Hallucinogenic Hushpuppies

May06/ 2015

There is no other logical conclusion.   The hushpuppies at Backyard BBQ on Hwy 55 in Morrisville have potent hallucinogenic properties.  Tuesday last I munched on those potent ‘puppies while confabbing the complexities of UNC’s Glorious Mess with esteemed essayist John Shelton Reed, and The Bard of The Brickyard – The Real Bob Kennel (TRBK). …… Uh Oh!

john_shelton_reed-140x140-(1)Why did I assemble this ad hoc Blue/ Red Ribbon Committee?  Why did the chicken cross the road?   Why did the Seahawks pass over the middle?  Why did Josh Hamilton ever move to LA?   Why did Pernell Roberts leave Bonanza?  In each case “it seemed like a good idea at the time.”

This possibly prickly pairing actually turned out better than those other decisions did.   The grand plans….. “they oughtas” …… “somebody shoulds”, and “how much more dirt is still under the rug” discussions went on for over three hours.   That was Kennel’s part.   JSR and I got in our 30 second rebuttals when TRBK finally took a breath around 2:45.Kennel

Actually that’s NOT what actually happened at all.   That’s where the hallucinogenic hushpuppies come in.

Backyard BBQ is a true “joint” located about a mile south of I-40 on Hwy 55.   A true “BBQ joint” has to be housed in a physical structure of (1) minimal square footage, (2) marginal stability and (3) significant age.   If you consider yourself a true barbecue aficianado (and who doesn’t?) you know this place is a “good’un” before you even walk in.   It screams “bbq joint” from its gravel parking lot with the hand-lettered sign.   It is cafeteria service by a “hi honey, whatchahave” staff with all the fixins one expects in such a place.  I didn’t see rutabagas on the line but I bet they were there along with collard greens and sweBackyard Barbecue plateet potatoes.

I opted for the “cue and two” with my two sides being double Brunswick stew.   JSR went for a simple bbq sandwich.   I forgot what Kennel got but I heard him tell whoever was listening that he taught Jimmy V to drink sweet tea when V moved down from Iona.

I had prepped JSR about BK so he shot me a grin and we took our seats.   Kennel grabbed the Wild Bill Hickok seat with his back to the wall so no one could sneak up on him as Jack McCall did on Wild Bill that fateful night in Deadwood back in 1876.

What about the hushpuppies?  The reason I am convinced those puppies were laced with some form of mind-altering concoction is that over the course of our “rolling conversation”, Kennel actually came up with what I considered some good ideas.  !!!????  It being a BBQ restaurant, Pigs DID Fly when BK had a good idea.

Not GREAT ideas mind you but several pretty good ones.   The ones about a Free Expression Tunnel under Franklin Street and renaming The Dean Dome for Herb Sendek were not that whippy but JSR gave BK high marks for creativity.

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BREAKING NEWS: The Patriots have NOT Hired Ken Wainstein to investigate their equipment room specifically their ball inflation protocols.  But they might before this is over.“Dickie” is already claiming he has no clue what an “inflating needle” is.….. stay tuned.

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The Conundrum on the table, of course, was how are we (us three) going to once and for all resolve The Great Unpleasantness so that not only The Flagship but the entire UNC System Armada can indeed “move on”.   Apparently Cullowhee, Pembroke and Fayetteville State have come to complete stops waiting for that darn NCAA letter to arrive.

If you missed the announcement that BobLee, John Shelton Reed and The Real Bob Kennel have been put in charge of cleaning out The Augean Stables of Orange County, relax.   We haven’t.   I just figured (1) JSR needed to meet BK and (2) I wanted some Brunswick stew.garden-and-gun-magazine

JSR started us off with his copy of the InsideCarolina goober post claiming JSR is “in cahoots with Eeeeevil Art Pope to destroy UNC Football as a prelude to destroying the entire University”.   JSR thinks “In Cahoots With Eeeevil Art” might be a catchy title for his next book.  Both JSR and I recommended BK check out our favorite magazine – Garden & Gun.

The three of us pretended we were in charge of fixing the TGU mess.  We did NOT discuss the question proposed by the ABCers of how many bulldozers it will take to tear down the whole UNC campus….. or the TruBlue suggestion that Dan Kane be skinned alive.   Neither bulldozers nor Dan Kane were even mentioned.

I can not reveal our most borderline whizbang proposal because to do so might jinx it.   It was BK’s idea but it has ONE serious fatal flaw.

It is a Diogenesian Quest to find one, just one, individual in Tar Heel Nation who still has a nano-shred of public credibility.   Not just among the fops, fools, dwarfs (from Dartmouth) and Provostian bullies of South Bldg but anywhere in Tar Heel Nation including high profile alumni.

We started going thru well-known names we all knew.   When it got down to “bring back Jim Martin” and “BobLee do you think your buddy BOTBob Winston might…..”; we realized the magnitude of the problem.   Andy Griffith, Jack Palance and Stuart Scott are dead and Matt Harvey isn’t available until late October.

Is there ANYONE who could formally represent UNC-CH to deliver a sincere institutional “mea culpa” that would not simply make the mess even messier?Art Chansky

BK jokingly suggested my buddy Art Chansky but that was before AC’s latest column urging Roy to recruit Duke bad boy Rasheed “I didn’t rape nobody” Sulaimon since he has one year of eligibility left…. and could replace JP “D-League Here I Come” Tokoto.   Whenever Artie writes “one of those” I get at least a dozen “your buddy Chansky says……” emails.   Art is “my buddy”.   BOTBob Winston isn’t.

If we can indeed find that one individual in UNCNation with enough credibility to blow out a votive candle, we will put our Final Solution in motion.

We really did have a fine lunch and extended three-way chat-a-thon.  A very good time was had by all……  You all have to promise me you WILL NOT tell Kennel that I thought a few of his ideas were pretty darn good.


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