Sunday, January 31, 2010

Slaying Haggis Again

In 2010 the tradition has continued. The calendar was packed, four venues and fourteen haggis slain and two Immortal Memories of Robert Burns and all in eight days.

It started on Friday 15th, when the president of Rotary International, John Kenny, was being the key note speaker for the Rotarians at the Bonaventure Hotel in Downtown Los Angeles. Retired Chef Ivan from the Tam O’ Shanter Inn and I were there to “see to” the Haggis. A retinue of attendees were gathered up to follow the piper round the room as we paraded Scotland’s famous sausage. Amongst this throng was a Sikh, who previously admitted when challenged, that he was not a good Sikh and that he would drink his dram whisky. The general incongruity added to the fun of the moment when he sampled the first breath from the disemboweled sausage, “Warm, reekin’, rich!”

On the 20th and 21st at the Tam O’ Shanter, Lawry’s landmark restaurant, Burns’ Night was held in spite of the rain, and at two seating on each night we slew twelve of the haggi. It was there that my new friend Bernadette Hayes recorded the footage that forms the basis of the YouTube video. Burns’ “Address To A Haggis” is followed by “Horace” the Terry Jones’ Pythonesque irreverent explanation of the contents of a haggis.

Friday 23rd found my bonnie bride and I dining at the Athenaeum Club, the exquisite faculty club for California’s premier science academy, Cal Tech. The setting and the fare were wonderful. Chef Kevin’s haggis was opened to a gasping crowd. Nancy gave the toast to the Queen, and I proposed a toast to the Immortal Memory and preceded it with a discussion and recitation of “Death an Dr Hornbook”

The footage below was captured at the Tam O’ Shanter by “Lady Liberty” the twitter alias for Bernadette Hayes. We had fun and now so can you.