Jollibee: Where Filipinos and Fried Chicken Unite

Ko Joy ’24

Kismis Connoisseur

Jollibee: The holy grail of Filipino fried chicken. KFC has nothing on Jollibee. The crispy Jollibee Chicken Joy is a traditional Filipino delicacy that not even Popeyes can imitate, and do not get me started on the Peach Mango Pie that puts Poptarts to shame. Every time I visit Jollibee (none in Connecticut but get to New York City asap), my tastebuds are in greasy heaven while the chismis [gossip] of Filipinos is music to my ears. 

Right now, the chismis is all about the one man who hates Jollibee. He-who-must-not-be-named is a decent famous music producer that disappointed the hearts of Filipinos around the world so much that they are scrolling past all of his songs at the karaoke bar. Selena Gomez is under fire for just being in the proximity of the man who cannot stomach sweet spaghetti with mini hot dog slices sprinkled in the sauce.

It is astounding that he cannot comprehend that Jollibee is the quintessential icon of Filipino culture, besides our love for karaoke and ricecookers. Where else can I and other fellow Filipinos sit down at a restaurant and eat fried chicken and fan-favorite adobo rice with our hands, away from the gentrified onlookers, and discuss which family members are studying to be nurse practitioners? The statue of Jollibee the human-sized bee, in all its red and buzzing glory that even outshines Mickey Mouse, stands tall at the front of the restaurant, paving the way for our ancestors who only survived on Spam Tocino and Vienna Sausage before being shipped to the U.S. in the 1900s. 

If there is one thing about us Filipinos, it is that we are not easily placated by weak apologies or clumsy praises of Jollibee’s Spicy Chicken Sandwich (the sriracha mayo is to die for, though). While we raise our blood pressure and cholesterol levels from the rich gravy on top of our Chicken Joy and Yumburgers (not hamburgers), we thank our leader, Bretman Rock, for putting He-who-must-not-be-named in his place with the power of great hair and Filipino melanin.       

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