Monday, August 30, 2010

Pig Breeders Association of Catarina

If any pig had reason to flee death, and emerge into light and love, it should be this one.

With the natural beauties of south Brazil's Santa Catarina all around him—not to mention the charming glory of Florianópolis, its island capital city—he would appear to have the most to live for.

And yet.

And yet he is in the grip of Suicidefoodism, that foulest of philosophies. So, while the natural world teems about him with wonders unsampled and the built world rises around him with all its comforts and excitements, he turns toward death. Happily, he turns his thoughts to the City Within the Black Desert.

Oh, he might be "the healthiest, the tastiest," but he has already renounced Life.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Bodega González

It's like the world's most famous pig and this diabolical ham are having a suicide-off!

His hand on his hip—a casually spiteful gesture—he slices and slices.

Slivers of his long-ago-living flesh slowly fill the platter, and his leer only becomes more and more unnerving. Just who is he avenging here? Who is the target of his rage and self-loathing? Is he giving himself what he imagines he deserves, or is it all about you? Is he trying to show you just how much you've hurt him?

We could never hope to tease apart the tangled threads of his dysfunctional motivation, but we do know it's been a good long while since we've seen a ham with this much raw, seething anger.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Icelandic Seafood Fest 8K Run

What they won't do for us, those life-averse citizens of Suicidefoodland!

They will pledge their miserable lives to us.

They will sign up to die.

They will—even without the ability to extract oxygen from the atmosphere—pant and sweat for nearly five miles of punishing masochism!

Defying the limitations of their anatomy, the fish strap on shoes—to what we are not sure—slip on the runner's vest, register for their race number, and take off running. If it kills them (which it surely will), they will finish this thing. They will cross the finish line and then they will cross, you know, the Finish Line. The big one. And there, from the winner's circle that is your plate, they will experience at last what all their training has led them to: the thrill of victory.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010


What touches us so very deeply about this is its simplicity. We don't mean the primitivist graphic design. We mean the so-obvious-it's-invisible shift that this matchbook embodies.

The home of steak lovers.

Do you see it?

Look again.

Who are the steak lovers? Are they the putative customers of the Sizzler chain of steakhouses? Or are they, as depicted here, the cows—that is, the walking, living steaks—who are lovers?

For that matter, what family are we talking about? The diners who pull up and clamor for steak, or the mommy cow, daddy steer, and baby calf?

The purpose of this deliberate muddle, this implicit ambiguity, is to imbue a steakhouse with the traditional values of love and marriage. That suicidal animals should be this commercial message's vehicle is wearyingly familiar.

(Image source. Information on the image's Creative Commons license.)

Sunday, August 22, 2010

The Parade of Roasted Pigs

It's called Parada ng Lechon—the Parade of Roasted Pigs—and it's an annual blecchstravaganza in Balayan, Batangas (the Philippines).

To honor San Juan/Saint John the Baptist, the people do the only logical thing: Every June 24, they roast pigs to a garish, glowing redness, dress them up in all manner of festive and/or contemptible attire, and pose them to create carcass tableaux, which they parade through the streets.

In a spectacle dripping with reverence for the part played by the pigs, the celebrants (the living human ones) honor the once-living effigies and pay them their respects.

Whether outfitted with wigs made of mops, or adorned with feather headdresses suitable for Carnival, or propped up on motorcycles, the pigs are living out—or, well—a string of universal dreams: of freedom, of expression, of the self.

And if there's a better way to put John the Baptist's message of austere living and justice into practice, we don't have the stomach to hear about it.

(Source of the rockin' pigs photo. Source of the others.)

Friday, August 20, 2010

Alaska Symphony of Seafood

Is that enough? We could go on, all the way back to 1998. But surely this majestic sweep, this nine-year span of our tuxedoed fish impresario, provides a suitable account of the institution known as the Alaska Symphony of Seafood.

What more could you need to know? Year after year, a sophishticate climbs onto the stage and leads the band—out of necessity a different band each time—in a stirring rendition of their own funeral march.

It might feature crooning fish, crustaceans playing chamber music, or be-bopping puffers, but no matter the configuration or style, this is music with heart. With soul! With tender, flaky flesh! It's the perfect accompaniment to imminent destruction and it will reverberate during their elevator ride to heaven.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Caporal Fried

One of the satisfying dismaying things about administering this archive is that so many of the bizarre things we see are old hat. A chicken playing at cowboy? Seen it. (Here and here.)

Still, what this sample lacks in innovation it makes up for in sheer, sixgun-firing pep.

This little feller is just so dad-blamed happy to be here, showing off his skills with a shootin' iron while he shows off his palatability when fried to a golden, saddle-leather brown. This is how the West was won, with exactly this kind of vigorous gumption.

Or, not won, maybe. Face it, if the Caporal Kid had been in charge, the West would have been consumed right down to the tumbleweeds—chicken, shrimp, fish, and all.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Sipahh: a dairy digression

By now you understand that nothing in Suicidefoodland makes the slightest bit of sense. Well, prepare to climb a stairway to senselessness.

The subject of our latest dairy digression (see the most recent one, too) is edible straws from Australia. This is merely the landing at the foot of the staircase.

The first stair: A cow advertises the product, presumably to make her immeasurable sacrifice meaningful. The babies she never nursed and raised fade into the blessed circle of the neverwere as she imagines children slurping up the milk intended for instantly irrelevant offspring.

The second stair: The cow, who gives milk, is male.

The third stair: Named Mort.

The fourth stair: With an udder. A big ol', flappy ol' udder proudly displayed and waggled at every opportunity.

The fifth stair, from Mort's unnecessary backstory:
Before we fell asleep, Mort said, "goot your grimbles." "What does that mean?" "I don't know," he said, "that's the point, not everything has to make sense...."
With this explicit acknowledgement that we have strayed into a realm without reason, our journey is almost complete.

The last stair: And now we have reached the top. Mort reenacts the infamous gross-out Goatse internet meme.

Pluck! You won't be needing your brain way up here.

(Thanks to Dr. Kitteh for the referral.)

Saturday, August 14, 2010

4 Pork Harmony

What we really want to discuss isn't the weirdest barbecue-related punning we've seen this year, but the striking imagery this outfit employs.

Look beneath and beyond the iconic barber pole and what do you see?

A pig in cheerful agony, his body wrung by some joyous mangle and reduced to candy-cane stripes of white meat and red gore. The tail waggles at the bottom and at the top the pig's face shows, uncreased and untroubled.

On another note, whether 4 Pork Harmony combines cooked pigs with Sweet Adeline-singing, handlebar-bemustached anachronisms or with an actual barbershop replete with piles of human hair, this is a bizarre blending.

Speaking of which, remember this bracing blend of clashing concepts?

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Kickin' Fried Chicken

The chicken is trying to make an impression on you.

All his training has been for this moment. He learned the forms, the moves, the stances. He worked his tail feathers off—you don't see them there, do you?—earning his bloody red belt, all for the hope that you will pick him.

Like an orphan showing off his manners, his knowledge of multiplication, or his undeniable charm, the chicken wants to dazzle you with his martial arts skills. And his orphan eyes look up at you with longing, bravely hiding their fear of your rejection.

He dreams of winding up in a styrofoam or bucket-shaped cradle, going home. With you. To be given what he has always craved: a death fit for a karate-chopping warrior.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Rajun Cajun Café

There's nothing an inspired crawfish can't do!

And nothing inspires a crawfish more than the prospect of his own annihilation.

And so, warmed by thoughts of boiling from the inside out, the crawfish acquires a drum kit, practices tirelessly (even to the point of mastering the not inconsiderable drumstick-held-in-claw technique), assembles a band (Rajun Cajun), writes some material, finds someone to tie a napkin around his "neck," and offers up a musical salute to his eventual consumers.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Brooklyn Pork Store

Let's get back to basics, shall we? His "royal" "highness," the poor pig in this logo, is characteristic of other regal "food" animals we've profiled. Compare him with this "common man" monarch and this kingly goofball.

The main point? They can call him the sausage king. They can make a big show out of setting a plastic crown on his head. But this pig is no king. Just look at him, his tongue wagging, his dimbulb eyes goggling. Him? Royalty? He's the only one who's fooled.

Even more than most suicidefoodist tableaux, this game—this conferring of mock majesty—is an elaborate joke. The whole place is rank with the condescension shown toward the simple pig. Look at him with his chintzy crown and clip-on bow tie. The king! Ha!

But he buys it. Bless his flabby brain, he buys it.