The giblet chicken memo

Those lovely brown giblets. I forgot about them. So, they crisped away in their little bag, offering juices to the rest of the bird. But, it’s OK. There’s nothing wrong with giblet chicken, right?

My aim was something tasty but tamable. Lamb or fish are unwieldy first meals for first apartments. Chicken was the doable option.

So, I did with the beast what seemed workable. No recipe needed. I pulled off its plastic skin, rinsed it, shoved it in a pan and shoved the pan into a searing oven. Easy.

I don’t remember the temperature or how long it cooked. But, I remember that it was good and done when I cut it. I carved off a big piece of breast — a triumphant hunk of meat — and bit into it.

Each morsel was like a little memo to the whining voice in my head. The voice said, ‘You can’t do this. Just order a number seven and get it over with.’ But the giblet chicken memos said otherwise. They said I had done it. Me!

I had done it without salt, with giblets still inside, and probably for an hour too long. But still, I knew I would live, and not just on happy meals alone.

Full disclosure: Box food is a good thing in my book. I crave sliders in a box, especially of the castle variety. And I’m keen on box fried chicken, slightly religious fried chicken, churchy if you will. When I eat it, I know things will be alright. Will be.

But, rolling through the drive-thru can’t do what giblet chicken did. Giblet chicken said things are alright right now. They were alright yesterday, alright all along.

I’m usually too critical to pay attention to cornball counsel like this, even if useful, even if true. Skepticism is the angry secretary of the mind. It likes to hang up on flashy ideas.

When, though, there is sizzle, when there is incense of chicken, poultry perfume, I’m called to attention. You don’t have to make me sit down, be quiet and listen. My appetite will do that for you. I’ll even come back for seconds if asked.

That’s why Mom catalogs your favorite dishes, so she can bypass your inner secretary and get the memo through, the memo that you are remarkable. And she keeps sending this memo, via peach cobbler, creamed corn, whatever it takes, until you believe it, until you start living it for own remarkable self.

On January 15, 1998, I encountered my remarkable self. And, giblet chicken was the memo saying I could care for him. It was a barely edible bird, but a fresh from the oven lecture on my self-worth.

[I sure had fun writing this. If you had fun reading it, please like it. THANKS!]

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