I was driving home from school this morning and got behind a truck with the strangest slogan on the back: “Meats That Makes Men s.” Underneath a huge Z logo was the inscription: “Z-Bird.” The truck had Georgia plates.

Huh? I thought. I pulled up closer and realized that there was a letter obscured by the latch on the back of the truck, but still, it seemed strange for this vehicle to be driving down the street giving everyone Z-Bird. Shipping chickens to Arkansas is a bit like carrying coals to Newcastle and all that. There’s a chicken farm on every corner. I had to research this when I got home.

It seems that the parent company is Zartic. They have an interesting list of trademarked labels, judging from the fine print on their web site:

Bakeables, Bar-Z-Que, Chicken Fryz, Chic-N-Vittles, Circle Z, Crispy Steak, Entrée Legends, Heavenly Wings, Hi-Brand, Honey Hugged, Jim’s Country Mill Sausage, Meats That Make Menus, PiggleStix, Rockin’ Roasted, Wing Demons, Z-Best Bird You Can Serve, Z-Bird, Zartic, and Zartran are trademarks of Zartic, Inc.

I’m sure Chicken Fryz are big with the Hi-Brand crowd, and that most folks would like to be Honey Hugged after they are Rockin’ Roasted. I’ll go for the Heavenly wings, but keep those Wing Demons away from me, and please refrain from giving me Z-bird. I felt worse after pondering what might be included in PiggleStix, though I suppose puttting pigs on a stick has a long heritage.

It seems noteworthy that the company recalled 18,600 pounds of chicken in 2000 because it contained an “undeclared egg product.” Now there’s another point to ponder: just what is an undeclared egg product and why would it get mixed up with a chicken in the first place? But before I digress into the chicken and egg debate, I suppose I had better shut up.

Sometimes, I’m just too easily amused.