the password is SPATCHCOCK

by santoki

During a late dinner at the Golden Apple, I learned a new word, “spatchcock.” Like most of us, I was appalled that this word would be used to describe a method of food preparation, let alone the preparation of my Greek Chicken dinner. After much snickering and questioning, Nora surmised that perhaps the meaning is derived from the act of flattening a chicken with a spatula. Good guess, sort of:

(n) 1. a fowl that has been dressed and split open for grilling.(v) (used with object) 2. to prepare and roast (a fowl) in this manner. 3. to insert or interpolate, esp. in a forced or incongruous manner: “Additional information has been spatchcocked into the occasional random footnote.” [Origin: 1775–85; appar. alter. of spitchcock; popular interpretation as shortening of dispatch cock is prob. specious] [1]

n. A fowl split open and grilled after being killed, plucked, and dressed in a summary fashion. Originated in Irish use, later chiefly Anglo-Indian. [2]

The word might be over 200 years old, and it still sounds ridiculous. Nora and I have decided to co-opt this word and use it as it should be: (n)1. idiot (v)2. acting in the manner of a spatchcock. For example:

Bryan Sanchez is a spatchcock.

When introducing my best friend to my boyfriend, I spatchcocked and forgot her name.

Much better, wouldn’t you say?

[1] “spatchcock.” Unabridged (v 1.0.1). Random House, Inc. 17 Dec. 2006.
[2] “spatchcock.” Oxford English Dictionary. 2nd edition 1989