Monday, August 10, 2009

Sweet Corn Stardom

Do you know what Saturday was? It was the epitome of summer in small town Iowa...Sweet Corn Festival. It's held in a town neighboring ours and it's our tradition to go every year, watch the parade, then sit on the curb around the square and gorge ourselves on FREE locally grown, Iowa sweet corn. It's a grand time. For those of you not from these parts and that may have never experienced farm grown Iowa sweet corn, I'm sorry. Please add that to your bucket list immediately. You'll thank me.

Saturday was the big day or as GI Joe's brofriend John, ( calls it..."his favorite holiday." This is no small affair people. SEVEN TONS of sweet corn are shucked by volunteers the night before who work strictly for the free beer (nothing motivates like beer right?), and then the following day people line up for blocks to get their share starting at 11am, when the corn starts rolling off the trucks on conveyor belts, run thru boiling water and then served up hot and fresh to the hungry crowd. But before I tell you about that, I have to tell you about the parade.

If you've ever been to a small town parade you know that anyone representing anything can be in it, you don't even have to have an actual float. There's no registration process, you just show up at the start place, line up, and go. As long as you are throwing candy you'll be waved at and accepted by the people. In the Sweet Corn parade there were people on horseback, a few actual, honest to goodness floats, people on lawn tractors and four wheelers, and then the really boring ones like our church's who just had GI Joe and John in the church van throwing out candy. Next year we're going to kick things up a notch. For starters, I think there's going to be a Koons Zoo/Hillbilly Hilarity float. Picture with me if you will, a float all decked out in pink (obviously) with me sitting on a hay bale in the center wearing a tiara (duh), surrounded by emus, a peacock and some pigs perhaps, with the kids riding behind the float on horseback. And then my Marketing team (yes, I have a Marketing team you know who you are) will be wearing pink shirts that say "Hooked on Hillbilly Hilarity" (thanks Trisha for the catchy slogan, you know I'm a sucker for alliteration) and handing out something unforgettable with my blog URL on it. What do you think? Too over the top for just this teeny, tiny, little, old blog? Definitely, but that's what makes it awesome. New readers would be nice, the more the merrier, but it's not like I'm going to quit my day job to become a professional blogger, so the real reason for such marketing tactics is pure and simple...more blog material!!! Can you imagine the blog post about the blog float? It's shaping up to be my most anticipated holiday of 2010.

Speaking of new floats, while GI Joe and John were working the parade route from the church van, they came up with an idea for the church float for next year's parade that would certainly catch people's attention. They are going to put up a sign on the van that says "Go HERE (arrow towards the church name on the van) or GO HERE (arrow pointing to the float being pulled behind). And on the float would be Hell. Yes that's right..hell. They envision all kinds of pyrotechnics, a devil poking at people with a pitchfork, people crying and screaming, you know real warm fuzzy stuff. Then as if that wouldn't be a prize winner alone, they would hand out Codemnmints (get it?) and instead of the Mardi Gra beads that are typical parade fare, they would throw out pendants...REPENDANTS. (Insert eye roll here.) This is what happens when they are given sugar, corn, and too much time together in one day. And to think they are deacons at our church. Help us all.

After the enjoyable, yet mundane parade (at least for one more year), we beat the crowd and got our sweet corn right away. We buttered, salted, and found a shaded courtyard tucked away from the rest of the madness. When you get your corn you tell them how many ears you want and they give it to you, barely batting an eye if you happen to say 4 or 5 or 9. Yes, 9. And this my friends, is why John calls it his favorite holiday and takes the Monday after off to recover.

In his prime, John put away 14 ears of Sweet Corn fest sweet corn in one sitting. This year either due to his advancing age or the amount of candy he and GI Joe consumed while IN the parade, he maxed out at 9 ears. Better luck next year John. Maybe you should train a little harder next year or maybe dodging the rocks and tomatoes people will be throwing at you while pulling the Hell Float will cause you to work up more of an appetite so you can get back up to your peak performance. You're a legend round these parts.

And to those of you think of Iowa as nothing but hillbillies and corn, I don't think I'm in any position to disagree.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Holly! I still catch up with your blog. Sweet corn, tomatoes and cucumbers! Nothing better in the summer!! I know you well enough to know that the Koons Zoo will be in the parade next year. Did you ever get your cow? Summer is going quickly!!!