With I LIKE IT ANYWAY, James Austin Johnson interviews a fellow comedian to discuss an activity or artifact that they love—so long as it’s uncool, unbecoming, or otherwise unacceptable.
Of course the upper management at Chick-fil-A is the worst. No one is going to disagree with me on that. Seriously, this is the Higgs Weldon; what Republicans are reading this? (Answer: our moms.) These are men that are so rich they leave their 1,700+ stores locked up on Sunday. Why? Some vague semi-religious remembrance of 1950s Atlanta, probably. But more importantly, they don’t need the millions. That is insane. More recently the company has mired itself in controversy for a predilection toward raging homophobia. I always thought corporations couldn’t have weird public opinions, unless they happened to be delicious (e.g. “Pancakes should be sandwiches!”)
Whatever. I know Chick-fil-A sucks. But I like it anyway.
What I’m hoping to do with this column is highlight the things we treasure that society looks upon and goes, “Nah.” This can be a cultural artifact, like a Dave Barry book or Ranch Pringles. It can also be an activity, like jai alai or something. Whatever chugs one’s tugboat, so long as it’s uncool, unbecoming or otherwise unacceptable. Our first entry happens to be with one of my favorite people in America. I will be interviewing myself.
Chick-fil-A sucks, but to quote a film I bet Truett Cathy didn’t like much, “I wish I knew how to quit you, [Chick-fil-A].” The chicken is incredible. No one does it like those Atlantean homophobes. I’ve read a number of articles about the evils they’ve used their money to support, and it made me feel really good to be that socially conscious. It’s awesome being a liberal–I just want to eat the other side’s chicken. I want to eat that shit every day. I want to eat it with the zeal of a missionary stepping off of one of those planes that only lands in rivers. Speaking of self-congratulation, have you looked around in a Chick-fil-A recently? Everyone in there is so amped. I will never be that amped, not ever. Chicken that makes you forget how much your job sucks is special chicken.
Why do you like it?
These are dumb questions. I hope not all of the articles are like this. If they are, no one’s going to love you. Things are going to stay like they are now, with no one loving you. Only it will never change. You will be known as that guy who sucks at interviewing and that no one loves.
I’m waiting on your answer.
I like it because it’s good, man. I wish I could give a cooler answer. The breading is perfect. People go apenuts about tempura carrots or whatever at sushi places, but sticking to simple breaded chicken the way they do it is a mitzvah. I also hear they fry everything in peanut oil, which I suppose makes a difference. I don’t know; I’ve never asked anyone what kind of oil they use in their frying procedures. Probably because I’m not a prying loser.
Aside from trying to care about how they get the food to be so good, it also just works. It’s one of the only places in LA where you can order sweet tea (a traditional southern beverage that takes calorie-less leaf water and adds diabetes). The one I frequented back home in Nashville had an old woman who puttered around the dining room begging to “refresh your beverage.” She had a sad old woman face that revved my engine. I always let her refresh my beverage. That level of customer service and old people guilt is unequaled in the fast food game.
When did you first get into it?
There was a food court in the mall where my mom got her nails done. We’d usually eat there. Then she would let small women gently pat her fingers with chemicals while I wandered into Electronics Boutique with the hopes of one day owning a copy of MYST.
I love that game. You were right earlier–I am a loser.
I know! I’ve been telling you that every night for years. I wish you could just get some rest, but I keep bringing up all the times you were a loser and you keep doing that no-tears crying thing.
The one where I kind of lay there and heave?
Yahtzee. What is your deal??
I like Chick-fil-A and MYST, and I can’t say that I like being alone, but I will admit that I’m accustomed to it.
Your ex-girlfriend’s instagram makes it look like she’s had a way better post-breakup year. Have you seen it in a while? Pencil that in for my 3:00 a.m.
Side bar: do you think other people will like this column even though this first one is all over the place?
The good news is that you started strong, and most people stop reading these things after the first couple of paragraphs. And you won’t do the self-interviewing gimmick past this first one, right?
So there. You’ve got something to build on. If the other ones aren’t this navel-gazey and digressive you’ll be golden. Dude, it feels like you’re drawing to a close and I didn’t even talk about the sauces yet.
Right. That can be the last question for this first one. What do you get at Chick-fil-A? Is it pretty consistent visit to visit?
Totally. Spicy Chicken Sandwich combo. Provolone cheese. They added cheese to the menu a year or two ago and it changed my world and no one cares. Extra pickles. I get a Polynesian sauce, which is similar to sweet and sour sauce but is also probably an industrial lubricant; Chick-fil-A sauce, which is a husky yellow glaze akin to barbecue mixed with honey mustard; and Buffalo, which is made from the spicy tears of Americans living near Niagara falls. The drink is always sweet tea. And the fries speak for themselves. I place that order whenever I go and I don’t look back.
Thanks for doing this first one.
No prob. I love you.
I love you, too.
The Higgs Weldon is a humor website with funny stories, articles, cartoons, and one liners. It was started by the Los Angeles stand-up comedy community, but takes submissions from everybody. Please read and enjoy our jokes!