Habanero II, The Original Chile Pepper Horse

Dateline Curio, April 29th:

Describing their accomplishment as a marriage of cloning and recombinant DNA technologies to take advantage of the latest racetrack performance enhancement techniques, McChump Industries scientists today triumphantly announced the existence of Habanero II, the first racehorse specifically "bred" to take advantage of the known performance enhancing properties of red chili powder.

When asked why McCI was taking this brave step into the unknown, given the relative infancy of its cloning-only operation, managing partner McChump #2 answered as follows:

"Well, we had a big headstart on them other outfits when it come to straight cloning, but it seems like everyone's getting into the act nowadays. The futures on our little Cigars done dropped a ton in just the past coupla months once Allen Paulson announced he'd be gettin' into the act, too. So we decided we needed to keep ahead a the curve and offer our customers something they couldn't get from any other source. Namely cloned, genetically altered hosses designed specifically to respond to certain performance enhancing substances at the track. And given the ongoing never-say-die popularity of the stuff, and its relative cheap cost, we chose red chili powder."

So are these animals something like weevil-resistant cotton and herbicide tolerant soybeans?

"Exactly. In fact, we stole one a them scientists right offa Calgene to do that recombinate DNA stuff for us. Except, 'stead of makin' something resistant to somethin' else, we went the other way, whole hog, and made it way more receptive. You're not gonna believe these babies at the track once they get a little shot of thet're cayenne. Just the tiniest pinch between the cheeks and WHAMMO! Ya'd think ya got yerself one a them Tasmanian Devil thingies."

Uh ... okay. By the way ... Habanero II? What became of Habanero I?

McChump #2 gazed sadly over at a patch of jalapeno, California chile, and habanero peppers slowly ripening on the vine in the hot Arizona sun, in the center of which it looked as though a small explosion had taken place.

"Well, he, uh it, loosened up the latch ta his stall one night and ... nah. You really don't want to know. Les just say we're going to have to supply a user's manual, that's fer sure."

A large !SPLAT! of tobacco juice hit the ground at this reporter's feet.


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