Cheap Eats

Brilliant ideas

Dempsey's Restaurant and Brewery in Petaluma
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le_chicken_farmer@yahoo.com

CHEAP EATS Here's what I did: I roasted a chicken in a cast iron skillet, then I cooked a batch of drop biscuits in the drippins in the pan. They already of course had butter in them, but when they were done I halved them, buttered them again, and dipped them in the chicken juice. I washed this down, and the chicken down, with an elegant French wine, straight from the bottle, and worried about one day dying in a plane crash.

The thing about my cooking partner, Boink, is that he has a vision. Read more »

Nostalgia

Zabb
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le_chicken_farmer@yahoo.com

CHEAP EATS Now that I am once again all chipper and cheerful and shit, albeit without wheels or money or, you know, prospects, I reckon I can return to writing about food. Anyway, I'm going to try.

My happiness is speculative. I figure, in a world with Alice Shaw and her biscuits in it, all things are not only possible, but likely. Read more »

Bottom biscuits

Yummie in Oakland
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le_chicken_farmer@yahoo.com

CHEAP EATS My pickup truck died and this time the death was fatal. The clutch, the transmission ... costs more to repair than I paid for the mighty 'mobile four years and 60,000 miles ago.

I rolled into a legal parking spot, got out and walked to a restaurant I like, sat on a bench outside with my head in my hands, and cried. I had $8 and change in my purse, on my lap, and one bar of battery left on my cell. None of my city friends have cars. I called my sister in Ohio.

"When your car dies," she said, "that's rock bottom. Read more »

Hope blows

Patxi's
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le_chicken_farmer@yahoo.com

CHEAP EATS Hope does not spring eternal. It springs for about three years and four months. Just kidding. It springs eternal. For me it does, but I kind of wish it didn't. Read more »

Smoke signals

Little Joe's on Mission Street
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le_chicken_farmer@yahoo.com

CHEAP EATS For those of you who are getting a vicarious thrill out of my nightmares d'amour ... don't! Nothing ever happens! It's like if James Thurber wrote Harlequins, or Jim Jarmusch made porn. Either one might be entertaining, sure, but comic relief is neither to the players themselves.

Short story long: dude contacts me, likes my looks, my writing, and barbecue in general. Read more »

Drama queen

Happy Garden
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le_chicken_farmer@yahoo.com

CHEAP EATS I did think about drinking myself to death, I admit, but it wasn't a serious thought. I just thought, I can drink and drink and drink ... but everyone knows I can't. I fall asleep after one. Sometimes I don't even finish it.

Still, you like to pretend, and there's a certain mystique to drinking oneself to death, like Billie Holliday. Or working oneself to death, like John Henry. Or crying oneself to death, like lots of people.

Mystique is good.

I know what you're thinking, but it won't work. Read more »

Daddy's girl

Guerilla Cafe
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le_chicken_farmer@yahoo.com

CHEAP EATS My dad was here, and, like a lot of daughters, I tried to impress him. Like a lot of fathers, he worries about me, his far out (and up and away) California girl. I just wanted to show him that, look, I'm fine. I'm doing well. No need to worry. All quiet on the western front.

I moved all my garbage from the front seat to the back of my crumbling, windshield-cracked, transmissionally-challenged vehicle, and went to get him at the airport, calling several times on my cell phone to let him know that, essentially, I had a cell phone. Read more »

Sex and salad

Saigon Cuisine in Santa Rosa
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le_chicken_farmer@yahoo.com

CHEAP EATS I was crying long before my cleaver touched the onion. The trick, when slicing onions for a salad, is to slice them so thin that they flop like fettuccini. I like lots, white and worming, in my salad. The onion, I've decided, is going to help me die.

A guy told me about The Tibetan Book of the Dead. On a date! I was going, mmm-hmm, mmm-hmm, and all the while I was thinking about onions. That will be the thing for me to focus on while I let go of my last breath. Read more »

Identity crisis

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le_chicken_farmer@yahoo.com

CHEAP EATS My answering machine almost always has a message on it for Brent Casserole. It's another machine, talking to my machine, and it says, in its robotically female voice, "This is a message for ... Brent Casserole. If this is not ... Brent Casserole ... please press two now."

Clearly, I am not ... Brent Casserole. Even I know this. And so the first time I heard it I picked up my phone and started pressing 2 2 2 2 2. Five times because nothing was happening. Read more »

Revenge

Mi Lindo Yucatan
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le_chicken_farmer@yahoo.com

CHEAP EATS Cut to wide-awake eyes in a moonlit room. In the dream, he could drive my funny little car that no one else but me can drive. He knew how to sweet talk it into first gear, and fearlessly came to complete stops at stop signs. Read more »