Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Yes, We Have Spicy Cole Slaw

I just read about the Mekong giant catfish, which can top out at 10' in length. They're critically endangered in their native Thailand.

If I was the King of Thailand, I'd take up the cause of this gentle giant and trumpet the natural bounty of the mother nation. I'd hold a news conference and wade into the Mekong River in my regal robes. My assistants would hold one of the giant catfish, flapping wildly, so I could put my hand on its dorsal fin and make a pronouncement...

Today, this fish is our most important citizen _ not just this fish, but all his brothers and sisters wherever they may be swimming in the 1,500 navigable miles of the Mekong River in Thailand, which I might add, are perfect for your next rafting or kayaking vacation. We are blessed by nature's bounty to count such a large creature among our native fauna, and a tasty creature, I might add. I was dining on giant catfish last night and--

(assistant whispers something)

I'd like to clarify that last statement. I was not dining on giant catfish, it was pad Thai with sauteed tofu. And now, as King of Thailand, I proclaim this fish--

(fish thrashes violently)

This fish, which could be fried nicely or diced and breaded into several hundred sticks _ put some hot sauce on there, a little red beans and rice--

(assistant whispers something)

THIS FISH is hereby off limits.

(the fish has stopped moving)

It's dead, your majesty.

What a pity. I'm speechless.

(the assistants wrap the fish in a giant newspaper)

I'd like to direct you all to the press tent. Lunch will be served in 20 minutes.

I've never eaten something I've covered before. How should I feel?

I think this is what they call "new journalism."

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