Tag Archives: tacos

Baseball and Taco Hell

AR-309269980Anyone who knows me even casually knows I’m a fanatical baseball fan. So when the Astros are in the post-season, don’t bother me at game time unless there’s fire, homicide-level blood loss, or a minimum of two high-level FBI agents present. Unless you’re my dad.

Twenty minutes before the start of Game 2 of the ALCS, I’m at my dad’s house settling in for the first pitch when he tosses me the keys and says, “Run get us tacos.” Gasp! Wait! What?! Now??!! Okay, it’s his house and he is my dad. I’m going for tacos.

I hop in the Dadmobile and race to the neighborhood Taco Cabana. I hit the drive thru for four chicken tacos thinking I’m in good shape with 12 minutes until game time and only two cars ahead of me. Then I realize I’ve entered Taco Hell!!

It took only seconds to realize the car in front of me has ordered 25 different individual items all special ordered. Surely this is proof that evil is real and Satan is active in our world. Obviously, it can only be Satan, Prince of Darkness, driving the solitary car in front of me. I roll up the windows in order to scream in private.

It has gotten to the point that I could have driven myself to Mexico, executed a quickie divorce, found and married a Mexican national, had his mother make me tacos, and driven back. Faster. I was now missing the start of the game. Okay, forget the divorce part. I could drive to Mexico, become a naturalized citizen, learned to make authentic tacos myself, and driven back. Faster. This was killing me.

Just as I’m picking up my phone to call 911 to report a gas leak inside Taco Cabana that has killed all the employees because there has been no sign of life inside for at least 15 minutes, the window opens and Satan receives his massive bag of food. Of course, he’s paying in what must be ancient coins from Somalia’s Gubon Desert and how the heck do you make change for that? One final, cleansing scream before I pull forward.

By the time I got back, the Astros were down by 1. Yes, I won the War on Tacos, but the Astros lost the game and the next one and all the rest of the series. Somewhere Satan is laughing and my season is over. From this point forward, tacos will always taste like disappointing loss.

Thank you to the Houston Astros for a great season, Jose Altuve and the Daily Herald for the pic.

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No Go Taco

spam tacoFood trucks are all the rage these days. Amsterdam has The Kitchen of The Unwanted Animal, a food truck cooking up pigeon, parakeet and “my little pony burgers,” and here in America, we have the Spamobile… Spam®? Yup. Google it because I can’t make that stuff up. While I’m more likely to eat deep fried dung beetles than stand in line at the Spamerican Tour truck for “Sunny’s Coconut Spam Spears with Spicy Pineapple Chutney” or even a spicy Spam breakfast burrito, I’m hipster enough to go for waffles or cupcakes or even investigate an authentic taco truck. Or so I thought.

I’m probably not a reputable authority on this matter (or really on any matter, if we’re going to be honest about things) because I have a deep, burning hatred for all things cilantro, which is all too often found in tacos, but I thought the taco spectrum started with chicken and ended with beef. That was before I found myself at Chico Chuck’s Taco Truck. I think Chico Chuck’s super power is the ability to take anything that even closely resembles a meat source and put it on a tortilla.

At some point during the discovery process, I made the mistake of asking what exactly is barbacoa. Let’s just establish right now that one should never ask a question unless you’re prepared for the answer. I shouldn’t have asked. I wasn’t prepared. According to Chico Chuck, barbacoa is the cooked head of a cow. Think Heloise the Heifer meets Marie Antoinette. Everything from the cowbell on up gets tossed into what I’m guessing is a cow head shaped crock pot — brains, eyeballs, tongue, teeth. In my overworked imagination, you can hear one last, tragic, disembodied “mooooo” as the lid is slammed onto the pot. If there was ever a more convincing argument to “Eat More Chikn,” I’m not sure it would beat out barbacoa.

The take-away from all this is to seriously consider consuming anything from a place that is, by its very nature, a flight risk or one that can be impounded for health code violations. Remember, too, that antacids can overcome a lot of things, but not your long- or short-term memories. And really, peanut butter sandwiches are not a bad thing!

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