Monday, October 5, 2015

The Square Peg - Duncan Does Dallas



The Square Peg - Duncan Does Dallas
© S. Bradley Stoner


Okay, I know what you’re thinking... so get your mind out of the blue movie world. This isn’t about blue movies. This morning I saw my neighbor, Duncan Donutz, packing his car for a trip. He was throwing in all the usual things, suitcases, camping chairs, and a big cooler, but not his tent. ‘Must be something special,’ I thought, but rather than speculate, I just wandered over while he was packing.

“Need me to keep an eye on your place while you’re gone?” That’s sort of the neighborly way of saying, ‘Hey... where are you going and how long are you going to be gone?’ without really saying it. That way people have an opportunity to volunteer the info without you asking... and they usually do.

Duncan looked up with a big smile on his face. “Sure... that’d be nice. We’re only going to be gone for a couple of days... we’re going up to the State Fair in Dallas.”

“Going to check out all the critters, eh?”

“Well, yeah, we’ll taking in the animal barns and all, but we’re really looking forward to the food booths. I hear they’ve got some new stuff out this year and I can’t wait to check it out.” Duncan ran through a list of past culinary delights he had tried.

Now y’all might be thinking the standard fair fare, but the Texas State Fair is famous for strange and exotic deep fat fried foods that you really can’t get anywhere else. Now, you have your typicals like the Fry Dog, a hot dog wrapped in French fries then deep fat fried; funnel cakes, those scrumptious sweet deep fat fried breads liberally sprinkled with powdered sugar; deep fried smoked brisket, deep fried peanut butter, jelly and banana sandwiches... things like that.

Then you have your exotics. Ever try deep fat fried sweet tea? How about deep fried Coca Cola? Or, if you’re up early, why not start your day off with a deep fried latte? Anybody up for deep fried butter? There’s a heart attack waiting to happen. Like the spicy side? Try the deep fried sriracha balls... that’ll light your fire. You can top those off with a desert of deep fried bacon cinnamon rolls (pictured), deep fried pumpkin Oreos, or fried cheesecake. Or, if you’re really adventurous, try the Amazeballs, made with chocolate cake, chocolate frosting, maple syrup and bacon pieces are rolled into balls and then, of course, deep fried and then dusted with powdered sugar, drizzled with chocolate and maple syrups and - for the Jimmy Dean in all of us - topped with more bacon crumbles...  yum!

Like Duncan, I’m wondering what new wonders they will come up with this year. It is Texas, after all, and Texans just feel duty bound to top what they did the year before. This is worse than the annual barbeque contest when it comes to one-upsmanship. If you can think of it, some Texan will find a way to deep fat fry it. Doesn’t matter what it is... liquid, solid, or gas, it’ll find its way inside a ball of deep fat fried batter.

“So,” I asked, “are you going to try your hand at inventing one of these delicacies?

Duncan didn’t miss a beat. “You know, I’ve been giving it some serious thought. I’ve got a couple of ideas.”

“Refried Krispy Kreme donuts?”

Duncan made a face. “You’re not making any points here, bub.”

“Well, you could always try deep fried donut flavored coffee... that would appeal to all your brothers in blue.”

“Ya know, I can call a couple of my buddies who aren’t retired... I’m sure they could find some reason to pull you over.”

“That’s okay... I always carry a box of Krispy Kremes with me... all I have to do is get a thermos of Starbucks and we could have a picnic.”

“Ya know, you can be a real...”

“Don’t say it, Duncan... I know the Chief.”

Duncan just snorted. “Go jerk Bingo Bob’s chain.”

“Shoot, I was just following your instructions... you told me to quit jerking his chain and since I have to have some outlet, your name just naturally came up.”

“Yeah? Well Bob is back on the list... besides, he’s more fun than I am.”

“Okay... but don’t say I wasn’t cooperative... y’all have a great time in Dallas... and try not to clog all of your arteries. My circle of friends is shrinking.”

Duncan said, “Thanks,” and went back to finish his packing, mumbling something about that shrinking circle having very little to do with clogged arteries.