Conference Chicken – A Lifelong Vendetta and Blood Oath

Conference food cliche

My friend Jason told me recently that food blogging is going to blow porn off the web.

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.

We finally made it... They were playing King Tubby stuff on the stereo
Ceviche Simply unreal

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.

About Brian

I am a Strategist and Discoordinator with UBC's Centre for Teaching, Learning and Technology. My main blogging space is Abject Learning, and I sporadically update a short bio with publications and presentations over there as well...
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7 Responses to Conference Chicken – A Lifelong Vendetta and Blood Oath

  1. Ariadna says:

    Dessert is the most important part – when I cater lunches at work I always feel bad if there isn’t enough dessert to go around or if the stuff isn’t sweet enough.

  2. Brian says:

    Ariadna – I applaud your attention to detail, and know how much people love their sugar treats. It probably also helps people perk up a bit to counter that post-lunch sluggishness. Personally, I’m not a big sweet eater, but I’m certainly in the minority.

  3. Shaula Evans says:

    Try to get your conferences booked at the Banff School of the Arts.

    My husband and I attended a conference there in 2003, and the food was outstanding.

    In fact, we were there for the Paddy Crean International Stage Combat Workshop, so not only was the food excellent, the quantities were sufficient to feed 3, all-you-can-eat, gourmet-quality meals to hordes of ravenous stage combat practitioners who had been taking physical combat workshops for 11 hours each day. And, they are gracious and helpful about accommodating any kind of special diet.

    But let me tell you: it sure spoils you for the rubber chicken circuit.

  4. Brian says:

    No need to convince me to go to the Banff School — though you just gave me a great reason.

  5. Chris Jay says:

    That, my friend, is a beautiful-looking plate of fish tacos. Seriously: Set as desktop background? Check.

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