Seafood. No Thank You!

By TaShia Hogue

When you think of New Orleans, the Big Easy, Louisiana, you think of great music, culture, and the abundance of food. However, many people give me the side-eye when I voice the unpopular opinion: “I dislike seafood.” The texture, the scales, the mess, the tangy, the smell, the flavor, just only salt? Did I say the smell again?? Uh, can’t get it out my nostrils.

Many of the restaurant menus out here cater to seafood lovers, but what about those who’d rather have a ten-piece Korean BBQ wing from Who Dats?

When I announced the school that I’d be attending to my friend groups, one of the main responses I got was how they assumed I was going to be out here eating good, but little did we know I was surrounding myself with fish, fish, and more fish. So I took to these Xavier streets to find out, am I alone? Are there more Xavierites like me, who just ain’t feeling the fish, or their cousins in the water? Seafood, No Thank You! Where ma’ tribe at!

Michaela Gurley is a second-year accounting major, at Xavier from East St. Louis, Mo. who enjoys seafood but not to the extent of the norm here. I caught her in the cafe on Catfish Friday, yes of all days (eye roll).

Michaela Gurley is a second-year accounting major, at Xavier from East St. Louis, Mo. 

“Just because I go to school In New Orleans doesn’t mean I like seafood,” Gurley told me in line around the salad. “I feel like crawfish is overrated. People say it’s so good, but you have to do a lot of work just to get a little piece of meat. You have to peel it back, break it in half, all of that, I’d rather not have to do all of that just to eat,” Gurley said.

When I’m hungry I want to be able to dive right into my food, so I wouldn’t want to tussle with it either. No matter how many times I give crab legs, shrimp, or gumbo a chance. I’ve concluded that it’ll either be a hit or miss and for me, it just never hits.

Bre’Anna Stevens is a sophomore English education major from Houston, Texas. During our chit chat on seafood dishes and cuisines, she admitted to enjoying seafood sometimes, but also felt that it’s overrated.

“Any type of shellfish is too complicated to eat, in my opinion,” Stevens said. “Another reason I’m not a huge fan of seafood is because I dislike messy and spicy food.”

There are many dishes that fall under the seafood umbrella that I haven’t tried, but I can’t get past that smell. The seafood boil bags might look appealing with the well-seasoned corn and buttery potatoes, but as soon as you tear open the bag there goes my appetite.

Bre’Anna Stevens is a sophomore English education major from Houston, Texas. 

John Turner is a sales and marketing major from Chicago, Ill and he gets it.

“Don’t see the hype around seafood. For the proportions and cost, seafood is simply overrated,” Turner said.

Don’t even get me started on the taxes added to the meal cost. Whenever I’d mention my distaste for seafood in class, my peers would ask “then why are you here?” Geographically, the state of Louisiana has shorelines along the Gulf of Mexico, making it “one of North America’s most productive shrimp, oyster and crab fisheries,” according to its “get with it or get out” website.

No wonder, seafood is one of the leading food factors that Louisiana restaurant menus have to offer. The food is in their backyard. Despite the limitations, there are cultural dishes here that can still be enjoyed without seafood and alternatives to satisfy our hunger.

So, the next time you plan a dinner date with friends, pick a restaurant with a multitude of food selections, don’t be shellfish.

To learn more about the state’s favorite fishy stuff I ain’t feeling go here!: https://www.louisianatravel.com/articles/louisiana-essentials-food#:~:text=The%20two%20most%20popular%20types,Creole%20jambalaya%20and%20Cajun%20jambalaya.

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