Flip the Bird This Thanksgiving

Coincidentally, Clammy-Condom Chowder Claims Cloud Courts

On the other hand, everyone knows that if you want to dine for free, you put a bee or a Band-aid or harissa into your food, and the restaurant will comp you. There's also the public misconception that if you live in Stanton you're probably a whore and might very well have condoms stuck in your teeth for days before noticing it. It's a complex case, I tell you, more than Perry Mason ever had to deal with.

But you don't need to sit on the sidelines while this courtroom drama unfolds, not when your own household junior forensics team can spring into action. Here at the hacienda, for example, reading about this case raised several questions we realized we could answer in our own kitchen:

Do condoms float in chowder?

Even if you were distracted—watching the Victoria's Secret lingerie special, for instance—how could you not notice a condom on your spoon?

If you miss the spoon part, is it humanly possible to put a condom in your mouth, without knowing to a certitude that you'd just put a condom in your mouth?

Does a condom really have—to use a food-industry term—the same "mouth feel" as a clam? If a condom can be confused with a clam, can you confuse oyster sauce with pearl jam?

For our test condoms we used the Class-Act "ribbed and sensitive" unit and a nonlatex Durex Avanti, in case the different materials affect buoyancy.

I'm sorry to say that I haven't been to a McCormick & Schmick's lately—not since I tried the "Waiter, my dick's in my soup" ploy to eat for free there—and don't know how thick their chowder is. So we conducted the test with two soups of divergent viscosity, the brothy Campbell's Honey Roasted Chicken With Golden Potatoes and Snow's condensed New England Clam Chowder with only one-third the recipe's milk added.

Each condom responded identically in the soups, though the Class-Act's lubricant infused the Campbell's broth with an aftertaste that did not converse well with our chablis. The Avanti rode a little lighter on the spoon, making the Class-Act more apparent there, as it also was in the mouth, where its ribs all but announced, "Here I am, sailor!"

On to our questions:

Did it float in the bowl? In the chicken soup, indeed it did, both brands right to the top. But in the Snow's, which I suspect is more akin to the M&S chowder, it lay submerged like a threatening U-Boat. So, yes, you could very well eat from a compromised chowder bowl without knowing. But on the spoon? The condom was so obvious when snagged—it overhangs the spoon, and you have to balance it so it doesn't topple out—that even models' asses on parade all over the once-proud CBS network could not distract us from it. And you would need a mouth the size of a golf hole not to feel it going in. Neither did we need to conduct a discussion with friends before determining there was a friggin' condom in our mouths. It is a large ring of latex. There is no food in nature like it. Anyone remember the condom machine in the Coach House's old men's room, with the message scratched on it: "Gee, this gum tastes awful"?

Be sure to call the Court TV network today and make sure they cover this important trial. And please have a safe and rollicking holiday weekend.

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