Today...a reminiscence about my childhood and a not-so-healthy-but-then-we-didn't-eat-it-very-often treat, and a warning to my Gentle Readers.
My family and I come from a nearby state, and my parents' relatives all lived in a fairly near-by town, but one in which I did not grow up.
Generally, when we went "up there", we went to a place called Coley's and ate...Coley's special which was "Coney Islanders"--or as the young folks say today, a chili dog.
Coley's exists no more, but I can see in my mind the varnished pine booths, with a window looking out on the Coca-Cola bottling plant. It was sort of a dive, in a not-very-good part of town.
And people flocked to Coley's. My mom said that all you had to say to my widowed grandmother was, "Let's go to Coley's!" and she had her coat and purse before you knew it.
Yes, I'm sure there were other items on the menu, but our family always got the coneys. I loved them. I learned at an early age to douse them with Louisiana Hot Sauce--not Tabasco, but Louisiana Hot Sauce. They were wonderful. Wonderful. I think I had my last Coley's coney in the 70s when Coley's opened a sort of "last stand" operation in a very nice part of town for people like me who are in the grip of nostalgia. And who like a good coney.
It didn't last all that long, and Coley's is a thing of the past. But the love it engendered in me for Louisiana Hot Sauce will last fo-evah...I even bought a new bottle the other day and was delighted to note that the cost was 50 cents. The great big bottle is about $2-something. Not bad at all.
Having memories like going to Coley's with my parents, looking out at the Coca-Cola bottling center, and generally swilling Coca-Cola with my highly nourishing coneys--well, that is a good thing. We went very infrequently--just enough to remind ourselves that some foods are treats. Of course, I can go down the street to Coney-Islander here in town and get four coneys, complete with grated cheese and minced onion. And Louisiana Hot Sauce. And I can wash them down with lots more Coca-Cola than I would have imagined as a kid. Occasional treats have become the steady diet. And we wonder why Americans struggle with their weight...and their health.
But I digress. I simply have happy memories of Coley's with Mom and Dad and the Brothers. And other people who went with us. It was a simpler time, and I remember my parents that way.
However, today, I had some high-roughage salad (coleslaw...the ubiquitous coleslaw at work...and this variety had lots of purple cabbage and carrot in it. This is a good thing, but keep in mind, lots of fiber...) doused heavily with Louisiana Hot Sauce.
So in the interests of Public Health, I would like to post this Warning:
Never, never eat extremely high fiber food when you haven't eaten much for a few days. Particularly if you drench it in Louisiana Hot Sauce.
Be warned...be very warned...your body will not know what hit it, and you will be making a run for that locale the French so charmingly have named the salon du bain. And I mean run in the literal sense...
(And remember, I am looking for a new place to live by end of February so find a way to get all recommendations to me. I'm interested. Yes, I am.)
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