A Thought On Chips

May these words of my mouth and this meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.

  • Psalm 19:29-31

My mouth will speak words of wisdom; the meditation of my heart will give you understanding.

  • Psalm 49:3

Gracious words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.

  • Proverbs 16:24

You say you have the counsel and the might for war—but you speak only empty words. On whom are you depending, that you rebel against me?

  • 2 Kings 18:20

When Asa heard these words and the prophecy of Azariah son of Oded the prophet, he took courage. He removed the detestable idols from the whole land of Judah and Benjamin and from the towns he had captured in the hills of Ephraim. He repaired the altar of the Lord that was in front of the portico of the Lord’s temple.

  • 2 Chronicles 15:8

I have a few things to say about the word “chips.”  Singular, plural, it makes no difference.  As Burt Lahr, the guy who played the cowardly lion in The Wizard of Oz, said many times on the old Lays commercials, “I bet you can’t eat just one.”  So, I will refer to chips.

I’m a little upset about the word “chips,” a word that can be a noun or a verb.  You could say that it has me chipped.  Or I could have a chip on my shoulder.  Have you ever been dared to knock the chip off someone’s shoulder?  Someone who dared to place a chip on their shoulder just to say that to you?  Did the bully who did that look foolish when you ignored them and walked away and he is left standing there with a literal chip on his shoulder?  Or did you do it?  You knew you would lose the fight.  Bullies don’t place chips on their shoulders against someone they could not easily defeat.  You might end up with a chipped tooth.

But when I think of chips, my mouth waters.  Forget wood chips (shavings from sawing or smoothing wood with a plane, splinters, ships from chopping with an axe, saw dust, etc..)  When I hear the word chips, I think of potato chips and maybe corn chips.  But these days, especially with a wife born in Indonesia, I have to expand that to kerupuk (or krupuk in Japanese).  What?  You don’t know?  Indonesian kerupuk is shrimp chips.  My wife likes to get them raw and fry them up fresh, but they come in bags these days, ready to eat.

If I were in England or Scotland or near an English pub in many other countries, chips would be part of fish and chips.  No chips.  Just French fries.

I have a question?  When did sliced pickles become chips?  Most of the major brands have “chips” on the jars.  They were slices when I was growing up.  It gets confusing.  Especially when a favorite treat at many barbeque restaurants (and other restaurants) is deep-fried pickle slices.  So, a second question…  At what point does a pickle chip, battered and fried, turn back into a pickle slice although it finally looks more like a chip?!?!

Now, if you are a fan of old TV shows or you live in California, you might think of CHiPs, a show about two motorcycle cops working for the California Highway Patrol.  Who ever thought of using a motorcycle police siren as a musical instrument?  If you do not get that reference, listen to the theme song.

But what made me think of this?  I drove past a sign the other day, a road construction sign.  Fresh Oil and Chips.  No, they were not advertising a roadside vegetable stand that had potato chips and freshly made olive oil.  No, there are uses of “chips” in the Pittsburgh, PA, USA area that defy logic.  I suddenly was in fear of having my windshield chipped.  Fresh oil and chips is really placing a fresh coating of an asphalt-like liquid on the road and then covering it with crushed rock.  The “oil” might technically be in the oil family, but it is more like asphalt.  Yes, asphalt is not the mixture of a tar-like substance and crushed rock, it is a hydrocarbon material like tar, when hot a liquid and at normal outdoor temperatures a solid.  And the “chips” are tiny pebble sized crushed stones.  You’d get a chipped tooth trying to eat one for sure.  And it becomes highly likely that you will get a chipped windshield because the other drivers will drive like maniacs and much of the crushed rock is loose.  AND they have covered the center lines, thus driving is a free-for-all, usually on the wrong side of the road at excessive speeds on pavement that has loose gravel.

When you see the sign “Fresh Oil and Chips” it really means “disaster season in Pittsburgh.”

But before I leave the word “chip” behind, have you ever heard of “chipped-chopped ham?”  In the known civilized world, this is a word meaning a ham loaf.  You take chopped ham, those pieces that are not good for slicing, and might be the poorer quality portions of the ham, and you chip them up, grind them.  Then you reconstitute that ground meat into a loaf and slice it for sandwiches.

But in Pittsburgh, and according to some articles online, it is the ONLY place where chipped-chopped ham means shaved ham.  Shaved ham is thinner than thin sliced ham.  You can practically see through it.  The main use of it, other than just eating it in a sandwich, is to dump this chipped-chopped ham into a bowl of warm barbeque sauce.  With the salt of the cured ham and the salt in the barbeque sauce, you can get a coronary just looking at the dripping meat in the middle of the bun.

And although I said nothing about Jesus, called the Word in John and Revelation, this article hopefully illustrates why language and context are important.  When the meaning of words constantly changes, confusion results, misdirection results, even offense results.  We have the technology, but let’s slow down the language change for a moment.  There is Truth although the world has gone mad.  We need to turn to the Word, Jesus.  I find it calming after thinking of so much change, just in one word alone that I can turn to the One, Jesus, who is the same yesterday, today, and forever.

Soli Deo Gloria.  Only to God be the Glory.


Add yours →

  1. atimetoshare.me October 4, 2022 — 7:06 pm

    Ha ha you made me lol🥸

    Liked by 1 person

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