How Chicago’s Love of The Terror That Be Tavern Tamales Can Best Be Explained As Nothing More Than A Gianormous Case Of Cognitive Dissonance


When not blogging on AzChiMex comida and literally juggling dos los ninos withinin spare 60 second blasts I’m slightly consumed with thinking about the brain. Not ceso, gracias very mucho, rather the electric, dappled jello-mold bobbing blissfully – hopefully – between my ears. This stems from the right side (or is it left?) of my recently earned college degree from the mega-U, pre-baristacademic Arizona State University. Filmmaking and psychology were my majors. And because I am a “lifelong learner” who passionately loathes that term, I can’t help but continue to view “films” with a critical eye and perform psychological experiments on my children.

Before you get all Child Protective Servicesy allow me to be the first to inform you that I am joking. (Though El Nino Numero Uno may require a session on Sigmund’s sofa upon discovering here how I once substituted his diapers with tortillas, unless he kills me first, then he will be Oedipus.)

On a similar B-flat, if I could improve one thing about all this electronic communication it would be to replace JK and LOL, LMAO et al with a subtler means of alerting readers when sarcasm, innuendo and humor happens.

Then again, to paraphrase the Martian in Woody Allen’s “Stardust Memories”:

“You want to do blogging about AzChiMex comida a real service? Tell funnier jokes.”

En verdad, the only psychological experiments performed around here are on my own ceso when depressed by lusty AzChiMex food in limited supply.


Which is how I’ve come to self-diagnose myself and my fellow Chicagoans as suffering from a serious case of comida Mexicana cognitive dissonance.

Por que Cognitive Dissonance?

Cognitive dissonance1-1

Take it away Dr. Festinger:

Hypothesis A – “The existence of dissonance, being psychologically uncomfortable, will motivate the person to try to reduce the dissonance and achieve consonance”

Hypothesis B – “When dissonance is present, in addition to trying to reduce it, the person will actively avoid situations and information which would likely increase the dissonance

Mira: If “dissonance” = Mexicana comida Chicago mediocre then according to hypothesis ‘ A’ the reduction sauce to achieve consonance = “Killer”  ‘Pitbull’ et al Margaritas  and/or beer by the gallon.


I tend to lean towards hypothesis B myself and avoid all “situations and information” likely to motivate me to take leave of my family for a Oaxaca Special at Carolina’s in Phoenix, or Oaxaca Mexico for good due to comida dissonance though on a recent Saturday night I abandoned my family (and mind) for a work outing. Gallons of beer, several ill-advised en fuego shots, and pool all contributed to a bout with hypothesis A whence upon I inhaled a hot dozen tavern tamales whose brilliance moved me to sing over the karaokeers a cancione original de amor por tamales de oro de dio y authentica, sabrosa y delgado in my best Ronnie James Dio to the tune of Holy Diver. Hell, I even let los tamales take selfies, so ‘consonated’ fue yo.

photo 2


And por que even with restorative pills now availble there’s always a ‘the morning after’. 600full-the-morning-after-poster

This ‘the morning after’ would not be the first time I fished ‘the night before’ food from out of my pockets, and ( con apologias mi ninos ) will likely not be the last. Though this ‘the morning after’ was different:  the first one while (still) married, with two children I honor all husbandly and fatherly responsibilities. So damn skippy I cooked the found food prior to eating it.


Argue all you want about whether one can objectively judge the quality – y mas importante the authenticity – of any comida typica (obviously were not blogging about The Frontera Grill here – gracias dios) pulled from the lint-lined confines of one’s trouser and/or satin bomber jacket pockets. But, the most sublime uneaten half of Philadelphia Cheesesteak I’ve ever eaten ‘the morning after’ spent ‘the night before’ pressed up against my heart, nestled as it was within the satin sanctum of a beloved nut brown suede car coat.


Can we put aside for the moment the suggestion that I sleep in my clothes and/or am homeless?


Back to the matter at hand:

How Chicago’s Love of The Terror That Are Tavern Tamales (and when you think about it, pickled eggs) Can Best Be Explained As Nothing More Than A Gianormous Case Of Cognitive Dissonance.

 Cognitive dissonance1-1

Cognitive dissonantless confession time: I’ve never eaten a microwaved tampon. Nor will I ever, no matter how cossonated I become. For I can’t possibly imagine how one might taste even slightly better than a tavern tamale. Insert appropriate penance for my transgressions here.


Not sure what worked – and I ate all six masa mistakes – and because even Jaques Lacan couldn’t explain divine intervention and even if he did I wouldn’t even pretend to understand him, Los Dios dropped onto my grocers’ shelf that very same afternoon the following masa milagras:

 photo 4

I shall refrain from sharing the location of my nearest grocer and these tamales. Though nuking a couple dozen then hauling ’em in an igloo down to my corner cantina might not be the worst kind of intervention. Nah…they’ll keep just fine in my 501s.

Escuche la musica del Killer Pussy para Arizona circa 1980s:

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