Moving to Freedom, .Org

Axis of Gastric Evil: Taco Bell and KFC

old house, source unknown

In my dream of being a “working writer,” one of the BIG anticipated benefits is the part where I wouldn’t have to leave the house. Ever.

I like it in my house. It’s a relatively safe and controlled environment. There’s a manageable number of people here. (Except when my daughter’s friends are over.)

Yet, sadly and ironically, and despite having an Amazon Prime membership, I think I’d still have to face the world, even more so than I do now. There are post ideas out there, free range ideas that may taste slightly more fresh than the ones that come from my housebound, caged mind. We all lose when the next post comes from a desperate and febrile examination of the walls around me.

I wasn’t thinking about any of this when I left to pick up Taco Bell for lunch yesterday. If I had, it would have been an additional although unneeded justification for the trip. “I have to go get junk food, honey. I’m working.”

I longed for Taco Bell all Thanksgiving week while on vacation, but my desire was tempered by being sick and I never made it over there. I put it down to virtue at the time.

Yesterday, I wanted my fix. The usual menu choices danced like salty sugarplums in my head. Old friends Crunchy Taco and Chili Cheese Burrito along with audacious newcomer Bacon Ranch Chicken Flatbread Sandwich.

On my way out the door, my wife said, “I’ll have chicken.” This was off plan. Kathy doesn’t like Taco Bell and typically has no interest in these ill-advised lunch runs. But there is a KFC next door to Taco Bell, and this meant she was asking for me to negotiate two drive-throughs. I played dumb. “A chicken taco?” I asked.

But no. She wanted KFC, and she wanted the “new kind” of chicken, although she couldn’t tell me what that was called. She clearly didn’t realize how hard it is for the hunter to go out on the savanna and chase down his prey under normal circumstances, without having to face an unfamiliar menu, armed with dubious terminology.

(What of our daughter? She was at the neighbor’s house at the time. She doesn’t really eat, anyway. With any luck, they were feeding her something nutritious over there.)

On the way, I considered my approach to the hunt. Was I the kind of person that would go to the KFC drive-through first, so that my own food would arrive home marginally warmer?

And that’s when I felt the impact. SMACK-O! I’d run down a free range idea. It wasn’t really that dramatic of a hit — more a bump in the road and the gradual realization: A post had been spawned. Now I was being observed. (By myself, but soon enough by you as well.) My decision would be made public. (Again, by myself, but no less public a revelation.)

Was I the kind of person that would favor my own food temperature over my wife’s, when all nine people that read this blog, which includes my mother-in-law, would find out?

(Do you begin to see how complicated my life is?)

If we look at this as an impromptu social experiment, my awareness of being observed would affect the outcome, of course. Maybe I would go to Taco Bell first, now. (Maybe I should have stayed home, where it was safer.)

Maybe I would just get KFC for myself, also.

My chicken bowl was all right. Kathy’s grilled chicken was delicious. She let me have one bite of the drumstick, but growled at me when I went in for another. I should have torn into it out at the watering hole, when the kill was made. I’m sure that’s what our ancestors did. They had no blogs to act as their conscience.