Sunday, September 13, 2009

Clam Chowder and Precious People

Yesterday, we participated in the local Clam Chowder cook off event for support the troops at Bend Villa Court. It was a very interesting experience for me as I watched the various restaurants vie for the Clam Chowder title. Last years proud winner brought his trophy with him to show us all who the defending champion was. He also was vocal in his anger that the radio station had mentioned that they thought last years winner was us. He accused Jim of paying the radio station for that comment.

I went to the event to support Jim primarily. After all, he was doing this all on his own and other than the cost of material, I did not have allot invested in it. Competition is always a funny thing in that it brings out things in people. I remember someone saying that I should be trying to get people to go just to vote for us. I said, 'No, if we win, we win.". There was not allot of interaction going on between contestants except for one young girl from one of the restaurants who seemed to be there not because of her culinary skills but because of other assets that she had. Another of the Chefs there assisted her in her set up and she just served and smiled.

Local celebrities voted along with people who came and paid to sample the various fare that was laid out and then was give one vote to put on their favorite. Jimmy was the only one there who brought two types of Chowder, Manhattan and New England. This came to be our bane, however, in that we ended up competing against ourselves. I believe this might have been the thing that kept us from the people's award. I believe our votes combined would have out shadowed the winner and from my assessment of the ticket cups, we were very close to being second and third in the running. I think Jim will rethink this one next year even though many people seemed smitten by his Manhattan. We are considering putting that same Manhattan on the menu from time to time, however because of it's high praises.

Through all of the competition, there was a vision before the event even started that hit me the most. And it did not have anything at all to do with the conversation, but a whole lot to do with friendship. Two dear sweet ladies who obviously lived there, were in conversation in front of us and that conversation was so incredibly sweet that Judy just had to capture it in picture form. I am affected by this picture every time that I look at it. We must get it blown up and reprinted to give to both of this sweet ladies.

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