Elska Chows Down at Chick-fil-A

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So we all have heard about how Chick-fil-A is anti-gay and that we shouldn’t eat there as a boycott… or maybe we should eat there out of defiance. I’m of the latter camp philosophically, but I wanted to actually go to one since I’m here in the States now, and give a review of the experience.

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I ended up at a Chick-fil-A in Lake Forest, California. It’s in Orange County, between LA and San Diego, sandwiched between mountains and ocean. It’s Southern California, so it should be liberal and gay-friendly, right?  Well this is Orange County, which I’m told is almost as bible-bashing as Texas, but somehow the palm trees make it hard for me to believe. Isn’t it true what they say about Americans being ok if they’ve seen the sea?

Anyway, I’ll start with the food…

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Now I’m no gastro-snob… I like a bit of junk now and again, but Chick-fil-A brands itself as being a bit fresher than the rest, lacking the preservatives and additives that you find in most fast food. I ordered the 4-count chicken strips, with a side of waffle fries, Polynesian sauce, barbecue sauce, and a DDP (Diet Dr Pepper).

The chicken pieces were moist breast fillets, seemingly not processed or reconstituted at all. The breading was simple and not overly done. Quite bland, but rather suited to my taste buds which haven’t developed much beyond a 12 year old’s palate. The chips were good too, chunky enough that you can actually taste that they’re made of potato, but crisp too. Both sauces were overly sweet, but the Polynesian was the sugariest, so one dip was more than enough.

Shall I give it a star rating? Nah, I can’t be bothered, and that’s not really what was interesting about the experience.

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As Willam sang in the brilliant “Chow Down at Chick-fil-A” (click to watch the video), “we just want a little meat without your bible”, I was actually shocked to find that I too couldn’t enjoy my lunch without a sermon on the side.

A few tables away, well within earshot, was a group of three kids, probably 11 or 12 years old. They were discussing gay marriage and each trying to put forward nays in the debate. They tried as if in some losing battle to convince themselves that God does indeed hate gays, so they could justify their prejudice in the midst of a fast-changing society. The little boy (precocious in that sort of way that a lot of fags were at that age) was spouting off homophobically applicable Bible quotes, along with their chapter and verse numbers with the accuracy of Eastenders’s Dot Cotton. Having to listen to this spoiled my meal, not just because of what I heard but because it was coming from children. It’s the next generations that are supposed to be the open-minded ones who open society for all of us. Not in the O.C. anyway, or at least not in the sanctuary-like confines of a Chick-fil-A dining room. If I ever come back here, it’ll be via the drive-thru window.

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