June 16, 2005 - The Chicken Or the Ed?
There is a business in town that goes by the name of the Machine Gun Deli. It is most likely named after the infamous 1920’s gangster named, Machine Gun Kelly. The business is located on Mission Street just west of the freeway. A sign on the side of the business says, “home of the Killer Chicken.” It was the word ‘Killer’ that was photographed for yesterday’s Wednesday Where Is It contest. And, believe it or not, there were a whole bunch of subscribers who were able to identify the word "Killer" as part of a sign in front of the business.
The dedicated staff of edhat.com has often wondered exactly what Killer Chicken really is.
We were curious why it was “the” Killer Chicken, and not just “Killer Chicken”. Is there only one chicken? Does he live there? Is he a dangerous chicken with big pointy teeth?
If it was just “killer” chicken, then we would know for sure that “killer” was an adjective, a throwback to thirty years ago when “killer” was a synonym for “cool”, “awesome”, “gnarly”, “bitchin’”, “great”, or “boss”.
The dedicated staff, willing to try anything once, went down to the Machine Gun Deli to get some chicken and some answers. There is plenty of parking at the killer chicken habitat.
We parked in the back of the building that used to be either a temporary structure or a loading dock. It has an old-west facade and a ramp up to the entrance.
Once inside, you are can’t miss the chicken. It’s just to the right of the entrance, stacked tightly inside the hot food display case – the kind of case they use at the movie theater to keep the hot dogs warm. In addition to chicken, there are potatoes and chimichangas. The potatoes are not called killer potatoes (or killer tomatoes), but to the untrained eye they are indistinguishable from the chicken. The woman behind the counter could tell between the two, but she had no idea why it was called the Killer Chicken.
A couple of customers told us quite adamantly, that it was called that,
“Because it’s killer!” (using the word as an adjective).
The owner, Kenny, couldn’t tell us much either. He bought the place 5 years ago and just kept serving it. Whatever he's doing seems to be working. At 11:30 AM the place was packed.
So many people were buying chicken and beer that the line extended to the back of the store.
Ed wanted chicken. So we bought a two-piece meal (white meat) for $2.99. The meal included 3 potatoes. All 5 almost identical looking pieces were put inside a white box with the words “Quality, Value, & Taste” written on it. By the time we got back to the Edhat office, the grease had permeated the box. Luckily, we had a copy of the News Press to put under it to protect our nice conference table. The food itself got a “not too bad” review from the dedicated staff – a little too salty and greasy were the main criticisms.
And nobody died, either.
As we said, there were many winners. 15 to be exact. They were Justine, TallieSue, JelloBomb, SisGoldenHair, Water, SamFreeman77, GoodStix, MarionWittkid, DC, Panda, sbKah, Marty, PoopiePants, Rabbiez, and RadChick.
FYI, some of the interesting, but incorrect guesses were, Breakwater, zoo, army base on upper state, side of a pest controller's van, coyote fire picture in SBNP 1964, UCSB soccer field, taco stand, Gibralter (caution to cyclists), killer bees, and Church of Skatan.
The Edhat dog was called in to break the tie and award the prize. We took the remaining piece of killer chicken and scattered them outside – each piece with one winner’s name assigned to it. On command, the food-motivated dog ran toward the chicken. It was all eaten so fast, but it easy to see that Panda’s chicken bit was eaten first. Now, is that a killer panda?
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