When I was a ten-year-old at summer camp, we had two favorite horror stories. One was a highly specific tale of an escaped asylum inmate who crept into a woman’s home, ritually killed and dismembered her dog, then took the dog’s place under her bed all night, periodically licking her hand. The other was the Kentucky Fried Rat.
The Myth of the KFR—and later the KFMSC (Kentucky Fried Mutant Spider Chicken)—has been debunked. Repeatedly. To the point where the current Snopes article is a masterpiece of literary analysis (“Women are most often the victim in this legend probably because they are considered more vulnerable than men, but perhaps also because this tale reinforces the notion that women have abdicated their traditional role as the family’s meal preparers…”). If that wasn’t enough, KFC regularly addresses it on their blog (called, charmingly enough, Chicken Chattin’).
And yet… I hadn’t been inside a KFC in 25 years, at least in part due to that particular legend. Until today, when the very real voice of my editor overwhelmed the high-frequency, panicked whining sound emitted by my inner ten-year-old whenever I’m within a hundred feet (of a KFC, not my editor).
“Yo,” he said. “Will you eat KFC Chicken and Waffles for me? They’re ONLY in your region.”
Which, I mean, is basically our generation’s version of this:
So, like that brave next-to-next-to-Last Jedi, I went.
The KFC Chicken and Waffles — which is being tested right now in Asheville and Charlotte, North Carolina, and Greenville South Carolina — comes in two sizes: two-piece with one waffle and three-piece with two waffles.
“I’ll have the two-piece chicken and waffles,” I began, with confidence.
“Did you want that with two-piece extra-crispy or tenders?” replied the cashier.
To her credit, when I hesitated then asked, “What do you recommend?” she didn’t roll her eyes.
“Two-piece,” she said serenely.
I got it to go (I had to let my dog out; I’m not a monster.) and it came in a neat little plastic container that was still hot when I arrived home. Mrs. Butterworth had her own compartment.