Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Happy fried baby day

'Tis the season in Southern Louisiana for Mardi Gras. A French-originated festival where once upon a time the King rode through the villages on horseback, tossing jewels, cash and unpasteurized cheese at the masses, it has evolved to the point at which regular folk toss about beads and also cook gumbo. Mardi Gras also offers the opportunity to consume king cake. King cake is a cinnamony concoction which, much like the foods of Hong Kong (where nothing is served unless it's endangered) features a tasty surprise in the middle, namely a plastic baby which is supposed to represent the king. Psychologists, far more qualified than myself, will need to explain the symbolism of a charred plastic infant in relation to royalty, although if the French/Louisiana monarchs were anything like the current British ones, I can certainly understand.

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