Category Archives: Mystery Meat

9. Kiszka

Imagine scrapple and blood stuffed into an intestine. You’re feeling the love in this already, aren’t you? Well, check this out…

I am a Slavic mutt, and this is the food of my people. I understand that meat blends like this come from not wasting any part of the pig you slaughtered.  I get that, and I can understand how you have to become creative with what you have in order to survive.  But when you have other options (like Slim Jims), is there any reason to eat this?  Under knife-point maybe?

But then again, there is a certain level of bravery required to consume this that I do not have.  You have to be pretty tough to be able to look at the label, read this:

And put this in your mouth. I know my cowardice is rearing its head big time.

Maybe instead of saying, “Keep Refrigerated,” it should say, “Keep in Quarantine”.

Nevertheless, my bias is enhanced by the esoteric association I make with this sausage-ish concoction, a popular polka song by Frankie Yankovic and His Yanks called “Who Stole the Keeshka?” Have a listen. Go on. You have the morbid curiosity. I know it.

With my accordian-playing grandfather turning in his grave right now, I have to say that polka music is one of the more embarrassing aspects of Slavic-American culture. I mean, is there any question why Slavs (mainly the Poles) got the reputation at one point in U.S. history as being dense?  Two of their own (Walter Dana (music) and Walt Solek (lyrics)) wrote a song about the pain and agony behind the theft of meat mush in a gut with a tune and arrangement that make people lose their fillings.  This was not putting our best foot forward.  Really.  And I don’t care which one of you under the beer tent disagrees, provided you can still make a cohesive argument.

But maybe a little kiszka would help with the hangover.

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