Wednesday, January 26, 2022


There were more skeevy types out last night than I expected, and at one point the burger joint was slightly crowded. My friend shot down my lovely theory with a cold dose of reality. I had speculated that these were all men celebrating Burn's Night; they had enjoyed the whisky, and tolerated the doggerel -- whisky makes even crappy poetry overlookable -- but had drawn the line at haggis, and said "stuff this garbage, we're going out for something actually edible". On this hand I have haggis, and on this one a burger. The choice is easy. He remarked that we were probably the only two men there who know who Robert Burns was.

What is peculiar is that, seeing as haggis is the most famous specialty of Caledonian cuisine, there is not a single restaurant in San Francisco which offers it as a regular menu item.

The special tonight is haggis? Okay, we're leaving.

There are TWO terms for haggis in Chinese: 羊肚雜碎布丁 ('yeung tou jaap seui pou ding') and 肉餡羊肚 ('yiuk haam yeung tou'). And while the Chinese are infinitely curious, gustatorily, haggis is not on the menu of any of the restaurants in Chinatown. Which isn't odd.
They are curious, but not self-destructively so.

You can indeed make a vegetarian version of haggis. Easier to digest, and a more pleasing mouthfeel. But if it tastes the same, why would you want to?
Tofaggis? Hagofu? Dear lord no.

I've read Beowolf in the original, and in translation, as well as several Icelandic sagas ditto.
All read better in tranlation. It's the same with Bobby Burns poetry.

There are reasons why you seldom see an obese Scotsman.
If you do, he was probably raised on English food.

The singing at the karaoke place was, appropriate for the evening, perfectly horrid. But the hot water (my friend had Irish whiskey) was good, and we had cigarillos on the way to the bus stop. Earlier I had smoked the last pipe of the evening.


Several of my friends say that haggis rocks, it's the bomb, nothing like a good haggis, why it's wonderful, celebratory, an event, memorable. In fact, they fondly eat haggis, or happily remember the last few times they ate haggis. I am baffled.

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