Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Eat Me!

Americans are definitely a lot more squeamish about the origins of our food than Mexicans are.  Probably most of us would be vegetarians if the alternative was killing our own meat.  And when it comes to marketing, we're especially coy - our fast food chains are personified by clowns, colonels and kings, without an animal in sight.  Chik-Fil-A's logo kind of flirts with the idea of a chicken, but its ads all star an animal not available on its menu: the cow.

Oh, but not Mexico.  Not only do most places here make no bones about the fact that you'll be eating cute, dead animals, but the animals beckoning you to come eat them are often deliriously happy about this - so happy, they forget themselves and behave entirely inappropriately.

Take this little piggie, for instance.  Fork in hand, bib around his neck, ready to tear into some pork carnitas.  Except the apple in his mouth raises a question: is he diner, or dinner?


This smiley little fella is ready to give you a big, welcoming hug - right before they slit his throat and dump him in with his friends in the roasting tray above his head.


"Ground up and grilled...I'm delicious!"


At Bolillo Relleno, you can have your choice of cow, pig or chicken - and the way they're smiling and waving - "Pick me! Pick me!" - you'll want to try 'em all.  The fact that they appear to be knee-deep on blood just attests to their freshness.


Sometimes, happy cartoon pigs are too small and weak to make it to the slaughterhouse on their own, so they rely on other happy cartoon pigs to help them along - and share a few laughs on the way.  We're not sure what they're called in Spanish, but in German, these helpers are known as Sonderkommandos.


Who doesn't love hot-tubbing? Is he sweating because it's hot, or because he can see an enormous pan of spiced pig-meat out of the corner of his eye? 


This billboard for the Orwellian-named Pollo Feliz ("Happy Chicken") chain shows a healthy young bird exulting in victory over his feeble rivals.  His prize?  To be flayed open and oven-roasted, just like the previous winner on the plate next to him.  In your face, numbers 2 and 3!


"Pollito con papas" has a double meaning: "chicken with potatoes," or, as the picture shows, "little chicken with parents."  So this ad, too, has a double meaning: it either reminds us that the dead chicken we're about it eat was once somebody's baby, or that eating adult chickens leaves behind a nest full of adorable, helpless orphans.


In this economy, a hard-working chicken will take any job just to make ends meet, including waiting tables at Rico Pollo, where he'll deliver his dead, dismembered sister to your table, piping hot.  Don't forget to tip.


We started feeling sad about all the animals being slaughtered, but then the logo for Pollos Ray reminded us that, after you twist off their heads, little dead chicks get to live in Heaven with the baby Jesus...and we were happy again.


"We who are about to die salute you!"


And it's not just animals.  At Tamales Karla, a joyful, smiling tamale will serve you tamales.


Okay, now it's getting out of hand.  This appears to be a smiling, happy sandwich eating a fucking sandwich.


Oh, hell no...

8 comments:

Jeffrey Dahmer said...

Reading this gave me an appetite

Anonymous said...

I'm really missing the visage of a happy pig inviting me to eat a chunk of his deep fried skin right about now. The food here stinks.

Anonymous said...

your best post yet

Anonymous said...

your best post yet

Anonymous said...

This one was so funny.... are all those pictures from Queretaro?

C.M. Mayo said...

The congitive dissonance is giving me empacho!

PS Pigs dancing w guitars at Red, Hot & Blues BBQ chain (my fave) http://www.redhotandblue.com/
Tennesee highway style.

Anonymous said...

Mmmmmm.... torta de panda...

Andrea said...

There was one that I passed every day on my way home for a few years that consists of a proactive pig who is not only smiling while he stands in a pot, he's also holding a spoon and doing the stirring.

The same place also has one of a chicken holding a machine gun (the business is called "Rampollo").