Names We Love: An Ode to the Bucket

By Mark Skoultchi

November 10, 2010

In the scorched earth, ever changing and fiendishly competitive landscape known as the fast food industry, since 1957 there has stood a legend, a giant, and an icon.

Throughout this time, its appearance has consistently signaled another plunge into the mysterious and intoxicating world of eleven herbs and spices. Or maybe that mom has thrown in the towel on making dinner (score!).

Yes sir, we are talking about The Bucket.

Everyone knows The Bucket. Hell, people in foreign countries that don’t even have a functioning government know all about The Bucket.

Amazingly, the Bucket has replaced the description of its contents. The container name alone is short hand for crunchy crispy salty goodness.

What other fast food packaging has risen to such shorthand, iconic status? What other package is even remembered? Look at the lame attempts at imitation: the Crawfish Tackle Box (Popeye’s) and the Crave Case (White Castle). Those names seem as temporary, as fleeting as the latest burger wrapper. The Bucket, that name is here to stay.

No need to say, “I’m going to see the Colonel, “ let alone “KFC” or God forbid, “Kentucky Fried Chicken.” Any reference—food, hunger, picnic, snack, dinner, the munchies—combined with “Bucket” and you’ll find an instant friend to ride shotgun just to make sure you return with the prize intact.

The Bucket has even been appropriated as an artistic statement by Buckethead, the enigmatic guitar god. Sure, he claims the bucket is an ironic protest against the slaughter of chickens but dude can shred. Besides, no performer is sporting a Whopper wrapper on stage are they? Thought so.

As if we needed more proof, The Bucket has its own Facebook page. Not as part of KFC, its own damn self.

Go Bucket, Go.

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