I normally refrain from using this blog for personal ramblings, but this morning's news announced what is a deep and personal loss for me--the A and J Tasty Pig in Snelleville burned down last night.
Although I have lived within a mile of the A and J Tasty Pig for 25 years, I ate there only once--sausage biscuit...it was OK.
But I have always been in awe of the restaurant's name, its complete openess to what it was you would be eating if you went there. Pig.
"Pass the pig," is not a phrase you hear at a lot of dinner tables. In fact, about the only time you hear "pig" associated with the food is at a pig roast, and anyone who's been to one of those knows the futility of being coy about the animal of honor. It's there and in your face.
We're not so squeamish about chicken. We name lots of restaurants after it and use the same word whether speaking of the bird or the food. Same with fish. It would not be unusual to come across a restaurant named "Captain Billy's Fish Fry" or "Holy Mackerel" (especially in Florida where I think there is state law or at least strong guidelines from the Chamber of Commerce that restaurants must be given dumb names). We are so open about the association between creature and food in the case of fish that when eating one of the most ubiquitous of the species, the tuna, we add on the word fish just for good measure. As in "Give me the tuna FISH salad, yeah you got me right, I'm eating a fish! You hear that over there in the corner booth, I'm eating FISH!"
So why the taboo against admitting that we are eating a cow? I've never seen an A and J Tasty Cow. The only restaurant that uses cows in its ads is Chick-Fil-A, a chicken joint. They are mainly trying to remind us what we will be served if we go to MacDonalds or Burger King.
I pity the English as a Second Language teacher who has to cover this. Meanwhile, I'm real sorry that the A&J Tasty Pig burned down, even though I don't go there.