I thought I was never going to have sex again.
Funny how out of town you’ll do shit that you wouldn’t THINK of doing at
home. Ribfest? SURE!
There’s some back story here, which I can’t remember. Lewi was going on
about this, how it’s a Clear Channel production, but I’m not into sideshow, I’m
into ROCK AND ROLL!
Not that there isn’t music at Ribfest. Shitkickin’ music. At least tonight.
With Jo Dee Messina. Thursday and Friday was has-been music. Rick
Springfield and Ted Nugent. If you want to know where old players go to die,
just hit Ribfest, where they don’t even charge you an ADMISSION fee, the music is
FREE! Paid for by Miller Beer and a host of other corporate sponsors. That’s the
line of demarcation. If you’re taking money to play, SPONSORSHIP money, even
if you’re charging admission, you’ve jumped the shark (what better than a
has-been expression to describe the reality of has-been musicians?)
But we weren’t there for the music. We were there for the ribs.
The scam is it’s a cash-less event. You pay for everything with tickets.
OVERPRICED tickets. You think the public doesn’t know we’re ripping them off?
That was the second thing my sister told me. It was fun, but it was
EXPENSIVE! Are there any bargains left in America? Any deals?
Any fair exchanges? Every time you go to an event you get ripped off.
Sports. Entertainment. The movies. People are sick of it.
But you never get sick of ribs.
That was the allure.
We didn’t have barbecue growing up. Not THIS kind of barbecue. SOUTHERN
barbecue. With meat roasted for hours in a pit. The closest we came to ribs was
what was served as an appetizer at chinese restaurants. But those whetted
our appetites. For the real thing.
Not that I was convinced you could get the real thing here at Ribfest.
Because the whole thing was so CHEESY! With booths flashing banners of events
they’d won that you’d never heard of. Sporting trophies that looked like they’d
been barbecued themselves.
But you’ve got to get into the spirit, you’ve got to give it a try.
I felt we had to go to the booths with lines. That somebody knew something.
Turns out this was TOTALLY wrong. People are sheep. They follow the crowd
to mediocrity. Whereas the vendors with nobody waiting served the best food.
We got samplers. Three ribs for five tickets. Which works out to $8.33.
Not a deal. And not enough food to satisfy either. With each of us taking one
But after a few joints, our hunger was satiated, we could start playing the
connoisseurs we believe ourselves to be.
Oh, the Pigfoot ribs were thoroughly cooked. And their sauces were heavenly,
ranging from mild to hot. AMERICAN hot. Which we all know is wimpy.
Because Americans love their food bland.
But then we discovered North Carolina BBQ. With meat that tasted like it had
been cooking for a week. Flaky dry instead of moist. With a hot sauce with
pepper seeds that was out of this world. I was down with this. But Wendy
preferred the ribs of Good Ole Boys, which if you go for the pink stuff, the
slowly roasted but cooked today style, were truly the best.
And having sampled the wares of so many outlets, we took a break. Laid in
the shade of the one extant tree. Escaping the Minnesota heat. Which is barely
bearable at five p.m.
But then, fully rested, we strode over to the Howling Coyote emporium. For
some pulled pork.
Enduring a line, since the place had filled up, I decided to sample the
sauces. I sauntered over to the giant tubs with fountain dispensers
and found them labeled "Mild", "Pyro" and "Super Pyro".
What a laugh.
But just to be sure, I started with the Pyro. There’s just something about
that word that put me on guard, that warned me.
I licked my finger and the world started to spin. I had an urge for water
but I knew that this was no help, it would only fuel the fire. My tongue, my
lips, they were scorched. And the fire was still burning. And when it faded, I
made the mistake of licking the remaining remnants from my index finger.
This is where I went wrong. It’s hours later and my lips STILL tingle. I
thought I’d have to go to the emergency room. I saw no relief. Was I the only
one on this trip? Did they have a mobile burn unit, ready to deal with hot
When the pulled pork sandwich arrived I wouldn’t let Fred put ANY sauce on
it, not even mild. I was working on some mental theory that the meat and the
bun would dilute the effect, but this was fallacious. My lips still burned. My
tongue too. When they finally started to merely tingle fifteen minutes later
I was so relieved I swore off sauce FOREVER! Once burned, FOREVER shy.
I was done. Finished. History.
But before we exited, I had to make one final trip. To the loo.
I strode over to the porta-potty, lowered my pants, whipped out my member,
did my business, shook my unit a few times for good measure and then reinserted
it into my jeans.
Business done I felt relaxed. I hiked over to the NASCAR exhibit for a peek
at the hot rods. But when I started walking back to the concourse, to meet
with Wendy and Fred, to get our shit together and go, I started enduring a
strange sensation, a BURNING sensation.
It flummoxed me. Was there something in the lemonade? Something that had
entered my urinary tract that was causing such discomfort?
And then, as my sword started smoldering, as it felt like it was being rubbed
in hot coals, needles inserted all the while, I finally added it up. The
Pyro sauce, from Howling Coyote, it had been transferred like a virus, from my
hand to my DICK!!
The pain wasn’t fading. Was the skin here that much more sensitive? Where
the sun never shined?
I’m running the mental scenarios as it feels like flames are raging inside my
pants. If I thought water would have worked I would have run into the
Mississippi. Maybe someone’s got some hand lotion. Can ANYBODY help me?
Can I TELL anybody?
Finally I ran into Fred.
And as I told him my dilemma, my story, my amped-up conundrum, I sank to my
knees, I rolled onto my back, I spread my legs, to make sure my penis touched
not a whit of clothing. I told him I couldn’t move, I just had to lie there.
He chuckled. He couldn’t help himself.
But it was no laughing matter.
Ten minutes. Twenty minutes. Was this pain EVER going to subside?
I didn’t move for half an hour. Panicked, just PRAYING that nature would have an antidote, that this searing pain would run its course and I’d be free.
I’m free now, but it’s hours later and I haven’t let my hand touch my dick since, even though I’ve washed it vigorously a number of times.
So let this be a warning. Pee BEFORE you go to Ribfest. And don’t go again
until you’ve come home and SHOWERED!
[Above Right – Wendy and me with the Ribfest mascot.]