Finger Lickin' Good
was October of 2013 when the US Federal Government had 'Shut Down'.
With all government employees on sabbatical, Spud thought he'd head
over to Kentucky to see if he could make a withdrawal from the country's
largest ATM; the usually impenetrable, Fort Knox. Fort Knox is home
to the United States Bullion Depository which is used to store a large
portion of United States official gold reserves and occasionally other
precious items belonging or entrusted to the federal government. The
United States Bullion Depository holds 4,578 metric tons (5,046.3 short
tons) of gold bullion (147.2 million oz. troy); roughly 3 percent of
all the gold ever refined throughout human history. While Spud was expecting
tumbleweeds to be blowing through the empty building, the tuber apparently
didn't read the fine print and found that although most employees were
off work, Fort Knox was considered important enough to keep a worker
or two on hand.
little bummed out, Spud remembered that he had no visirted Kentucky
before, so that meant it was time to take in the sights! First
stop was Louisville and what better place to go then the home of the
'Louisville Slugger': The Hillerich
& Bradsby bat factory.
H & B have been
making ball swatters since the mid 1800s and anyone who is anyone in
baseball has used their equipment. Spud was in awe of the company's
pride and joy: an enormous slugger that stands outside the factory rising
120 feet into the air. The bat weighs in a bit over regulation size
at 68000 lbs. upon further investigation, The tuber learned that the
bat has been 'tweaked' and is in fact carbon steel made to look like
wood. It's also hollow, so like many of the bats out there in professional
use, the bat is juiced up and illegal, but will no doubt be used at
some point when the MLB needs a ratings boost and they decide to arm
a player in search of the home run record.
Louisville not only
knows how to pummel poor baseballs into oblivion, its hometown son knows
a thing or two about pummeling other people; pugilists that is. Louisville
is home to 'The Greatest': Muhammad Ali. The polarizing boxing figure
that floated like a butterfly and stung like a bee, was born in Louisville
and has the Ali
Center; a museum and cultural centre located downtown.
Spud has always
had great respect for men that would wear housecoats in public along
with shorts with the waistbands pulled almost up to their rib cage.
Usually that's only seen in seniors' centers. The difference of course
is that these men elect to beat the tar out of each other for up to
45 minutes taking a few short breaks to have their bloodied faces wiped
off with a sham-wow. Spud took a quick snap by Ali's Center then it
was off to his next stop: Churchill downs. The home of the Kentucky
each year since 1875, the Kentucky Derby is widely known as 'The Most
Exciting Two Minutes in Sports', although many many with PE will
debate that claim.
Downs has been the site of the 10 furlong race since its inception
and sits 120,000 spectators with countless more clogging the infield
while wearing outlandish hats and drinking mint juleps. Spud wandered
thru the gift shop and the hundreds of items on offer. Amidst the derby
shirts, headwear and DVDs, the tuber was perplexed that the shop was
also selling small bottles of glue. Outside a statue stands of Barbaro.
Barbaro was a thoroughbred racehorse who decisively won the 2006 Kentucky
Derby, but shattered his leg two weeks later in the Preakness Stakes,
ending his racing career and eventually leading to his death due to
laminitis. The inscription on the base stated that this was the horse's
final resting place. It was then that Spud realized why there was glue
in the gift shop.
Of course Kentucky's
greatest namesake wasn't the Derby. That sole honour belongs to the
Pagoda of Grease, the Friar of Fried Food, The Pantheon of Poultry:
none other than Kentucky Fried Chicken
Kentucky Fried Chicken
(or KFC for those who wish the appearance of being health conscious),
was born in Corbin Kentucky back in the early 1930s when Harland Sanders
began serving chicken fried in a pressure cooker, to travelers in his
home adjacent to a filling station. Spud learned that Sanders had perfected
a way of cooking chicken remarkably fast compared to traditional pan
frying and kept it juicy by ensuring the poultry was saturated in grease.
A method passed down to franchises still to this day. Sure, you have
to wring the chicken out like a wet towel before eating it, but it cooked
in half the time!
Harland has long
since passed on to a big grease trap in the sky, however Spud managed
to get a shot next to his likeness at the Visitor's Centre. Ironically,
Spud noted that the wax statue appeared to have the same consistency
as KFC fries.