Talking head cheese with Husband-Head
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
“Somewhere … my love … there will be songs to sing …” I belted out to Lara’s theme as we watched television in bed.
Husband-Head and I were watching the movie “Dr. Zhivago” – one of my favorite chick flick films that I know bores Husband-Head to tears.
“Somewhere a hill … blossoms in green and gold,” I continued, singing along to the famous tune. “And there are dreams … all that your heart can hold …”
“YES!” Husband-Head yelled out in agreement. “I like the green and gold stuff. Those are the Packers colors! I LIKE that song! Dr. Zhivago was obviously a Green Bay fan!”
Husband-Head and I were lying in bed, supposedly trying to go to sleep, although that didn’t seem to be happening.
Because both of us were wide awake and doing the pillow talk thing.
But this wasn’t the sexy kind of pillow talk you would think. This was more of the “I-haven’t-seen-you-all-day-and-I-have-no-idea-what-the-hell-you’re-thinking-or-doing,” kind of pillow talk. “What did you say your name was again?” I asked Husband-Head.
So Husband-Head decides to “86” the Zhivago movie and we’re lying in bed with nothing else to do. And nope, THAT isn’t happening. … We were simply talking to each other.
I’m not sure how, but for some reason we got on the subject of school lunches, with Husband-Head having attended school in Wisconsin while I was in northern California.
“Did you ever have mock chicken legs?” Husband-Head wanted to know. “They came on a stick and I still don’t know what they really were, but I know they definitely weren’t chicken.”
A little recipe research on my part revealed that “mock chicken legs” are actually made out of ground veal and pork.
“We had cheese zombies at my high school,” I offered. “They were big rolls stuffed with cheese inside. And I think you got a coupon for a free fake tan with every purchase. …”
Husband-Head was not impressed.
“You wanna talk about bad food?” he challenged. “You’ve never lived until you’ve had a Braunschweiger sandwich washed down with a Blatz Light Cream Ale. You don’t even want to know the after effects of that. …”
No, you’re right. I don’t.
This whole conversation, of course, got Husband-Head all jacked up.
“Have you ever had head cheese?” he wanted to know and then started to laugh.
“Yeah, right,” I laughed back, convinced that he was joking. “There’s no such thing.”
“Oh yes there is!” he continued to laugh. “Head cheese is alive and well in Wisconsin! I never liked it and neither did my brother. He said it was just a lips and butts sandwich.”
I had no idea what the hell “head cheese” was so I got up and ran to the computer to find out. This was not a good thing to do before going to sleep, because further investigation revealed that “head cheese” was just as disgusting as the name suggested.
“The meat is apparently acquired from the head of a freshly slaughtered pig or calf. The head is then split or quartered and the eyes and ears are usually removed,” a description read.
“Remember when we were at a pig roast and there was a huge hog on a spit?” I reminded Husband-Head. “And remember when your dad walked over and lopped off the ear from the pig and began munching on it? I thought I was going to throw up.”
Husband-Head laughed, but sounded like he was going to gag at the memory as well.
“Yeah, he said it was the best part of the pig,” he recalled.
We were silent in bed for a few moments as we reveled in disgusting food and animal memories. …
“I once had a friend named Rodger in high school who I shared a locker with who fancied himself as a home taxidermist,” Husband-Head admitted.
I put my forefingers in my ears and started singing “La-la-la-la-la!”
“He used to stuff squirrels and put them on a stick,” Husband-Head continued. “We called him ‘Hodge-Podge-Rodge.’ I kicked him out of my locker.”
I turned over and went to sleep with no idea how we got from “Dr. Zhivago” to head cheese and Hodge-Podge-Rodge in one conversation.
Heidi Rice is a columnist for the Post Independent and Citizen Telegram. Her column appears every Thursday in the CT and Friday in the PI. To see more columns or buy her book collection, visit http://www.heidirice. com.
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