It was a few minutes before 11 a.m. and Bill Adams had two things on his mind: Brunswick stew and cracklin cornbread.
To satisfy his craving for meat stew and fried pig skin, this lifelong Georgia boy made the hour-long drive Tuesday from his home in Griffin to Harold’s Barbecue in south Atlanta. When he and his friends learned this was to be Harold’s last week in business, they made plans for a final pilgrimage.
“Just wanted to stop by for one last meal,” the longtime patron said as he waited in the restaurant’s dusty parking lot for doors to open. He wasn't alone; there were about a dozen others, including a pair of Georgia State Troopers.
“It’s inevitable. Everything changes. Nothing lasts forever,” he said. “We don’t like it but we can’t stop it.”
The popularity of the mint julep is rooted as much in the nation's capital as it is in Louisville. Karin Caifa has the report.
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On a sunny morning early last September, Susanna Gaxiola fed her husband a healthy breakfast of fresh cantaloupe in their Albuquerque, New Mexico, home. Her husband, Rene, a Pentecostal pastor and minister, had been fighting a rare blood cancer and he was eating fresh cantaloupe and other fruit daily.
Around the same time, Paul Schwarz ate fresh cantaloupe in his home in Independence, Missouri. Though 92 years old, Schwarz was still active and healthy, and ate fresh fruit often. And Dr. Mike Hauser, a podiatrist, also ate fresh cantaloupe with his family in Monument, Colorado. Hauser, 68, had been fighting myeloma, a blood cancer, but he was recovering well, even planning a bow-hunting trip in the mountains.
Within days or weeks of eating the cantaloupe, all three men became horribly sick, and all eventually died painful deaths. Their deaths were directly caused by the cantaloupe, which was contaminated with the deadly bacteria Listeria, according to health officials.
It was an accident, the kind of split-second disaster played out in corporate lunch rooms around noon every day. I reached into the fridge to grab my cubby of leftovers from amongst the other tubs and containers, and out fell somebody else’s.
The yellow Tupperware tumbled off its perch, conked into a shelf and flipped to land on the floor – face down, lid off, pasta strewn. Lunch? Served.
Even if you subscribe to the 5-second rule, it surely does not apply to linguine and seasoned chicken chunks. Mop-sop-scoop? Wait – with hands? Ick. Container? Better. There could be no delusions of pretend-it-never-happened.
Mess disposed, evidenced tidied, floor sanitized, I washed the mystery person’s container, warmed my waiting pasta and beanballs, then returned to my desk to type a note to my coworkers.
Subject line: “Sorry about your lunch.”
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