A tale of three chickens | December 17, 2020

Our sons went through a little phase where they would only eat chicken.  Kyle and I were too tired to be the good type of parents that would serve up a variety of proteins and sing the Daniel Tiger song about “Trying new foods because they might taste good” before each meal, and so we briefly acquiesced to their fowl palates and ate more chicken than you would clucking believe.

There are probably a million ways to roast, fry, and grill nature’s closest living relative to the Tyrannosaurus Rex (fun fact); but in addition to an aversion to any other form of white or red meat, our boys also refused to consume anything deemed “yucky.”  The Kosior Yucky Scale covered any and all visible and invisible seasonings, sauces, and textures, and often changed from bite to bite.  Which meant we were playing with a pretty short bench most suppers.

I was at the grocery store one day during the Season of Chicken trying to decide between plain ol’ chicken breasts and plain ol’ chicken wings when a sale on Cornish game hens caught my eye.  Figuring it was at least a size departure from the plain ol’ roaster chicken I had in my basket, I picked up three of them.

I returned home to a three-year-old weeping that his brother didn’t want to play with him; a seven-year-old who confirmed that was, in fact, the case; and a husband who needed either a snooze or a drink.  The groceries were put away in between a whirlwind of shrieking, compromises, and at least two naps.  Later that week, I went to cook the newly-begotten Cornish game hens, only to find them missing.

“You must have left them at the store,” Kyle said, after we flipped open my car trunk to confirm they weren’t there.

“Dang, I guess so,” I said.

The weekend came and went, during which the springtime sun turned up the temperatures to a lovely 80 degrees.  The following Monday, our oldest son and I piled into the car to begin the last hoorah of the school year.

“It smells like farts in here,” Seven so eloquently commented as we pulled out of the driveway.

It did smell like farts, and so I opened all of the windows and we used the drive to debate which of us was the gaseous culprit.  By the time we got to school, the aroma had seemingly gotten worse.

“Bye, Fart Car,” our son said, holding his nose as he jumped out before I had come to a complete stop.  “Tell Dad to pick me up.”

I called Kyle.  “I think something died in here,” I said.  We live in the country, where it’s not unheard of for an animal to crawl up into a vehicle. 

“Better check under the hood and the seats,” he said.

I pulled into a gas station, and went over my car like a Tyrannosaurus Rex attacking a Jeep (eh).  Finding nothing, I popped the trunk.  The only thing back there was my yoga mat, which I carried around in case I happened upon a spontaneous yoga session while on my travels.  As the availability of roadside yoga sessions is relatively low, my yoga mat hadn’t seen any action in quite some time.

I unrolled it.

And that’s when the three Cornish game hens, which had curled up behind my yoga mat and festered in the heat over several days, exploded.

I had to miss work that day so that I could change my clothes and get my car detailed.  I couldn’t stomach the smell of chicken for at least a month.  Our boys are now nine and five, and they eat (or don’t eat – but “We’re gonna try new foods ‘cause they might taste good”) whatever we put in front of them, and I haven’t purchased a Cornish game hen since that fateful day.  This year for Hanukkah, my parents replaced my yoga mat, a picture of which is above.

Speaking of absolutely nothing related to this story, this week’s news is about a lot of lunches, a stack of pizzas, and a pile of jammies.  Read on, and Happy 8th Night of Hanukkah!

Oxbow’s Amy Olson has placed second at the U.S. Women’s Open!  She finished one stroke off of the win, and managed to keep her head one day after her father-in-law unexpectedly passed away. (ESPN)

Children at Minot’s Lewis and Clark Elementary have been “harvesting” pennies (and other coins) for the past 16 years in order to put together food baskets for hungry families. (Minot Daily News)

North Dakota’s favorite food critic has been featured in The New York Times. (Grand Forks Herald)

A group of young professionals in Grand Forks raised $1,900 to buy lunch for the staff at the Public Health Department. (Grand Forks Herald)

A Bismarck UPS driver named Barb has a 4-year-old buddy named Antonio. (KX Net)

Students at South Prairie School raised $5,471 by selling pizzas to help pay for food and equipment costs to have a K-9 on the police force. (Minot Daily News)

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(Like North Dakota Nice?  Check out last week’s tale of HanuCanada.)

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