Tap-tap-tap. Class, pay attention. I’m going to teach you a new word today. It’s called “gavage.” Say it out loud. No, not like “savage,” Little Jimmy. It’s pronounced like “garage.” That’s right, Mary: guhvahzh. Really resonate that last syllable in your mouth. What? No Patty, “garvage” is not a word.
Gavage. Do any of you know what it means?
No, Jimmy, it’s not the trash you run over in your garage.
No, Mary, it’s not a battlefield dressing invented during the French revolution.
What’s that, Patty? No. Absolutely not. That’s not even humanly possible.
Take notes, class. “Gavage” is a French term for “force-feeding.” Surely your mommies and daddies have forced you to finish your dinner at one time or another, but it’s not quite that. Gavage is what people do when they insert a tube down another person’s throat and — often with a funnel — pour food and liquid down into the gullet.
I don’t know what a beer bong is, but I highly doubt it. Gavage is a technique used in emergency rooms, not pubs. A gavage can save the life of the malnourished. On the other hand, it has also been used for despicable reasons. Does anyone here know what foie gras is?
No Jimmy, it’s not frog water.
No, Mary, it’s not force feeding people frog legs in France.
Yes, Patty! My gosh, you’re right! It’s the liver of a goose that has been force fed grain over and over again — through gavage — until the organ is bursting with rich, buttery flavor! I had no idea you were such a gourmet!
Because it relies on gavage, foie gras is extremely controversial. Animal rights activists protest the cruel practice, while some chefs argue that all the animals we feed on already are subject to…
[Sigh.] Yes, Patty? What’s that? You call it “moi gras“? I’m not sure what that means, but see me after class, please.
Okay, everyone. Let’s move to the next lesson. Open your books to page 96, “Slaughterhouse Law.”