I was recently invited to a lobster cookout, by a vermont native who apparantly grew up on these things.
Let me just say that I am a picky eater... I am of british descent, and the british like their food relatively non-flashy. Preferably pastry or breadcrumb covered.
So anyway, I was invited by my sysadmin to head over to the peninsula and partake in fresh (read "live") lobster, shipped from Vermont. I didn't really give it much thought, as I thought "cookout" might involve non-lobster things. Since I also used to be a veg-head, I have become adept at filling up on side dishes. So I arrived to a few signs allegedly drawn by the lobsters, quaking in fear, which directions to where every body was. It was a wet, wet day, and there was a huge tarp up outside.
So, playing the role I thought I could handle, I inquired as to the whereabouts of the little critters. I was directed to a big blue plastic box full of gel packs and alien creatures. I nudged it with my toe, and the whole thing moved. All their claws had rubber bands around them. they eyes were twitching...
At this moment, It dawned on me that we had to kill them, then pull them apart and scoop out their bug-like interior. BUGS! these things are sea bugs, and I don't care what you think., They have about 12 legs, enormous claws, and this little segmented tail structure that they can flex. If they were any bigger, there would be no way in hell we would be attempting to eat them. They remind me a lot of the New Zealand Weta, as lobsters are close competitors for the title God of Ugly Things. Way fucking ugly.
Once riled up, the bugs would not cool down, and I made the fatal mistake of anthropomorphizing one into a lobster character in a little life and death drama of my own imagination. And then I got to see little Brutus dunked in boiling water..
So to make a long story short, the sound of 20 people cracking open shells and sucking intestinal stuff out of sea bugs is something I will never forget. There is just no way in hell I am ever going to go through that again. Back to potato and onion pies for me.