Next up in the A to Z Challenge!
Today we have:
J is for Jalapeno Dragon
This little Jalapeno Dragon was done by an artist calling himself Higgins Dragon, which I found on his now-defunct 2010 blog. I think this little dragon is cute, but I hope he stays far away from me! I’m a total wimp when it comes to anything spicy, so even looking at this picture makes me long for some ice water.
I almost always ask, “Is it spicy?” when ordering food, and then I have to qualify it with, “No, I mean, I think Taco Bell is spicy, so even if you don’t consider it ‘spicy,’ does it have any spice at all?” That’s a bit of an exaggeration, but I have to be careful. I also always read menus for fine print.
It’s even a game when I go out with friends, who love to point out crazy things that would probably kill me, like a burger “topped with ghost pepper cheese, jalapeno bacon, pineapple habanera sauce, caramelized onions, and jalapenos.” Yeesh!
(Speaking of habanera, Higgins Dragon also created a Habanero Dragon that’s pretty cute too…)
So anyway, last year when we went to a trendy new burger joint, I thought I’d try the turkey burger. There was no fine print on the menu, turkey was just one of the choices among beef, veggie, bison, lamb, etc., so I didn’t even think to ask my usual questions… I ordered it with lettuce, tomato, and mayo, and regular American cheese (no pepper-jack for me, thanks!), and when it arrived with everyone else’s food, I happily dug in.
And then I nearly died. It was so spicy! The menu hadn’t even called it “seasoned” turkey (another term I have to watch out for!), so after gulping my drink unhappily and blaming myself for not asking this one time if the food I was ordering was spicy, and then having my husband try the burger also to make sure I wasn’t crazy (he agreed, it was quite spicy even by normal standards), we called the waitress back over.
I had to stammer through an apology that, unfortunately, I was overly sensitive to spice, and I was sorry I hadn’t asked, but this was killing me, and was the turkey burger seasoned at all?
And unbelievably her deadpan reply was, “Oh yeah, we mix it with jalapenos.”
Wait, what?? We were all a bit shocked, and I asked to see the menu once again — and sure enough, there was no mention of that at all! (Who does that?!?) Luckily, the manager was nice about it and let me order something else instead (the very least seasoned thing on their menu), and we did go on to have a fun rest of the night, since I didn’t actually die.
But ever since then, whenever I see a turkey burger on any other menu, I always have to ask the weird question, “Hey, I know it doesn’t say on here, but you don’t mix your turkey burger with jalapenos, do you?” It leads to funny looks and usually a shorter recap of this story, because now I have trust issues. But I learned my lesson — always ask!
How about you — are you into spicy food, or does this post have you reaching for your water bottle? 🙂 Let me know in the comments!
And check back later (or more likely, tomorrow) for another snippet from my Neeka story as I participate in the latest WordPress Discover Challenge — no slacking for me today, I’ve already checked the prompt and I’m composing as we speak! Stay creative everyone!