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Half-Ton of Haggis

Half-Ton of Haggis

“The Scots of Illinois have been doing a brave and good thing. They have just completed their 119th Anniversary Dinner in the Conrad Hilton hotel, and are looking forward to the 120th next year. A total of 1,200 persons ran their teeth into this Scot victual at the last affair. It is estimated that these Scots have averaged 500 persons at the 119 banquets past. There was a half-ton of haggis imported from Scotland for their affair just past. As this figures just short of one pound haggis per person, the horrifying conclusion is forced upon you that, over the years, these Scots and their guests have gnawed away 59,500 pounds of haggis. This is based on an average of 500 guests per year.

This viewed by a non-Scot outlander, comes under the head of valor above and beyond the call of duty. Had not these fellows faced bravely up to the responsibility and gnawed their way bravely thru this mound of goo, Chicago would by this time be up to its ears in haggis. Stone Park, which is sometimes under water, could easily have been under haggis, and the natives would have had to bare their teeth and gnaw their way to freedom. But, thanks to the Scots, this victual has not been allowed to pile up. There are some non-Scots who share the feeling that this haggis is not so much a food as a misfeasance. These people contend the Scots approach the matter from the wrong angle. It is their contention these fellows would do much better to eat the bagpipe and play the haggis.

This haggis, if you wondered, is made up of the heart, liver, lungs of the sheep, plus oatmeal, mint suet, carrots, powered herbs and salt and pepper. The only complaint of this department is that, after it is cooked, it tastes a great deal like the heart, liver, lungs of the sheep, plus oatmeal, mint suet, carrots, powdered herbs and salt and pepper. This dish was to Scotland what the potato was to Ireland, and, while they do not acclaim it the greatest of delicacies, get from it the reminder of the struggling days. Be that as it may, the Scots are cheerful folk, and have raised a great deal of loot for the old folks home thru the Anniversary Dinner...” From an article in the Chicago Tribune, “A Line O’ Type or Two” December 10, 1964.

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