It is estimated that on Super Bowl game day, Americans will consume 1.25 billion chicken wings. In other words, 625 million chickens will have contributed to the culinary delights of that day.
This information is provided to us by the National Chicken Council, and they say this will be a new record.
I’m not really sure what this information is supposed to do for us, but maybe at some point during the game, we should have a moment of silence for the chicken.
Once our financial system was based on gold and silver standards. Now it may be the chicken standard.
And just imagine what the consumption might be if the pilgrims had eaten chicken instead of turkey on that first Thanksgiving.
Unofficially, chicken is indeed a standard of sorts. Many other foods are compared to it. How many times have you heard someone say, “It tastes like chicken?” That’s a rhetorical question, of course, but it’s safe to assume that you’ve heard it much more than “it tastes like pepperoni.”
I’ve heard that turtle tastes a lot like chicken. I don’t know. I also once heard that rattlesnake tastes like chicken. And that’s a bald face lie. It tastes like an old dead snake, I don’t care how much hot sauce you put on it. Being from the Rattlesnake Roundup headquarters in Whigham, Ga., I went through that rite of passage as a teenager.
I’ve often wondered that if there is life elsewhere in the universe, do they have chickens? If not, I’m sure they have something that tastes like chicken.
Going back to the raw data. When I was growing up I would have thought that you couldn’t have a Sunday without fried chicken. I think Noah must have kept that pair in a special place on the ark to keep the pythons away from them.
But back then I didn’t think too much of chicken wings. I was more into the pieces with a lot more meat on them. Don’t get me wrong, however, we ate the whole chicken – everything but the feathers and the cluck. It was one heck of a marketing coup when someone in Buffalo, N.Y., came up with the concept of “Buffalo wings.” Quite a niche market. When I first heard of them, I wondered if they tasted like chicken.
Now chicken wings are cooked and sold in myriad venue. You can get them barbecued, fried, Oriental style, Cajun style, etc., etc. You can get them plain, spicy, extra hot and something that would make you think you are sitting in hell’s waiting room.
Now fortunately for us, the chicken industry took off like Lindbergh one day, and we don’t have to grow and kill our own creatures anymore.
I truly hated to have to wring a chicken’s neck and then scald it, pluck the feathers and singe it. Sometimes the first effort would fail and the chicken would flop around the barn yard and eventually I would have to crawl under the corn crib and drag it out. I didn’t know it back then, but I was into martial arts. I had to do some serious “mind over matter” by dinner time to enjoy fried chicken. But mama’s cathead biscuits and gravy helped the cause. I guess you could call those side dishes “martial arts helper.”
So maybe we should have that moment of silence during the game to honor this bird whose fried carcass transcends politics, religion and family feuds.
And since I’ve mentioned niche markets and martial arts, it just hit me that another niche market might have great potential. What about karate classes for senior citizens? Instead of earning a black belt, you would earn black suspenders.
Walden is the editor/publisher of the Moultrie Observer and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.