Chicken on the Half-Shell
More from the great Colorado debacle… I mean vacation.
As I mentioned last time, this trip was by motorcycle… in July… across lots of desert-like terrain. Upon our arrival at Colorado Springs we were (pick one)
- Hot and tired
- Hot, sweaty and tired
- Hot, sweaty, tired, and hungry
- All of the above
Our first mission, find a place to sleep. Preferably one that wouldn’t look twice as we sat on their balcony and wrapped camo tape around the barrels of paintball guns. Second mission… food.
Fortunately, the hotel had a small, attached restaurant. The dry-erase placard out front advertised, “Today’s Special: Roasted Chicken Half” and “Casual Attire Welcome”.
Now, even as young as I was, I had been to a variety of restaurants and in my experience, “Casual Attire Welcome” usually meant, “Casual attire is OK, but make it business casual. Like Dockers and a polo shirt, not beach shorts and tank top. We’ll serve you, whatever you’re wearing, but please consider the Denny’s down the street.” My dad is not known for his ability to understand subtle hints.
He walked into the middle of the restaurant, turned to the first person he saw that looked like they worked there and with his arms spread wide said, “Is this casual enough?” I need to explain…
We hadn’t even gone to our hotel room from the check-in counter. I was wearing jeans, a T-shirt, and carrying my helmet and the sheep skin. [It’s not how it sounds. You put the sheep skin (with wool attached) on the motorcycle seat to a) keep from chafing and b) keep from burning yourself no the hot plastic seat.] Dad… well… Dad was wearing his motorcycle boots, jeans, leather chaps, a “this bird’s for you” Harley Davidson T-shirt, bandanna, and carrying his helmet and elephant hide jacket. It was quite a sight.
Of course, with their “Casual attire welcome” policy, we were immediately seated… as far from other paying customers as they could get us. In fact, we were basically behind the kitchen door. I just held my head and mumbled, “I’m a hitchhiker, he’s just feeding me.”
So we sit and ordered the special… since we are casually attired… or actually tired, I forget.
When dinner comes, I, who was taught manners by my father’s mother calmly cut into the chicken with knife and fork, preparatory to a good meal. My father, taught by the same woman, attacks his chicken with chainsaw and dynamite. I assume it was dynamite since the shrapnel ended up in a ring about 2 feet from the table… and in my hair and our drinks and at least one bit went down my shirt.
Now you ask, why was he (taught by the same woman remember) so vicious in his attack of the meal? Well, he was only in his early fifties, so I blame in on a rebellious stage that he hadn’t quite outgrown yet.