Wednesday, June 9, 2010
Chuck-A-Rama: A Tribute.
FYI: Chuck-A-Rama is an all you can eat buffet in Utah.
I have not been to Chuck-A-Rama, commonly referred to as "Up" Chuck-A-Rama, or "Puke Your Guts Out" A-Rama, for at least three years and my bowels thank me. Chuck-A-Rama is a Utah tradition, an establishment so to speak. When the pioneers crossed the plains, their dream included a place where they could settle peacefully and practice their religion. Their secondary dream was to establish a place in which they could gather and gorge themselves with mediocre (at best) chicken wings and giant, soggy french fries. Thank goodness, Brother Chuck A. Rama made it through across the treacherous plains with his oxen. He may have lost a toe or two in the bitter cold, but his legacy has endured.
During my visits to the Chuck Wagon, I have come to realize that there are four different types of people that eat there: Rednecks, Polynesians, Redneck Polynesians and people that have been dragged there by Rednecks, Polynesians or Redneck Polynesians. Most of my visits of the Crusty Crabcakes have come because my extended family members are in a white trash sort of mood.
I've never been to Samoa or Tonga, but I imagine there must be a Chuck Town on every corner there. I bet they just build them into the back of their Mormon churches and that is why they like to go there so much on Sundays.
The thing about the Chuck Fest that I find very irritating is that the owners have a strong belief that food is best served under ultra hot heat lamps. In fact, it seems that they believe that the longer the food is under the heat lamps, the tastier it must get. I am of the personal belief that the only good thing that ever comes from heat lamps are baby chicks. And even then, when the adorable chicks hatch from their sharpened shell, they are flabbergasted to find that their mother is actually really hot - and even though their mother is smoking hot, the babes soon learn that she is no chick.
The heat lamps at The Chuck are turned up so high, I am fairly sure that if science allowed it, you would find a hole in the ozone above the building the exact size of every one. I hate wandering around, trying to find the least shriveled up food item to plop on my plate. The worst are the rubber band hamburger patties. Who are these people that spend all that money to eat at Chuck-E-Vomits and they waste their tummy space on a dried, crusted hamburger patty that has been sitting under the egg hatchery for over an hour?
Rama-Of-Chuck is one of the few places that I will actually load up on the salad. Of course, their salad is fresh from the garden. I know this because there are ice chips surrounding the lettuce. Anything that has ice chips around something HAS to be just picked at the farm hours ago. If not, why even bother surrounding it with ice? That would be such a waste of ice! Think of all the African orphans you could feed with that ice! I also know the salad is fresh because when the salad guy dumps new salad in the bowl, the bag it is in is clearly has only been used once.
When I am going through a salad bar at any place, I am always surprised to see the chocolate pudding and gummy bears at the end of the line. I find myself thinking, "Ah, perfect, some Ranch Dressing (not fat free of course - why would I want to ruin a perfectly good salad?), some croutons, bacon bits, and what's this? Chocolate pudding? Gummy Bears? Who exactly is eating at this joint? Oprah? Kristie Alley? Susan Boyle?"
I don't know what is more disgusting, the thought of gummy bears on a salad or topping it with those red, slimy, syrupy beets that clearly came straight from the can. I do, however, always grab one of the miniature corn on the cobs so I can reenact that scene from Big. One of these days, I will need to wear a white tux when I go there.
Kids love Vomitville. Where else can they mix 30 different kinds of soda, hot chocolate and icees?
"What is that black drink you're drinking, junior?"
"Oh, it's my own special concoction. I call it "SpriDewsi Beer... It's delicious!"
I think that over the years I have had at least two, maybe three siblings vomit in the restroom of a Chuckville, Utah resort. On several occasions, I have been there with friends that have also had to visit the porcelain goddess of chunks. Food that utterly distasteful and dried up should never be consumed in such mass quantities. In fact, so often have people thrown up at the Chuckwagon, I believe they should install a specially designed vomiting bidet in every restroom. This bidet would be specifically designed so that you may throw up into it, relax for a second and then have it squirt your mouth out with fresh water. Actually, now that I think of it, it wouldn't need to be specially designed at all! A regular bidet would work just fine!
There is one item that does stand out amongst all items at the Chumbawomba. One item so intensely pure, so immensely delicious, that it almost, almost, ALMOST makes your trip there worth it. I am sure that you, my buffet loving readers, know exactly of which I speak. I am talking, of course, about the much beloved, much ballyhooed, fantastically delicious SCONE!!!
The Chuckle Huckle has the best scones in the world. Not only are the scones delectable, but they allow you to top it off with a couple scoops of toothsome, dripping, honey butter. I was once invited to a bachelor party at the Stonechuck. (I have some very strange friends) I promised myself that in order to keep myself from getting sick, I would only eat scones the entire night. And that's exactly what I did. I must have eaten fifteen scones that dreadful night. I ate so many scones, I went and sat down in the corner, rolled around like a dying seacow that had been washed ashore and moaned loudly "Too many scones! TOO MANY SCONES!" (I also might have done this to get a few laughs, but that is beside the point) I had the eyes of every Polynesian man, woman and child in the place on me.
I have not visited the Chuck-A-Rama for many years now. It seems that my relatives have de-white-trashed themselves, all of my friends are now married and my Polynesian mafia contacts refuse to take me out. Nevertheless, I am sure that I will one day again set foot in the quintessential, gruesome gorgefest, Zion buffet. And when I do, Brother Chuck A. Rama will look down from the great buffet in the sky and cry. The tear will fall through the gaping hole in the ozone and spread a golden layer of love on the rooftop. It will be a beautiful moment.