chicken slang

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Wed Nov 2 21:48:29 UTC 2005

At 2:48 PM -0600 11/2/05, Cohen, Gerald Leonard wrote:
>If you go to Google and type in "drug slang, chicken", several
>pertinent items turn up. So the original suspicion that "chicken" in
>the song lyrics pertains to drugs seems plausible after all.
>Gerald Cohen

Not to me.  Methamphetamine flying everywhere around the plane?  I
don't think so.  Look at the lyrics, listen to the song, consider the
era (and the Arlo Guthrie persona), and then see if you think there's
such a meaning could have been intended in this context.

The third stanza Lois reproduced was

Hip woman walking on a moving floor
Tripping on the escalator
There's a man in the line
And she's blowing his mind
Thinking that he's already made her

Would anyone argue that the (a priori possible) drug-slang
interpretation of the final line, amounting approximately to
"thinking that he's already realized that she was a nark"', is
relevant here (as opposed to the highly plausible sexual fantasy
sense)?  Why is it so unlikely that a presumably stoned passenger
might trip out on the sight of pieces of real, actual chicken flying
off airplane trays?  (Not that I'm speaking from personal experience,
you understand.)


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