Friday, February 13, 2009

First the fire, now everything else...

On Saturday half the state caught on fire, people died and all the things melted. On Tuesday I went into a cafe/bar down the street, it's not my favourite place, it's a little bit fancy and up itself, but they make a chicken burger that I love, the only reason I go there (apart from the big comfortable booths, attractive staff and proximity to my house) is the fucking chicken burger. It's not complicated, crumbed chicken in a turkish bread roll with coleslaw, tabasco sauce and salt, but it's the way they do it. The chicken is organic or grain fed or something, the breadcrumbs are that Japanese brand, and the coleslaw sauce is half yogurt/half mayonnaise with dill and it's just so damn good. Anyway I go in, order my coffee and my burger and the waitress tells me it's not on the menu anymore because the apprentice chefs hate making it and the other chefs hate it because they put so much effort into the rest of the menu, and all anybody ever orders is the ten dollar chicken burger. They've replaced the burger with some kind of pork roll which she tries to sell me but I'm new to eating meat and I don't know if I like pork, so I order a bacon and egg sandwich (yes, I know, bacon is made of pig too but it's not the same!). Then the chef comes over and says, 'You wouldn't believe how many customers have complained about the burger'. 'Oh but I would', I say. He tells me that one customer wants to start a petition, which I offer to sign, and another customer has done a deal with one of the other chefs, where he can have the burger if he orders it three days in advance. I suggest a burger tax where the cost goes up by a couple of dollars and every time someone orders one, that money goes straight to the guy who has to make it. The chef nods and you can see he's actually thinking about it. My bacon and egg sandwich arrives, I put tabasco on it and it's fine but it's not my burger. My friend Richie comes in and finds me slumped against the bar, he tells me that he tried to call me and warn me that they'd taken the burger off the menu but I missed the call. I want to cry. First the fires, now this, it's the week from hell.

On Wednesday night my friend Penny died of cancer and the next day I went over to her house with my brother and had drinks with everyone who loved her. Her dead body was in the lounge room in a hospital bed, which was really confronting for about ten seconds and then it seemed totally normal. We sat around and cried and laughed and had cups of tea and red wine. It was sad and I'm going to miss her but it was also great... Maybe I can learn to make my own fucking chicken burger.

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