On the occasion of your one-thousandth day of Tweeting—every single day, from @WeWant_pluckers—that Shreveport needs a location of the Pluckers Wing Bar fried chicken chain, I just wanted to take a moment and celebrate you and maybe have a little talk.
You’re a ‘bot, I know. Just a string of code, designed to run forever until someone tells you to stop. But when I think back on our last one thousand days together, I can’t help smiling.
Remember when you said “Day 887: Please come to Shreveport @Pluckers”?
I met you sometime around Day 312, and I recall thinking “Surely this thing’s gonna eventually stop, like it’ll get hacked or someone will edit the message or something.” But you kept right on posting the exact same message, day after day, for literal years. When you passed the seven hundred mark, I raised an eyebrow. At eight hundred, I knew you’d go all the way. I always believed in you, despite what your detractors said. You passed nine hundred.
This Saturday, Nov. 20 will make one thousand days in a row that you have Tweeted the same plea, never bothering me with—for example—a link to sign up for a newsletter, useful information, or a photo of some delicious-looking fried chicken. Who needs those things, when you’re building a mystery? Without the burden of useful information, my imagination is free to dream up the perfect Pluckers Wing Bar, without being weighed down by the sandbags of reality. Smart!
I posted on Facebook that I was proud of you, and my buddy Mr. Coach Wilson concurred.
“You take a creamy log of mac and cheese, roll it in breadcrumbs and fry it with a side of ranch. Mannnnnn listen,” Mr. Coach said. “I salute you Pluckers Bot, you’re doing the work of kings.”
“The thing that always stood out the most to me was the Dr. Pepper wing sauce,” my friend Emily messaged. “They were my introduction to wings because I loved the boneless honey bbq flavor. That led me to trying other flavors there and at other restaurants.”
See, @WeWant_pluckers Twitter Bot? We see you.
But truth be told, I’ve been thinking a lot. About us. I think it is time for someone in your life, someone who actually cares about you enough to speak up, to have a difficult talk with you. I’m sorry, I know, there’s never a good time for a conversation like this.
This may be hard for you to hear, but I’m not one hundred percent certain that Shreveport actually does want Pluckers.
I know you’ve opened in several East Texas towns over the last few years, and that you’re feeling like the cock of the walk. You’ve probably stared down dozens of locations of Popeye’s, Zaxby’s, and even Cane’s and emerged victorious.
But do you know about Southern Classic? Have you ever eaten Tumanella’s chicken strips from the Blue Store on Cooper Road? Do you really want to stand in the long shadow cast by Wing Taxi? The feral ghouls of South Bossier have Chicken Express, which—no shit—once ran a promo where they gave a free two-piece fried chicken combo to anyone brandishing a gun. As far as I know, there’re still local legends like Cotton Boll Grill, Eddie’s Restaurant (where I ate my favorite Shreveport order of fried chicken ever, covered in piping-hot gravy), and several other fantastic, independent spots for chicken. Also, did you know? There are 41,000 c-stores selling Krispy Krunchy Chicken® in Caddo and Bossier parishes alone.
But Southern Classic is the one that’ll get you. If whoever coded you, Pluckers ‘Bot, isn’t lying awake at night staring at the ceiling and wondering how many Classic Combos with a pepper are sold every single hour in Shreveport, Louisiana, you’re not going to be prepared for reality here. Southern Classic will dance on your grave. “The king stays the king,” as they say. Even if I felt like there was better fried chicken in this town than Southern Classic, I would never say such a thing out loud.
And there’s another thing, @WeWant_pluckers Twitter ‘Bot, that you should know about us. Here in Shreveport, we have this habit—myself included—of boosterism that isn’t always backed up by, you know, actual patronage. So we’ll all say, for example, that we’re super-excited about the new location of Snake Bodega and then when opening day comes, no one buys a snake, and before you know it, the bankrupt franchisee is driving around South Highlands, dumping surplus snakes at intersections that look like they’re probably not school bus stops.
Last thing, and I hope that I don’t get emotional here. I told myself I would never be overly candid or emo on this blog, and so far I have managed to be completely stoic in every blog post ever, thank goodness.
You can give up, Pluckers to Shreveport Twitter ‘Bot. And if you don’t want to quit, you can take a few days off.
That’s the thing that no one tells you: when you realize that you’re beaten, it’s perfectly okay to just walk off of the field. No one stitches “Quitting Early Conserves Resources” onto throw pillows, but it’s true. Who knows, maybe there’s a perfect location waiting for you in Magnolia, Arkansas or Nacogdoches, Texas, or any town with more than 10,000 people and no sign of Southern Classic activity whatsoever, not even a pickled jalapeño stem in the parking lot of a Piggly Wiggly.
Maybe it’s time we put out that old flame you’ve been keeping lit for Shreveport and call it a day…or a thousand days, which is how long you’ve been asking the internet to send Shreveport more fried chicken.
Deep-fried macaroni and Dr. Pepper wing sauce do sound good, though.
More Stuff to Read