Tuesday, March 11, 2008

I'll have the Stegosaurus, medium-rare

Do you guys remember that scene from the Flintstones intro when Fred ordered a rack of Brontosaurus ribs from a fast food place and it tipped the car over because it was so big? I’m assuming it was Brontosaurus. It could have been a Diplodocus for all I know. Anyways, aren’t you curious what that might taste like? Or, perhaps maybe you want something a little more contemporary, a little more modern. How about a Rhinoceros? I can hear the cries now. But Scott, those are either extinct or almost extinct! Eating those animals would be some combination of impossible and highly unethical and illegal!

Au con trair mon frair. (Note: I don’t know French and may have butchered the spelling of their surrender language. I don’t care.)

Apparently scientists are getting close to cloning individual muscle groups in animals. You know, lungs, kidneys, hearts, tenderloins. The idea is that instead of raising a cow for slaughter you could instead clone that NY Strip steak and just sell that. A lot of people are uncomfortable with this idea because of the fears of genetically engineered meat, the ethics/slippery slope of cloning, and so on and so forth. Me? I’m enthusiastic about this and want to throw these pioneers of gastric awesomeness as much money as they need to make this a reality. Why?

Haven’t you ever wondered what some of these endangered animals taste like? What might a Giraffe-kabob taste like? How about Rhino Stew with root vegetables. This is to say nothing of the cured versions of these meats. Endangered hot dogs anyone? We could even perhaps modify the Turducken into a completely new homunculus for consumption. And that’s only the animals that still exist.

If Jurassic Park has taught me anything, and it has, it’s that dinosaurs can be cloned. And why not? Right, the horrible amounts of destruction that they wreak across jungle and city environments. There's always that. But thats why we only clone specific muscle groups! Though, we may have to clone a whole dinosaur, raise it, then slaughter it so that we can determine what the most delicious bits are. This may take a couple of generations of trial and error, but thats a temporal sacrifice I'm willing to make. This brings us full circle back to the Flintstones. Who knew that Hanna Barbara would be so prescient?

But, there are questions here that I think are important and have yet to be considered. As has been mentioned in this space before, I loves me some chicken wings. This past Friday, I was part of a group that had a brief discussion on what it means to be a chicken wing. After all, we’ve been seeing boneless chicken “wings” come onto the market recently. But are these really “wings”? We decided that they were not. Eating a chicken wing is not just about the actual wing. Its also about the experience and the moment. One cannot just lift a hunk of chicken up and plop it whole into their mouth (though it is a fun thing to do when you want to horrify your table mates). Rather, you actually have to eat around the bone, making sure that you get the meat and not break your damn teeth. It requires a certain agility and dexterity that we all possess but rarely utilize. I remember when I was a kid boneless chicken “wings” were referred to as chicken tenders. And all of this is nothing to say of the effect that bones have on ribs.

So, now that we have established that in order for a wing to be a wing, it must include a bone, we are left with the question that if we were to clone other birds and make wings out of them, would we also be able to clone the bone structure? If not, we will not have an entire appetizer sub-group available for cloning. And that would be a real shame, because wouldn’t you be interested to know what a Dodo wing tastes like? I know I would.

So long as they only bring me Ranch dressing.



Edmund Dantes said...

There is a place on the northside of chicago called Hot Doug's. Greatest place ever. Doug will make a hotdog out of anything...legitimately. I would love a tyrannosaurus hot dog. I can already imagine what a dodo would taste like. horseradish mustard, maybe some jalapeƱo cheddar on it.

Lauren said...

I throw this out there for the masses --
Look for the labels stuck on your fruits and veggies:
A four-digit number means it's conventionally grown.
A five-digit number beginning with 9 means it's organic.
A five-digit number beginning with 8 means it's Genetically Modified