As already noted, I enjoyed the conversation and the presentation at the Monday ELI lunch immensely. But the event was marred by the appearance by an old and relentless nemesis, the Conference Chicken Breast with Something Like Mushroom Sauce. At least the servers tell us it’s chicken breast. But They say every weird meat around tastes like chicken, don’t They? I’m invariably reminded of the fried chicken urban legend, about the chain that changed its name because it was selling meat harvested from genetically manipulated organisms. Engineered “chickens” kept alive by tubes — without feet, feathers or beaks.
And I love how the waiter says it comes with “shitake” mushrooms. I don’t give a shitake what you say, it might as well be soggy cardboard.
Every conference I attend it’s exactly the same meal. Same meat, same side dishes, same beverages, same dessert. Same groggy unpleasant after-meal sensation. If the conference goes another day, they serve the roast beef. I won’t go into the roast beef.
If you are organizing a conference, I beseech you. Lay out a deli table. Order pizza. Invite some hot dog cart vendors into the hall. See if you can get the Salvation Army to set up a soup line. But please lay off the chicken and grey sauce.
Thankfully, the next day marked the culmination of an epic quest by guerreros de los pescados. As Alan has already announced, we did indeed triumph, achieving fleeting transcendence from base hunger. Bryan came too, and he patiently endured a slew of questions from both of us about his disturbingly good ARG presentation.
In an awe-inspiring culinary kharmic battle between the Conference Chicken and the Fish Tacos, I am happy to report that the forces of good have prevailed. Let joyful salsa song ring out across the land.