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28 March 2006 @ 08:53 pm
King Cluckenhamen  
What could be more disgusting than a mummified chicken that is ten years old?
(Doesn't that sound disgusting?)

Today Tracy Crystal, classmate of my youth, and I bravely unwrapped a chicken - technically a cornish game hen - that had been painsakingly wrapped and preserved ten years ago in our sixth grade class. I was only twelve at the time, and I can barely remember it - everything seems so far away now. Our class went all out for Ancient Egypt - we built a pyramid facade to frame the doorway to our classroom, drew large hieroglyphics and scenes from the Book of the dead to cover the walls, and mummifed our chicken with great enthusiasm!

The chicken had been treated with oils and salt and lovingly wrapped in many layers of terrycloth bandages. As we pulled the strips off they changed color from white to cream to dirty yellow as we got closer and closer to the bird inside. Salt that had caked around the bodyd fell in hard little pellets all over the counter, and crumbled at the touch. The carcass was finally revealed, dried and hard as a rock. For emphasis Mrs. Rodriguez pounded the chicken a few times against the counter; it made a solid thud! thud! thud! each time it struck. It had turned quite orangish on the outside, like fried chicken. But it had no stench at all - quite hard to believe that sixth graders could have so effectively preserved it!
As with a regular mummy, its innards had been taken out and preserved seperately in canopic jars that in a previous lifetime had contained baby food. Unfortunately, despite being buried in salt these did not last as well - when we opened them up they smelled of sweat socks.