Sira-sira store: Chicken Little

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Friday, August 15, 2014


MY MIND, which has been idle for days, recently became the workshop for devilish thoughts.

My nephew Pannon panicked when he heard that his favorite crispy chicken was not available in his favorite fast food, or was available but too bad, kid, “the last piece just got sold out.”

“They have little chicken items, uncle,” the precocious boy told me with the anxiety of a man who just lost millions to a Facebook scam.

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“Yep, chicken little,” I said.

“That’s the movie—I meant real chicken.”

I meant it, too. Imagine young people running around, looking for their favorite chicken fry. In the movie—Chicken Little—the title character is a nervous chick with the penchant of shouting and ringing the school bell as a warning that something odd is happening. And when everybody in town is in panic, it turns out the emergency was a false alarm.

It turns out to be something right out of the pages of Aesop’s fable “The Boy Who Cried Wolf.” But like all happy-ending-stories, the townspeople do see the odd thing that scared Chicken Little: aliens looking for their lost boy. And the day is saved.

The scarcity of chicken supply followed the scarcity of garlic supply. What will they think of next? Scarcity of pork (all salted away in the pork barrel scam, I presume) or onion or ham?

According to the news on TV, there is ample supply of dressed chicken, but like Chicken Little who at first was the only one who could see the aliens, the chicken supply can hardly be found in the market.

A neighborhood grill now sells its roasted chicken for P200, and as an effect of this painful cause, their sales have really gone down. At this neighborhood’s wet market—actually just a few stalls on one side of the street—one woman said that she buys one whole chicken and cuts it up to last her a week’s cooking.

“One chicken goes a long way, huh,” I told her.

“Mao nay chicken feed. Pakan-on nakog chicken akong pamilya, pero ginagmay lang,” she replied.

The last time I checked, Pannon’s favorite fast food said that they have lots of fried chicken to sell, which means the crisis is over. Still, a third-rate columnist like me wonders what will fall from the sky next.

I feel like I am Chicken Little, looking at the sky, waiting for the aliens to reveal themselves, and in panic, alarm everyone that there is a problem around us. I feel as if aliens are playing games with consumers, making coffee or garlic disappear, then reappear like the space ship in the movie Chicken Little.

Doesn’t that make you feel vulnerable? We are not the puppets, but the commodities are. They obey the command of the invisible hands that pull the strings to make the leg of ham go this way, or the head of garlic duck under the pantry or the chicken drumstick to run to the farthest corner, all to hide from the consumer. But I am just too happy that everything is back to normal according to the news and that there will be no more case of disappearing commodities. I don’t want to ring the school bell.My mind, which has been idle for days, recently became the workshop for devilish thoughts.

My nephew Pannon panicked when he heard that his favorite crispy chicken was not available in his favorite fast food, or was available but too bad, kid, “the last piece just got sold out.”

“They have little chicken items, uncle,” the precocious boy told me with the anxiety of a man who just lost millions to a Facebook scam.

“Yep, chicken little,” I said.

“That’s the movie—I meant real chicken.”

I meant it, too. Imagine young people running around, looking for their favorite chicken fry. In the movie—Chicken Little—the title character is a nervous chick with the penchant of shouting and ringing the school bell as a warning that something odd is happening. And when everybody in town is in panic, it turns out the emergency was a false alarm.

It turns out to be something right out of the pages of Aesop’s fable “The Boy Who Cried Wolf.” But like all happy-ending-stories, the townspeople do see the odd thing that scared Chicken Little: aliens looking for their lost boy. And the day is saved.

The scarcity of chicken supply followed the scarcity of garlic supply. What will they think of next? Scarcity of pork (all salted away in the pork barrel scam, I presume) or onion or ham?

According to the news on TV, there is ample supply of dressed chicken, but like Chicken Little who at first was the only one who could see the aliens, the chicken supply can hardly be found in the market.

A neighborhood grill now sells its roasted chicken for P200, and as an effect of this painful cause, their sales have really gone down. At this neighborhood’s wet market—actually just a few stalls on one side of the street—one woman said that she buys one whole chicken and cuts it up to last her a week’s cooking.

“One chicken goes a long way, huh,” I told her.

“Mao nay chicken feed. Pakan-on nakog chicken akong pamilya, pero ginagmay lang,” she replied.

The last time I checked, Pannon’s favorite fast food said that they have lots of fried chicken to sell, which means the crisis is over. Still, a third-rate columnist like me wonders what will fall from the sky next.

I feel like I am Chicken Little, looking at the sky, waiting for the aliens to reveal themselves, and in panic, alarm everyone that there is a problem around us. I feel as if aliens are playing games with consumers, making coffee or garlic disappear, then reappear like the space ship in the movie Chicken Little.

Doesn’t that make you feel vulnerable? We are not the puppets, but the commodities are. They obey the command of the invisible hands that pull the strings to make the leg of ham go this way, or the head of garlic duck under the pantry or the chicken drumstick to run to the farthest corner, all to hide from the consumer. But I am just too happy that everything is back to normal according to the news and that there will be no more case of disappearing commodities. I don’t want to ring the school bell.

ober.khok@yahoo.com

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on August 16, 2014.

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