Sunday, October 14, 2007

Beard hair nets make everything OK.

I may not be rich. I may not be pretty. I may not know what it’s like to celebrate a ten year wedding anniversary despite the fact that I have been perpetually married since 1983.

But after this weekend, I can say that I am among the elite few to have ever been served a barrel full of fried food… out of a trailer… by a man wearing a beard hair net and a T-shirt that read, “Ass, grass or gas. Nobody rides for free”.

And a vest. A leather vest.

AND I stood in line for nearly a half hour for the privilege.

Feel free to allow the waves of envy wash over you.

Every year the Evil Red-Headed Berta Lou and I go forth in her SUV to a craft fair about an hour or so away from home. It’s a large event held outdoors and a very popular one at that. Women in kitty-cat sweaters come from all across the Midwest in hopes that they might obtain purses made from old jeans or joy of joys, a front porch sitting, four foot wooden Santa Claus holding a sign that says, “I’m not that happy to see you. That really is a candy cane in my pocket”.

While I love a nice quilted ceiling fan blade cozy as much as the next girl, I actually go to the craft fair for two reasons and two reasons only.

1. Food that only smells good at craft fairs and that I would never eat in a million years unless I was at a craft fair and protected by the law that says food cooked outside in autumn is safe for human consumption even when prepared by prison escapees.

2. To feel superior to others.

This year it was raining and cold and packed to the fences with middle-aged women wearing Crocs, fanny packs and appliqu├ęd sweatshirts.

Reasons #1 and #2: check.

Besides the joy that was food and superiority, there was so much cool stuff to see, I could barely take it all in.

One booth featured the work of a talented artist who drew intricate winter scenes on a variety of unusual canvasses. I’m no art critic, but I’m saying if you can perfectly capture a snowman family holding hands under a starry sky like a bunch of Walton snowmen…ON AN OLD TOASTER…you have a very bright future indeed. The world is the oyster of a professional Christmas toaster painter.

Another booth was just some old guy sitting at a table with his stack of paperback books. He was the author. I know that because he’s there every year and always has a hand written sign that says, “Meet the author” on the back of a piece of cardboard beside the yellowed editions. Even though he’s at least 107, I am always overcome with the urge to knock him out cold and take his place. If I do not have a book of my own, I have no problem pretending my name is Nathaniel and I have written a compelling turn of the century tale of cowboy woe.

Woe is woe, as near as I can tell.

While there were innumerable crocheted doll clothes, wooden trash cans with the word TRASH carved down the front of them and countless purses made out of 1998 calendars and duct tape, my award for best item at the craft fair has to go to the guy selling “cheese serving plates”.

Using some magical method, he had taken glass beer bottles of all kinds from the dump, flattened them, and cleverly recognized that nothing says “may I offer you some cheese” like a flat Corona bottle.

I found myself intrigued by his ability to convince the masses to give him nearly twenty bucks for something so utterly redneck, the word redneck doesn’t even describe it. I cannot even imagine a world where anything would ever be served to anyone for any reason in the belly of a flattened out beer bottle.

But maybe that’s just my jealousy talking. The truth is I too would become a cheese serving plate entrepreneur if I knew how to suck the air out of dirty old beer bottles.

On second thought, if I knew how to suck a beer bottle flat, I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have to make my millions selling crap at a craft fair.

Copyright © 2004-2007, Sherri Bailey
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delmer said...

Oh man. The last line still has me laughing.

Was anybody selling deep-fried Twinkies? Or are they available only at state fairs?

Sher said...

There are fried Twinkies??? I have a reason to live now.

Thank you.

Nancy said...

"would you like some cheese?"

Bwahahahah @ the last line (Delmer and I have the same sense of humor)

and ... you've never had a deep-fried twinkie? Actually, don't feel left out, they aren't that good, IMHO.

Sher said...

I did fry some hot dogs the other day and they were fantastic. My son saw it done on the Food Network and begged for weeks so I gave in.

Wonder what else we can fry???

Anonymous said...

Ahhhh, She's back with a vengeance.
Craft shows...where else can you go see the same stuff 2 or 3 years in a row . I'm, not talking the same kind of stuff, I mean the same stuff!
I hope you looked crafty. Peasant blouse, long denim skirt, and Birkenstocks, a couple flowers in your hair and a bunch of beads wouldn't hurt either.

Did you pick-up one of those stacks of 3 or 4 cut off tree limbs with the solar lights and the plastic elves glued on or did you go for the fish?

Jami said...

Honey, you need to get out more ... or at least make it to a bigger venue. They now have not only fried Twinkies, but also fried Oreos, fried Snickers and fried Coca-Cola. And no, I do NOT know how they do it but technology is WONDERFUL, isn't it?

A ceiling fan cozy? I assume that's for the winter to keep the fan from getting chilly. And of course the trash can has "TRASH" carved on the front; that's so you can tell it from the other cans in your house. I just realized I've know some people how should have had that carved on THEIR cans.

Glad you're back!

Jami said...

Stupid fingers! You send 'em to school and they still can't spell worth spit. Last sentence above should be: "I just realized I've known some people who should have had that carved on THEIR cans."

Sher said...

Alas, no peasant clothing. I saw no plastic elves, but I did see about one-hundred-thousand kitchen towels tied in the shape of angels. (Because whenever I think of angels, I always think of kitchen towels.)

What??? Fried Coke? We're talking about the beverage right? Fried Snickers?!

I must Google "things I can fry" without delay.

Flutterby said...

Candy bars are stuck on sticks, dipped in some kind of cake type batter and fried... that is also how they do the Twinkies.
Nothing says chic to a redneck like anything with a beer logo, too much yarn, or applique.

Sher said...

If only I could figure out how to applique a Corona cheese plate.

I'm gonna be rich.

Anonymous said...

You bought the Corona cheese plate didn't you?!

Flutterby said...

I have one of those dish towel angels. My step-grandmother gave it to me years ago. She was so proud of it I didn't have the heart to even try and *accidentally* forget to bring the tacky ass thing home with me. She would have just mailed it anyway. And I bought a 12 pack of Coronas this morning for this weekends' rib cookout. Shall I send you the empties?

Jaesoreal said...

Since I am bald, would I need to wear a hair net? I wish you had a picture of that beard net! Hilarious!

Sher said...

Check it out, was MADE to go over his beard I think as it tucked behind his ears with long elastic strings. I wish I had a pic, too. Shoulda whipped out the camera phone.