This weekend, I violated a chicken. His name was Herman.

Two weeks ago, C. and M. (married, drug-abusing, criminal moths to the courthouse flame friends of mine) came over unannounced and asked me and D. for money. They had only just started new jobs that paid well but hadn't paid yet, and C. & M. had been going without cell phones and internet, and they were also in danger of not being able to pay their rent. Just before we gave them the money, D. told me, "If we don't see this money back, that's strike three."

Strike one was the dinner party in September. Strike two was running into them at the End Zone during a Colts game, and halfway through their first beer, it was obvious that they had taken something beforehand to get fucked up, as C. dropped her lighter and bounced into everything imaginable like a pinball before finally landing to pick it up. After they left the bar that night, M. successfully achieved a hit-and-run while intoxicated and spent the next five months on house arrest. Strike three actually should have already occurred due to M.'s behavior on house arrest -- he would call us all day, every day, while fucked up and somehow forgetting again that we work from 8-5, to ask us to stop by the liquor store for him. We never did. Or, "hey, you guys wanna come over and bring a shit-ton of booze and get fucked up?"

But strike three came and went when I talked to C., who at the time was in the process of texting a guy she had a crush on (and eventually fucked), and told her that I thought M. was a bad influence on her.  "Before you met him, you were so serious about being sober and moving on," I said.  "Yeah, I know," she said absent-mindedly before diddling with her cell phone and saying that she had to go because she wanted to visit the guy she liked because she wanted to fuck him and get home at 10, which is the time she told her husband she'd be home from my house.  I gave her the benefit of the doubt, like I have been doing since I was eight years old.

However, strike three presented itself again two weeks ago, after they asked us for money.  We gave them the money, I told C. that D. won't want to hang out with them again (not that we ever actually hang out... I haven't had them over since the dinner party, though every time they "drop by" so we can do them favors, I always notice a bottle of Miller Lite sticking out of his pocket) if the money isn't paid back.  C. said, "Oh yeah.  I'll be making sure that M. pays you back." 

I woke up the next morning to a voicemail from M.:  "Hey, we just got in a car wreck, and they're giving her a blood test and might send her to jail... please call me back."

His Facebook status at 12:15 that morning said, "Wife in jail with OWI need 500 to bail her out, please help."

I was still seeing red when he called later that morning.  "Hey, do you guys think you could lend us a little more money?"  I ripped him a new asshole, asking why she was driving if she was fucked up, telling him we were all tapped out of money at the moment (which I know he didn't believe, because he has a habit of making extremely weird and rude remarks about how we must make so much money because of the big house/the cars/the televisions/the computers/the phones, when really we don't make that much money -- we just don't spend all of it on court fines and drugs... and the nice televisions were both gifts), yelling at him to get his shit together, etc.  It went in one ear and out the other, he mumbled an "okay," and we hung up.

The next day, C. called me.

C.:  Hey.  I'm outta jail.
Me, apathetic:  Cool.
C.:  But I have to say, I'm pretty upset that you seem to think that M. and I used that money you lent us to go get fucked up.
Me:  I actually didn't say that.  I certainly reamed him, but I didn't say that.
C.:  Okay, well, he seems to think you did.  I didn't get fucked up last night.  I got an OWI because my medication doesn't mix right, and I dropped my glasses while I was driving (?!), and when I picked them up, I side-swiped a car.  But it was my medication, the cops couldn't do anything about it, and they released me.  They were just being dicks.
Me:  You know, you say that a lot.  "The cop was just a dick," "They're just trying to fulfill a quota," "They just didn't like me because they knew I'd been in trouble before."  If your medication fucks you up to the point where you shouldn't drive, then you're not safe at all from having to go back to jail over this. 
C.:  I am too!  It was prescribed by a DOCTOR.  It SAYS on the LABEL, "Use caution while driving."  It DOESN'T say to NOT drive.
Me:  Why do you think they even mention it at all?  Do you have any idea how wiped out the pharmaceutical industry would be from lawsuits if it didn't?  Because people take certain meds, they shouldn't drive.  You think that if a legitimate practition injects you with morphine that you would be okay to drive without consequence and not get arrested for intoxication?
C., avoiding issue:  Well, whatever, I don't understand why you're basically telling me "fuck you."
Me:  I'd never say that.  I've been supporting you for years.  Visiting you in prison, writing to you in prison, going to your court dates, giving you money, letting you stay in my house, giving you rides... I wouldn't do that if I didn't think you could get your shit together.
C.:  This is just who I am.  It isn't M. being a bad influence.  Not all of us can be as perfect as you are.
Me:  Perfect?
C:  What's so bad about me just wanting to live my life and have a good time?
Me:  Nothing, if your definition of living your life has you do things that put you in jail all the time... if you want your "good time" to be in jail, then go ahead.
C.:  And as if you never drink.
Me:  If I'm going to drink to the point where I get fucked up, I stay at home.  You seem to have some kind of magnet that reacts to cars, but only when you're drunk.  Sure, I do some of the same things you do, but I don't drive and get a hit-and-run.  Or side-swipe a car.  Or show up at a bar with a truckload of Xanax in my system already.  Or get arrested at least three times a year.  But somehow, you have so many excuses -- it's just bad luck, the cops are just stupid, it's just my meds.  So we're not talking about me, we're talking about you.
C.:  Right, well, obviously we're not going to agree on this, you obviously don't accept me... we'll pay you back the money, but after that, we're done being friends.  So why don't you just keep being a loser, living with your cousin, and you guys can go make some retarded babies--
Me:  Okay.  Fuck you.  [click]

When I told D. the last thing she said, he laughed and replied, "Well, we could certainly make a retarded baby, but at least it won't get taken away by CPS like hers was."  At the time, I thought that was too mean, as I was sure she'd call back the next day, but she hasn't called in over a week, and I've had time to get used to her finally trying to not need me anymore.  So now I think what D. said was hilarious.

What I also thought was funny was that she made the comment about retarded babies when D. and I were supposed to join them for a March of Dimes walk this past weekend to raise money for natal care.  You stay classy, sweetheart.  Since D. and I (and my parents, and my brother) were the only ones to even donate money to the team, we were able to justify not going.  I mean, a doctor performing surgery on a sick baby isn't going to think, "Good thing those people walked at the county fairgrounds with their free t-shirts.  It's the physical movements they made that day that make this surgery possible."

Since we didn't go to the March of Dimes, we did some yardwork (and our front lawn looks KICK. ASS. right now), and we invited over a couple of D.'s friends from work, to whom I've also been getting pretty close as well.  I made my first ever whole, stuffed, roasted chicken:

1 3 lb chicken, rinsed with water and patted dry with a paper towel
I put a can of chicken broth in a roasting pan and threw in some chopped carrots, sliced celery, and a few quartered potatoes.  After rinsing and drying the bird, I stuffed it with about 1/4 cup rosemary, maybe 1/8 cup each thyme and sage, half a quartered onion, lemon quarters (but not before squeezing the lemon onto the chicken), and two cloves minced garlic.  With the stuffing inside, I tressed the chicken with a length of butcher twine.  I added it to the roasting pan, among the chicken broth and vegetables, rubbed a bit of olive oil on the bird and dashed on some salt, pepper, and oregano.  I put it on the lower shelf in the oven at 350° and checked on it every half hour or so to either stir the veggies or baste the chicken.  At two and a half hours, it was ready to eat.

And it was pretty damn good, if I do say so myself.  I'm going to make chicken enchiladas tonight with the leftovers.  It was a bit strange, however, putting my hand inside the chicken cavity.  D. named the chicken Herman, and I said I'd rather not name something I'm about to stuff, roast, and serve to people.  But... the body of a chicken is so...unappetizing, when you have a whole one.  Its arms, its legs, its general shape.  I had to watch closely to make sure D. didn't take it and make it start dancing on the counter.

I don't need C. around to have a good time, but I do need food.  I need to make food, I need to feed people.  Finding a new, promising recipe is like going on a great first date... you want to try it out to see if it works, but you're nervous that something will go wrong.  Does that make allrecipes.com an enabler?

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