from a carcass that she bought at a butcher shop where they slaughter the birds on the spot. Agh! I’m horrified. This nearness to fowl slaughter is chilling. I understand that, as a meat eater, my stance is absurd. I will, however, cling to it stubbornly. I can do unjustified indignance like nobody.
Moving on. Abigail was startled, when she got it home, to realize the butcher had given her literally every part of the above-mentioned chicken:
So she sent me pictures. I am famous in my family for being squeamish about meat. Many of you know I am negatively obsessed with chickens–I’ve written about them as vagina symbols, dead adoptees, and awkward conversation starters. Forget about cooking them–it’s always torture. For the longest time I would only do it while wearing food service gloves. Then I ran out of them. That solved that problem. I eventually got over it. Still, this image grosses me out profoundly.
An hour after she sent me the first one, my kind sister sent me a “progress report”:
Turns out chicken feet cook up just like, well, chicken.
Screw the storm. She is doing this just to torture me.
For myself, I went back to Fresh and Easy and racked up another massive amount in grocery bills. Among the loot I brought home? Nothing with feet. Or not anymore. I did get a box of frozen veggie-chicken tenders. I suspect MJ won’t eat them, but it’s always worth a try. “Protein in any form!” is my motto. I guess I should add: “Except for bird appendages!”
Anyway. I close by saying: Ab, I hope you stay warm and safe through the mega-storm. I hope your soup tastes scrumptious. And if chewing on the toenails of some recently deceased butterball improves your lot one bit, I say more power to you.
Me? I’m gonna throw some veggie-tenders on the grill, wrap myself in my paper-thin, paper-stuffed parka, and wait for spring to come. I might even need to put on some socks. I think I have a pair somewhere. Brrrrr!