Tuesday, May 31, 2011

New England Brisketeers

All for one and one for all! The timeless creed of the musketeer!

Never has an oath of friendship, loyalty, and duty meant so little.

For these brisketeers, the slogan can be translated thus: "Death for each of us! Death for all of us!"

It really gets you right here.

Addendum: How can this be only the second example of Three Musketeer-related suicide food we've found? If ever there were a trope pleading to be established and nurtured, it's the band of rollicksome swordsmen dedicated above all to their own destruction.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Crazy About Que

Oh, we go back and forth on this topic. A few years ago, we had this to say about the prospect of insane animals being consumed:
... as natural and wholesome as it is to exploit the suffering and credulity of reality-deprived lunatics, we can't help feeling a twinge of regret.
We went so far as to include the depiction in our long-running (and Emmy award-winning) Festival of Cruelty series.

Now we're placing it within a context of standard suicidefoodistic iconography. Has our stance softened? (Has it hardened?) Aw, who knows. All we can say is this pig—and maybe the cow and chicken behind him—can't wait to dedicate their lives and deaths to the Great Institution (formerly known as barbecue). Their minds might be infected by noxious delusions, but who among us can claim to live a life completely free of misapprehension?

Let us give the straightjacketed pig consideration. Let us—at last!—give all the lunatic animals the respect they deserve.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Angel's BBQ

A sturdy example of the Grateful Sacrifice, one of the icons of the suicidefoodist movement.

If we could hear the thoughts of this pig, this newly minted angel, he might say, "At last! I am delivered at last from the stinking life into which I was born, and which was bequeathed to me as a necessary precondition for my ascendance into blissful eternity!" (Getting killed and grilled really brings out the poetry in a pig.) "Ill will? I bear the humans—my betters from their soles to their souls—no malice, for they have engineered my deliverance! And the only cost was a brief—so, so very brief—lifetime of worthlessness!"

Which is why the haloed food wears a beatific smile. Through his suffering and utter abnegation, he is clarified into his essence. And now, on ornamental wings, he soars to his last and best destination, and the life beyond life that his death and consumption made possible.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Smoked Meat Festival

This gentille sausage, glimpsed in his glorious death throes, is the emblem of the Ville Platte, Louisiana, smoked meat festival, better known as Le Festivale de la Viande Boucanée.

Standing in his airless chamber of choking smoke, the flames roaring on the floor, Pierre Sausage grins an unguarded, lopsided grin. Truth be told, he's having the time of his life. Well, what brief span of life still remains.

What might have been a scene of horror becomes an endearing vision of unabashed delight. The door is open, but the sausage isn't going anywhere.

This is exactly where he wants to be, his skin crisping, his flavor peaking. He's as happy as a kid in a clubhouse. This is his fort. His sanctum, his temple, his church. The place of his fullest being. As he undergoes his baptism by smoke, Pierre achieves his fondest hope.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Ogeechee Meat Market


COW must be provided with the following:

  • 1 pair sunglasses (Sunset Boulevard style);

  • 1 cowbell-type bell, copper or bronze (no tin), collar to be made of leather, preferably from carcass of COW's children or other family members;

  • Furthermore:

  • All meat market employees will address COW as "Hey, You" or "Beef Face";

  • In the event that live transport is required, any and all trucks must be filthy and unventilated;

  • In keeping with COW's status as a beloved celebrity, only high quality knives, cleavers, chains, and buckets may be used in the slaughter and dismemberment of COW. (Equipment need not be cleaned prior to use.)

  • COW appreciates your cooperation.

    Saturday, May 21, 2011

    Pies 'n Thighs

    Sure, it's no Packard's (or even a Thee Pitt's), but there's a certain depraved charm on offer in this Pies 'n Thighs menu. (Click on the image to enlarge it.)

    You've got your tough-guy chicken endorsing the fried chicken box. You've got your fishy skipper pleased about the catfish box. You've got your lazy, degenerate pig nonchalant about the pulled pork box. So even with the conspicuous absence of a cow to point out the brisket box, this is still an impressive range of fauna and temperament.

    Animals of the sea, land, and sky (kind of) have gathered to heave a single, unified, unenthusiastic sigh. Together they shrug. Just because the menu features their kinds (and maybe even their own flesh) is no reason to get bent out of shape. Or express much in the way of emotion. Just show up, pose, get eaten. That's all this bunch can handle.

    Thursday, May 19, 2011

    Battle of Brandon BBQ Challenge

    The pig cavalryman is mad. The chicken soldier is mad. Even the cow horse (?) is mad. All the animals are mad! They're up in arms! But look beyond and beneath the anger. What do you see?

    Unity. Something has gathered them together, unified them, and joined them in a single purpose.

    What has the power to tame the forces of distrust, the mutual suspicions and hatreds that set North and South against each other? What can bridge the gap between Agent and Object—that is, between the rider and the ridden?

    Only one thing we've discovered can forge order from chaos, line up competing drives and desires like iron filings in thrall to a magnetic field: the prospect—the hope—of being cooked and eaten. It transforms animals. It gives them all something to fight for.


    Tuesday, May 17, 2011

    Suicide Snacks: quickies 8

    It's been close to a year since we allowed ourselves a moment to rest and offer up another installment of our beloved series of "Suicide Snacks." Sometimes, like today, we're just not up to the rigors of our self-imposed campaign.

    Can you read the inspiring legend on her sash? She has been crowned Miss Prolificacy, the livestock-makingest pig there is! She's a one-sow pork-producing machine!

    This exotic beauty, this made-up, be-kohled octopus in Portland, Oregon, wiggles her sensual arms, beckoning all comers to dine on… well, herself.

    Bonus: Impossibly, this seductress is only the third octopus we have ever featured!

    Really? It's just us? We're the only ones creeped out by a pig with a beard? Okay. Fair enough.

    We're not sure what we're seeing here. The weary satisfaction of another factory shift competently worked, perhaps. Or maybe the muted joy of a lobster facing his imminent boiling out there on the factory floor.

    Sunday, May 15, 2011

    Turkey Terrific

    When you look up terrific in the dictionary, this is the picture you see. (It's also what you see when you look up turkey, dictionary illustration budgets having been slashed.) The whole thing is strange because this is actually a mural from a West Roxbury, Massachusetts, restaurant.

    This blissed-out bird, his cloacal sphincter nothing but a demure pucker at the end of his atypically legless body, is an instant icon.

    The pig or hotdog self-applying condiments is nothing compared to this guy. Even the chicken spooning broth over himself is small potatoes.

    This turkey has made relaxation his religion, the roasting pan his church. On his bed of rippling brown substance (?), eyes closed, he soaks. He bastes. He cooks. He becomes... terrific.

    (Thanks to Dr. Brian for the referral and the photo.)

    Friday, May 13, 2011

    Bowman Landes

    How to describe this turkey's pose?

    Confident, surely.

    Self-assured. Optimistic. Devil-may-care.

    But in the winghands-on-hips stance, the disingenuous "Who, me?" look in the eye, we see something more. We see an attitude of entitlement. This bird knows he's good eating. The facts of his life, his curriculum vitae—from his hatching to his eventual mechanized death—suggest nothing less than the inevitability of his consumption. And he knows it.

    Thus, the smugness, the superfluous plea for approval. He has their approval already.

    His destiny, to be metamorphosed from living thing to lifeless product, is preordained. It is axiomatic. You'd be a little full of yourself too, if you knew the weight of an entire civilization were leaning on you, pushing you to become what you were meant to be.

    Wednesday, May 11, 2011

    Hock Lam Beef

    Do you remember Hog, Herd & a Bird? Stupid question. Of course you do. At first glance, the Hock Lam Beef might appear to be a similar triumph of generic animal matter.

    Gesturing with a hoof, this, this thing seems not so much an individual identity as a bizarre all-meats-to-all-people amalgam.

    But in this case, the simplest explanation is the correct one. For this is no implausible hybrid (like, say, this creature or this one). Instead of some ungodly ham/lamb/cow monstrosity, this is just a cow destined to be served by a restaurant formerly located on Singapore's fortuitously named Hock Lam Street. Now that we're contenting ourselves with simple solutions to thorny philosophical puzzles, we are comfortable assuming that the still-living cow has had a giant bite taken from her cheerful and accommodating underbelly.

    Monday, May 9, 2011


    If there's one thing all cows can agree on—whether they be joggers, chefs, or breakdancers—it's the satisfaction that comes from identifying themselves as beef.

    They're not really cows, you see. That's an illusion. They only look like animals in the role of athletes, food preparers, and artists whose medium is movement. What they really are is an ingredient, just a mass of substance to be used by someone else.

    They have been reduced—they have reduced themselves—to the status of foodstuff, and they have never been happier. If they could only get past this troublesome pre-death stage, they would be happier still. For then their external selves would match their internal selves, and that's called harmony. Tranquility. Peace. Oneness.

    In time, you beefs. In time.

    Saturday, May 7, 2011

    Slo Smoked Mo Better

    There's nothing like takin' it... slooow. Just easin' it down, leanin' it back, and takin' it slow. The g's melt away when you prop yourself on the barbecue and let the smoke do its job.

    The pig knows. The repository of an entire culture's self-destructive wisdom, the pig knows that the path of least resistance is the only way to fly.

    He's nestled. He's snuggled in. He's cozied up. He's meetin' fate on his own terms: slow and easy. Not a g in sight.

    Let it happen. Can't keep the future at bay. Can't fight destiny. No point gettin' up and findin' another place to snooze. No use in headin' for a spot with fewer droolin' humans eyeballin' you. Just let go and take it slow.

    It'll all be over soon enough.

    Thursday, May 5, 2011

    Little Sheep Hot Pot

    What's so great (read: not great) about this little guy is how particular he is. With his little bow-tie and his little blue eyes and his little smile and the little red... things in his hair (horns? dinner rolls? lobster tails?) and his transparent little ears. This is clearly not just some old lamb. This is, well, this specific lamb.

    So what might have been a generic still-living-ingredient is presented instead as an individual baby animal. An individual baby animal shipped from Inner Mongolia and lightly boiled and served in Beijing.

    It's one of suicidefoodism's enduring paradoxes: seeing the animal who was butchered for your supper as a separate being, a being apart from some great abstract flock or herd—and a cute baby being at that!—somehow renders it more easy to kill and consume. Little Sheep Hot Pot's patrons don't want more psychological distance. They want to get right in there, oohing and aahing as they settle their napkins on their laps.

    We might have assumed people would react to such a character with revulsion or, at the very least, distaste. Or, we might have assumed that before we started our Great Project.