It Tastes Like Chicken BUT IT’S NOT CHICKEN

Growing up I used to spend a few weeks out of every summer in Austin, Texas, with my Mimi and Poppy (aka Melba and Cecil – yep, that’s right Melba and Cecil.) I absolutely loved my time there. Austin was (and still is) my favorite part of Texas. Plus, my Mimi had all the makings of a legendary grandmother. She loved each of her grandchildren unabashedly. And she was crafty. She could make dresses for my dolls, mend my clothes, and whip up a mean pie.

One of my favorite things to do when I was visiting was to play with the a girl about my age that lived next door. The neighbors had an open door policy and I would spend hours over there. We loved to read tales of Mrs. Piggle Wiggle, check out their bee hives, and play with the dozens of bunnies that were caged in their backyard.

Sometimes I couldn’t be troubled to leave for lunch and so they’d welcome me to their table. As their guest, I knew that I had to be on my best behavior.

One day as I was finishing my lunch, I said proudly, “This is the best fried chicken sandwich I’ve ever tasted.”

And my friend’s mother quickly explained, “Honey, it might taste like chicken, but that is not chicken. It is rabbit.”

And immediately a light bulb went off in my head and I realized I was eating one of the fluffy white bunnies from their backyard. One of the bunnies that I had spent hours admiring.

In complete shock and disapproval, I bolted out of my seat and towards the door (needless to say, without properly excusing myself). And with a flair for the dramatic, I let the door slam as I removed myself from the presence of “the bunny killers.”

I probably would have never returned. Fortunately (or unfortunately depending on how you look at it) Mimi hadn’t made me return with an apology for my “inexcusable” behavior.

Don’t know why but that is one of my favorite stories of my youth. When I reflect on it I can so vividly recall a younger, more innocent version of myself. A version of myself that had a black-and-white sense of right and wrong. A version of myself that acted passionately before carefully measuring the consequences. A version of myself that wasn’t constantly gripped by the need for approval.

And even though I can appreciate the woman I’ve become, I sometimes would love to venture through my 33 year-old days with that lens.

What is one of your favorite childhood memories? Why do you think that memory sticks out to you?

PS – I still don’t eat rabbit. It might taste like chicken. BUT IT’S NOT CHICKEN.

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Lindsey has a sincere love for her precious dogs Molly and Maisy, a good red wine and the Delta Sky Club. She spends her days (and some nights) laboring to end childhood hunger at Feed the Children and to gather, equip and unleash women at IF:Gathering.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • tam

    THAT is funny. im sorry…i dont care who you are, that there is funny.

    i wouldve done the exact same thing. well, i may have fainted eventually. then i wouldve saved all the bunnies.
    My recent post what would your sign say?

    • I know. I totally should have freed the bunnies. But candidly I have never been much of an activist 😉

      • tam

        if i were mean, id send you a rabbits foot. but im not mean. so, i'll have jenni clayville do that.
        My recent post what would your sign say?

        • not mean? if you say so!

          i never understood why rabbit's feet were good luck. kinda creepy if you ask me.

          • tam

            i used to have a rabbits foot, dyed green, when i was a little girl. id use its little toenails, that were still long (im near puking at this second) and would scratch my arms and cheeks with it cuz it tickled.

            uhhhh, yah. that is my creepiest on line confession. ever.

            im gonna retreat to a corner in fetal position now…….
            My recent post what would your sign say?

          • disturbing…but you are still lovable.

          • and you do authenticity and transparency like no one i know. this just proves that. 😉

  • jessi

    Oh my goodness! That reminds me… I grew up on a farm, and my dad raised cattle for beef. When a newborn calf arrived we'd always give it a name because to us kids it was like a pet. When my husband (more of a city boy) and I (country girl) first started dating he got to witness the naming of one of the cows. He would say hi to the cow every time he came over, but one day it just wasn't there. Needless to say when my mom has us over for meatloaf/hamburgers Billy never fails to mention that we are probably eating TinkerBell.

    • Poor Tinkerbell!

      • Oh, and did I mention Tinkerbell was a BOY. My 3 yr old niece named him. 🙂

        BTW I love that you shared this funny/horrific (???) story. I can so relate to your quote…. "A version of myself that wasn’t constantly gripped by the need for approval."
        My recent post Stockings with Pizazz

  • I would have cried – the same way I did when I realized "Curly" the goat was our main course for Sunday dinner at our friend's house! We raised goats, but only for milk, our friends also raised goats…but for more than milk!
    And no, goat really doesn't taste like chicken!
    My recent post Getting to know YOU!

    • Whenever I eat goat (which doesn't happen a lot), I use the Spanish name "cabrito" it just sounds better. 🙂

  • I'm still blinking. Going oh my. Poor bunny.
    My recent post Washing Away Ungratefulness

    • Poor bunny! Just realized I have another poor bunny story I'll have to share someday.

  • "Honey, it might taste like chicken, but that is not chicken. It is rabbit."
    [cute bunny pic]

    That is priceless. I totally chuckled.

    "A version of myself that wasn’t constantly gripped by the need for approval."

    Amen sister, amen. Once we see who we are in the eyes of God, the need for others approval just simply disappears.
    My recent post Get out of the Boat!

  • We have friends who raised chickens. They had a small group dinner, and she served chicken soup. One of the ladies commented that it was the best soup she had. She was then told that the chicken had been killed that morning. She stopped eating at that point.

    Store-bought, ok – fresh – couldn't wrap her mind around.

    • Another weird thing about me – can't eat meat with bones in it. It grosses me out. Especially chicken bones.

  • I've never had rabbit. My husband and a good friend of ours goes to a little community about 30 minutes away where our friend grew up to eat rabbit stew. They say it tastes like chicken, but they come home with a woodsy (aka not so great) smell. The volunteer fire department there does it twice a winter for a fundraiser.

  • oh my dang, that's hilarious. i can't believe you ate a bunny sandwich!
    My recent post i still can’t believe you even show up

  • I had a similar experience with a goat. Seriously, I was eating appetizers at a Christmas Eve party, and I exclaimed that the meat was tasty–what was it? The hostess said, "It's Dinner." I replied, "I *know* it's dinner, but what is it?" She persisted, "It's Dinner." … and then I recalled the little brown goat named dinner that had lived out in the back yard.

    Yeah. Traumatic.

    One of my favorite childhood memories stems from when my Mom's diamond became dislodged from her ring and went missing. Dad and I sorted through the junk in the canister for the house's central vacuum system for what seemed like FOREVER (probably 5 minutes if I was only 4 or so). Mom was teaching a smocking class upstairs when I ran triumphantly into the room with her diamond in my hand. Despite my interrupting her class, I can still remember all the smiles, including the feel of my own smile that moment. 🙂

    • I can picture that. Love it!

      You also are the only one that has answered the question. Feel like you should get special kudos for that!

  • This was classic!! hilarious….

  • DeWayne

    I love the idea of fearless, unfiltered childhood. When I was a kid, I took my bike to the local creek and determined I would jump it. It seemed like a very realistic goal that would make me pretty much the baddest kid on the block. I rode hard toward the small gulley, pulled up on my bike but it didn't work out the way I thought it would. My bike quickly disappeared from under me, leaving me flying solo before landing head first on the opposite bank. Yes, I crossed the creek but I could barely remember it. I'd never try that today.
    My recent post A Personal God

    • Ouch! I would never have done that. I have never been much of a risk-taker. I'm always admired that in others.

  • We raised the occasional calf for beef (and sometimes pigs, turkeys and chickens), but only once did we raise/butcher rabbits. Mom drew the line at cooking them, so it was pointless.

    We love homegrown beef though. Our family saying at the dinner table was "pretty good for an ol' dead cow."

    It was hard for "city folk" to take sometimes ..
    My recent post Old dogs .. er broads .. can learn new tricks!

  • First off, I just found my way to your blog…love it.

    I also love that you ate the Cadbury Bunny. It totally could’ve been worse, though. If you would’ve been in NC where I grew up it may have been opossum. 🙂

  • OH MY GOODNESS… soo funny! I needed a good laugh today!! I love how your writing makes me feel as if I was there with you!

    Growing-up I would say we were lower-middle class so eating out was a big deal! When I was 9 we were at a restaurant and I was dressed in my beautiful Easter dress! As I walked back to my seat after using the bathroom I strutted as if I was in a fashion show. Boy did I get amazing smiles and responses from people at the restaurant! Little did I know that my "beautiful dress" was tucked in my tights to let everyone see my backside! Good times!!! But man did I love that dress! 🙂

  • One of my favorite childhood memories was when I was 4, or so. It was Christmas time and my mom was bathing my sister & I. We had just gotten out of the tub and were wrapped in towels. There was a knock at the front door and, after answering it, my dad told us to come see. A group of people from our church were caroling in our neighborhood and it was our house’s turn. They started singing and I was so surprised I dropped my towel. The sight of me standing there in the front door stark naked made everyone laugh and they couldn’t finish the song. I love Christmas carols, but I keep my clothes on for them now.

  • patriciazell

    One of my favorite childhood memories involves my Aunt Melba. My family lived in Columbus, Ohio, but every summer, we would pile into our station wagon and make the trek to Mt. Airy, N. C. where we would visit my paternal grandmother. She lived with her oldest daughter, Melba, and I loved visiting there. I can still smell the muskiness of the humidity of mid to late summer in North Carolina. I loved Aunt Melba's house–the main bathroom was so huge and had two sinks! But most of all, I loved my aunt's voice–soft with that beautiful Southern drawl. This Yankee sure did glory in those summer visits.
    My recent post #33 THE DOING OF BELIEVING: FAITH (1)

  • Dave

    I'll happily eat most critters and have sampled some fairly exotic ones but once I know it's name it's safe from me.

  • nooooo she didn't – oh my gosh! you ate thumper. Thumper! The next thing you'll be eating Bambi… oh the travesty 🙂 I love this….
    My recent post Will They Laugh if I Call You Daddy? Growing Up With a Gay Father: Day 1

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  • Wasser

    ahhhhh so you are not a movie at eating mr. easter bunny!

    • Not a novice at all! 🙂

  • Wasser

    WOW I meant NOVICE at eating the bunny:)