Sunday, November 29, 2015

From The Beloved Dale Thankyounote


[found in Potomac Yard of the Richmond, Fredericksburg and Potomac Railway, scrawled on a sheet of plywood in the traditional hobo hieroglyphs (eastern dialect) - unearthed during construction of Metro's Blue and Yellow lines in 1976]

Dear Niles Butterbal, The Frozen Turkey,

I thought a note was in order. Hopefully, this one finds you well and happy.

Ol' Barb and I had a lovely time with you and your crew on Thanksgiving, and we are immensely thankful, not only for your hospitality and the wonderful day, but for your invaluable friendship. Your very presence in our difficult lives is one of our most precious blessings.

We thoroughly enjoyed the aspic made from coagulated crabgrass oil, lint, and peanut shells, and your decorations of dead leaves and squirrel skins was second to none.

I especially appreciated the hobo wine. Its foundation was solidly buttery, but its subtle notes of dandelion, hat sweat and lint, hovering just above a subtext of creosote and cinder gave it a complexity that few road brews can claim. Sure, Ol' Barb thought it tasted like a dog poo salad baked in the Texas heat for two days before being strained through a used birthing cloth into a week-old diaper - but she thinks everything tastes like that, so don't pay her no mind. I thought it was yummy.

We were also impressed by your holiday attire - newspaper top hat and tails, burlap gown - not to mention pants! And shoes! So fancy. I know you said it was no big thing, but please accept, once more, my apologies for our appearance. In Virginia, tar is considered clothing. We'll do better, next year - if you'll have us.

As for the meal itself, what can I say? The pigeon was roasted perfectly, and the doghouse straw and sludge added a distinctive pungency that words cannot adequately describe. The mashed dirt was smooth as can be, and the sour pus, human bacon and wild onion grass topping was criminally-delicious. So salty and alive!

Your incessant insults and utter failure to miss a single, solitary opportunity to contradict, correct, or otherwise reprimand or publicly shame us were really just icing on the cake.  We can't wait to see you again, in our camp, for Christmas.

Thanks again!

Love, The Beloved Dale Thankyounote, and Ol' Barb

Prompted, once again, by my buds at STUDIO 30-PLUS, this was in keeping with the theme of "Thankful."



  1. You had me at "hat sweat." I'm the dog pen cleaner at our abode, so I know all about that straw. It would be an irresistible garnish. ;)

    1. Ah, the fictitious, Hodgman-ized diet of the American hobo...
      It was hard to resist describing more of the meal - in WAY too much detail!