In the genes

Pub date November 7, 2006
WriterL.E. Leone
SectionCheap EatsSectionFood & Drink

CHEAP EATS Hold on a second. Let me call and ask her …
OK, it’s OK to tell you now: Crawdad de la Cooter is pregnant! I had to keep it a secret for a long time because that’s what pregnant people do to you — they tell everyone, and they tell everyone not to tell anyone. So we all go around bursting at the seams and looking at each other, wondering who knows what. But now I can write restaurant reviews and songs about it and everything. Crawdad’s going to be a mama! Her new guy, Crawguy de la Peter, is going to be a daddy! And I get to be the well-paid live-in nanny!
Well, right now they kind of have it in their head to raise their own child, and I can’t say that I blame them exactly, but I’d really rather do it myself. So my strategy is to make all the people around here go very quietly crazy, so that they lose their concentration and mess up their computers, and then they’ll all be calling on Crawguy all the time to fix them and Crawdad to fix their heads, because that’s what he does and she does respectfully. Business will boom, lots of money, no time. Enter the chicken farmer.
It’s a fact that kids love chickens and farmers, and although it’s also a fact that I’m a witch now too (because I say so), and everyone knows that witches eat children, it is not a fact that I do. I have never, for example, eaten a child.
On the other hand, I do remember how to change diapers, because don’t forget that I come from a big family, and I was one of the older ones. Wait — maybe I made this up. Let me call my mom.
Ah, she claims I didn’t change a lot of little siblings’ diapers — just my own, apparently, when I was a baby. Still, I do love poop, as my readers well know. Several of my brothers and sisters are or have been nannies and/or baby-sitters — possibly, in many cases, parents — so you gotta figure it’s in my blood.
Anyway, I thought I would talk this all over with the happy Craw Couple over Vietnamese food, and they wisely invited Ms. Trotwood, their fixer-upper and my new best friend. We talked it all over and decided to get imperial rolls, hot and sour shrimp soup, and some kind of chicken in a coconut curry thingy, except it was all white meat, and then that led to a long, intense philosophical discussion over whether we liked the white meat or the dark meat better.
Me and Trotwood: dark. Crawdad and Crawguy: white. Which made me marvel (unfortunately out loud) at how challenging their life together is going to be, the poor crustaceans, because even if you’re perfectly matched in every other way, as Crawdad and Crawguy are, the foremost factor for determining long-term compatibility, in my book, is one of you’s gotta prefer the dark meat, and the other light. Doesn’t matter which is which, but you have to have that as a foundation.
Unless … hmm, if you both go for the breast, yet you have a kid together, and that kid turns out against all genetic odds to be a leg-and-a-thigh kind of kid, then there may still be hope for your whole chickens and therefore your marriage. Since DNA is going to work against you, however, it will have to be a matter of nurturance.
Enter chicken farmer.
You know me, I would still be going on about my indispensability to their family’s happiness, even after our food came and was excellent, if it weren’t for the Interventional Wisdom and Distractive Powers of dear Ms. Trotwood. Brilliantly, she dug from her purse a little gift card for Victoria’s Secret and gave it to me.
This was the perfect thing. Not only did it distract me from making an even bigger fool of myself, but it happens that I am just about to almost actually need a bra.
I forgot to say two of the things we got: spicy grilled beef salad, which was probably everyone’s favorite dish, cause it had mint and cilantro and jalapeños and “smoke flavored dressing.” The other one, grilled pork over smashed together vermicelli, was probably the least popular, but I liked it.
By the way, have I mentioned the name of my new favorite Vietnamese restaurant? SFBG
PHO 84
Mon.–Fri., 11 a.m.–3 p.m. and 5–9 p.m.; Sat., noon–9 p.m.; Sun., 5–9 p.m.
354 17th St., Oakl.
(510) 832-1338
Takeout available
Beer and wine
Wheelchair accessible