Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Bean Soup

My good friend Leah has wanted for years to go to the Bean Soup Festival in McClure. That Leah. Seems that years and years ago, a mutual friend, Bob S., told her that the soup at this festival is the best bean soup he ever tasted. Please note that his initials are BS.

Good ol' Bob is now in an Alzheimer's unit in a nursing home, but never mind. Back in the day, he was a well-respected school principal. Better respected by Leah and my husband Niks than by me. I always figured that a man who had been married three times had some issues with taste, if you know what I mean.

Anyway this festival is to hell and gone and out in the middle of nowhere. I still can't explain where the heck it is. On the way there, we saw this:


Can you read what it says? It reads, "Deer Hide Drop Bin." You know you are in the deep country when there are deer hide drop bins.

Anyhoo, you also know that if a tiny town has had a Bean Soup Festival for 118 years that bean soup is going to be the very best bean soup in the entire known world. I mean, it's not a SOUP festival, it's a BEAN soup festival. They know how to make bean soup.

One might think that, in fact, they make more than one type of bean soup. Like that. But no. They make ONE bean soup. So, must be absolutely perfect bean soup.

You guys. Such fools. Like Leah, Niks and me.

The bean soup at the McClure Bean Soup festival is the absolute WORST bean soup any of us had ever eaten. Or not eaten as in the case of Leah and me. Niks will eat anything apparently. The three of us searched diligently and never found one bean in the three bowls of soup that we had between us. No ham either.

At the pulled-pork sandwich stand where Leah and I went to buy something, anything, to get the taste of the bean soup out of our mouths, the women there told us that yes, indeed, the bean soup is the worst in the world, year after year. The cooks don't use many beans and they cook them until they disappear. They don't use any ham or ham stock or a ham bone. They use hamburg meat and suet. SUET! I'm going to be sick!

They have a queen at this little festival. We saw her in person. She's young, so she still has a few teeth. Leah and I thought we might count the total teeth at the festival to amuse ourselves, but finally decided we might as well count heads. 'Bout the same thing. The runner-up to the queen was prettier than the queen, so I guess the contest was fixed. But it is hard to pick the best between three young ladies. Some might call the runner-up, "next to last." I'm glad they don't do that.

Here's a picture of Niks and me to prove that we were there! At the BEAN SOUP FESTIVAL. We can check that off our bucket list.

35 comments:

Doug said...

Deer hide drop bin! I have lived deep in the heart of redneck but never seen that.

You and Niks look full of beans.

Tom & Icy said...

Maybe it should be 'near bean soup' like near-beer without alcohol. Bean soup with the farts boiled out just isn't the real thing.

TLP said...

Doug, "full of beans" another way of sayin' I'm fat???? whine, sob...

I bet there's no fartin' at this bean festival. We considered taking Beano with us. Glad we didn't bother.

Ariel the Thief said...

Near bean soup, LOL Tom!

I enjoyed the report. :-)

Libby said...

..."Bean soup with the farts boiled out just isn't the real thing."
Oh, LOLOLOL!!!! you're killing me!!!
tlp, the popcorn festival belongs on your bucket list too!! next year, you guys are coming, okay? mark your calendar, the first weekend after Labor Day, 'kay?

TLP said...

It was not even NEAR bean soup Ariel! Not close.

Does the Popcorn Festival have POPCORN???? If it does Libby, maybe we can make it. We've done a few crazier things.

Fred said...

I don't like beans. I would have passed on the trip just because Mom made me eat lima beans and I just about puked every time.

What happened to the crowds?

kenju said...

That's the funniest thing I've read all week!! Bean soup with no beans, no ham? What the heck IS in it?

Libby said...

tlp-this town is nothing but popcorn (wyandot popcorn is in town, it's a big company for marion), and you'd love this! we have a huge parade thurs nite, with 'miss teeny pop' and everybody else and schools are all closed friday!

TLP said...

Fred, they tell us the crowd comes out at night. We were not brave enough to drive those country roads after dark. But judging from the lack of crafts, games, etc., I'm doubting they get much of a crowd.

Judy, it's only funny if you aren't the one with a bad taste that hangs on and on! LARD and SUET are the main ingredients.

If the schools close for it Libby, it must be good! I'm adding it to my bucket list.

actonbell said...

Haha! I was looking forward to finally reading this. Funny stuff:)

tsduff said...

Holy cow - The Bear and I are still guffawing! We've been eating beans for the past several days (good meatless protein) and suffering the normal repercussions. We don't have any beano. What a big disappointment at the Bean Festival - ha ha ha ha. Lard and suet - bleah. I'm glad Niks survived.

Rachel said...

I laughed all through this post!! I have never seen a deer hide bin drop before! Who would have ever thought of such a thing??

I surprised a bean soup festival wouldn't have beans in the soup for Pete's sake! Suet?? Oh, they thought the birds were coming apparently!! LOL

TLP said...

Acton, I know you heard me tell it, but I had to blog about it.

Terry, there was no fartin' at the festival. Not one little poot.

I don't think the birds would bother with this soup Rachel!

lime said...

good gravy, the recipe sounds ghaastly. actually i am thinking a bowl full of good gravy would have been a vast improvement in terms of eating pleasure. did you need to shave your tongue after tasting the "soup?"

the7msn said...

TLP, those black boxes must work - 'cause you guessed correctly about what was behind door #3!

TLP said...

I really did feel the need to scrape my tongue Lime!

Welcome the7msn! So I got it right! Rumors of my dumbness are greatly exaggerated. (Don't ask my family however.)

Trixie said...

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!

*breathe*

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!


*breathe*

You had me doing that all the way through that post. Thanks for dropping by via blackbloxing. You truly are funny.

*wipes tears from cheeks*

Miranda said...

heh heh, that's hilarious! Look forward to reading more. Thanks for your visit to mine. I'll be back

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

LOL, LOL, LOL...I really did laugh out loud at this whole post! Thank you dear TLP for this! That soup is like The Emporers New Clothes, isn't it? One wonders what they are thinking about with this Festival...Does anyone there think the Soup is really good? LOL! Oh Lordy....There is always something else to surprise one in this crazy world we live in, isn't there....! I'm glad you took that picture, too, cause I'm not sure we would have believed you if we hadn't seen it with our own eyes!LOL!

Casdok said...

How disapointing for you. Im surprised its been going so long. Hope your sandwich was better!

liz fenwick said...

Loved the post.........bean soup indeed!

Bela said...

I thought England was quaint when I first landed here, but this is something else. LOL!

TLP said...

Thanks Trixie.

Welcome Miranda.

Wish you'd been there Naomi. You would have taken better pictures.

Casdok, so little happens in that area I guess anything is a good thing.

Liz, I'll never think of bean soup in the same way.

England is quaint. PA is hickville.

Exmoorjane said...

TLP this is fab! Thank you so much for dropping by my blog (isn't that black box widget just the best?!) but really, not sure I can see the allure of eating out if you get non-bean soup!
Pass me a deer hide or two though.... we get red deer here on Exmoor but you'd pay a fortune for a hide.
Hilarious post - now I'm scooting off to read more.....
jane xx

AP3 said...

Now, see, I wouldn't have known that the Bean Soup Festival was on your bucket list...

Now you need to see the National Plumbing Museum (in Worcester).

SgtBenner said...

I think that you don't know how to eat it. You just can't eat it as is...you must add all the crackers and a good bit of salt and pepper. Another thing is this Bean Soup Festival was started by local Civil War Veterans. Please do some reading at this website: www.keystoneguards.org there is more to this Bean Festival then people know about.

tsduff said...

TLP - This black box is fabulous. Just what I need to fill all my lonely hours looking for work.

OldHorsetailSnake said...

I also ducked out to visit Exmoorjane. She's an interesting piece of work, really.

PI said...

I live near Exmoor and have never heard of Exmoor Jane.
I think the deeer hide bin is to jump into and watch the deer.
You Americans have all the fun:)

G said...

You and Niks look quite dapper - especially after bad bean soup!

ReesePie said...

I think the deer hide goes IN the soup. Or if it doesn't maybe it would improve the flavor...

(I'm the skunk mama...)

actonbell said...

Hey, your black box is really cool!

Bill Stankus said...

Well, I'm glad you dropped by via the B Box!

Fred said...

Yessss! I finally got here via BB. Now, if I could only remember the choices.