Summer had come and with it the new summer menu at Chow Chow Kitchen (14201 Madison Ave, Lakewood). With the introduction of new dishes like the MC Pig Boi, a dope pork mac n’ cheese with a sweet BBQ, and snacks such as the Wet Fries and Smoked Salmon Deviled Eggs, the menu had something for everyone, but being a Clevelander—our affinity for handheld foods is a strong one—I went with one of the po’ boys. I could hear the growls of my stomach, ominous in tone, chanting “Dude, get the Bangers & Dukes.” The sweet BBQ with andouille sausage and pepper chow topped with pickles called to me.
I made it home and was going to get my grub on, but when I approached the door, I was blindsided. My assailants were masked and before I could react, they knocked me out. When I came to, my eyes were pried open and I was restrained to a chair with my food on a tray in front of me. What I was to face next would be the biggest test of my resolve. They rolled up a TV/VCR combo, which I was confused by because that stuff’s pretty antiquated, but it was effectively ominous nonetheless. “I hope that sandwich is pretty good because we aren’t going to let you out until you finish it,” said one of the masked assailants, whose thick accent was clearly fake and who was probably just some dude from Parma.
He played the tape, and the screen lit up; it was Guy Fieri eating sandwiches in a continuous loop. His mayonnaise-like body secreting oils like some strange toad demon, all the while wrapping his Spitfire Jeans logo-shaped head around a pastrami sandwich lathered in slaw and Thousand Island dressing. Finishing this sandwich would prove to be a difficult task, but also my only chance at freedom. As horrid of a sight as the loop of Guy Fieri eating was, I was still going to finish my po’ boy.
Mustering my strength and letting the persistence of my hunger take on the demon that is the Food Network’s clown, I tore through the Bangers & Dukes, which was savory with a perfect amount of spice. My captors watched on, and even they were pained by Fieri’s slurps, which sounded like someone attempting a Solo cup-sized Jello shot. I persevered, and eviscerated the Bangers & Dukes, a creation so delicious that even the existence of Guy Fieri had been forgotten.
My captors had taken noticed and asked, “On a scale of one to ten how was the sandwich?”
I gulped nervously like a latin Micheal Cera, “Uhhh, a ten.”
He looked surprised. After a brief discussion with his partner, they released me from my restraints while apologizing. “We are terribly sorry about that. See it’s our anniversary coming up and we wanted to give that place a try. Damn, that must’ve been a damn good sandwich. I think we went a little too far on this one.” They laughed, and needless to say I was confused, but relieved. I sighed and asked them for a ride home and they kindly obliged.
It was a pretty strange day, but I’d say it was worth it because I got to eat at Chow Chow, a place where you can find a meal so delicious that you can even eat it while watching Guy Fieri—in all his toad-like, meat-sweating form—eat on a continuous loop.