Just Where Is Steve?? - Put the Kettle on.... Blog at Allrecipes.com - 264040

Put the Kettle on....

Just Where is Steve?? 
Jan. 14, 2012 4:43 am 
Updated: Jan. 26, 2012 1:18 am
About a month ago Steve graduated from college earning a degree in Criminal Justice.  He's my adventurous kid - he likes to have fun.  I think he has had all the "fun" he can take these past couple days.  For some background: I have a sister and brother-in-law in South Dakota (we live in Ohio) and Steve loves it out there. It's been his dream to move out there and live in the "wild west".   Several weeks ago my dear sister called Steve and informed him an opening had been posted with their police department.  He was on his computer and applying almost before he said goodbye to his aunt.  A day later he receives an e-mail he was qualified to take their test, etc., etc.  So, plans started being made for him to go visit Aunt Debbie and Uncle Brian. 

Airline tickets were outrageous!  We have no idea how long this process could take before he either is offered a job or told to go home so a round-trip ticket was going to be too difficult to purchase.  He was going to just drive but I didn't want him driving, alone, all that way in the winter.  Weather can be too unpredictable.  Oh, you have no idea how unpredictable the weather can be!  Then, the bright idea - Go Greyhound! A one-way bus ticket is cheap!  Ha!  Let me just say that I don't think anyone in my family will be going Greyhound anytime soon - except for Steve.  He still has to get to South Dakota....  Though I promise you he will not return to Ohio via bus.

Hubby and I take the day off work to take Steve to the bus station.  Scheduled time to leave: 12:25 pm.  Instructions are to arrive one hour prior to boarding.  At 12:40 he's starting to get antsy - he is supposed to go from Akron to Chicago and switch busses there.  If he's late getting started, what happens to the transfer??  Finally at 12:48 a bus pulls in and they announce it's time to leave, but there's been a slight change in schedule - they're going to head to Columbus first and switch busses from there to get to Chicago.  We should have grabbed Steve by the coat collar right then and there and just started driving ourselves...   Or, like he said - he could have started walking and been there by now.

Steve's adventure has now begun.....

All Thursday afternoon and into the evening we receive witty text messages about various stops and passengers getting on the bus - Steve is on an adventure.  One of the last things that both his Grandpa and his mom (me) told him was "Don't become friends with people and tell them your whole life story - they're strangers and need to stay that way".     By late evening we start getting the texts saying that they were running really late and he'd never catch that bus in Chicago. Then he gets to Chicago and all busses are delayed/cancelled.  Nobody could seem to tell him how long of a wait it would be or what he should do.  When we got the text at 2:00 am from him that said now they knew they'd be going nowhere until at least 6:30 am because of the horrible weather I couldn't help it - I burst out crying.  My baby was alone in a strange place (strange in more ways than just unfamiliar) at 2 am!  By this time it was too late to try and make arrangements to find a place to sleep - so a night spent at a Chicago bus station it was.  I would have been terrified.  Heck, I was terrified and I was home in my own house. To Steve it was still an adventure.   Finally at 8:30 am on Friday he is boarding a bus and continuing on this journey.  Original arrival time was 5:30 pm Friday.  Ha!  Greyhounds can't tell time.

All day Friday we get more witty, humorous Steve-Style text messages.  Even when he gets to Minneapolis and gets stuck at that station for hours on end.  That's when we got the message "Sorry - I'm talking to people and making friends now!"   Then we get the message - "hmmm... hope I got on the right bus - we're headed to North Dakota."   He arrived in Fargo, ND late last night. By now he's made friends with some guys from a gas company and they're ordering pizza to be delivered to the station. At least I think that's what they were doing.  The texts have become sort of vague.  That doesn't worry me - that's also typical Steve-Style.  He said the station only has vending machines filled with candy bars and chips and cokes to drink.  Steve doesn't eat or drink any of that stuff. Not if he can help it.  He wanted to go across the street to a bar for a burger and a beer but they were told they couldn't leave the station.  If they did and they had a drink they would not be allowed to board the bus. Zero tolerance for alcohol.  If he had known then what he knows now - he could have gone out to that bar and had a dozen drinks and sobered up long before it was time to board the bus!!   Heck, if we had known then what we know now - I would have come up with the additional several hundred dollars a plane ticket would have cost and he would have been sitting with my sister and brother-in-law having a beer by their fire playing with their 2 new puppies!  Hindsight is always 20/20.  But - that was not the way it was.  It still seemed like an adventure.  Sort of.  Then he found out he'd be spending the night in Fargo, ND.  I got the text "This is not an adventure anymore!". 

As I'm sitting here writing this my phone goes off, alerting me to a text message.  It's Steve.  It is 6:20 am and he's been told the bus will leave at 8:00 am.  He also says the roads look way worse than they did in Chicago.  Let's hope these bus drivers in Fargo drive in inclement weather.  As of right now he should be arriving in Rapid City 24 hours later than scheduled.  At least his test is not until Monday morning. 

I'm going to admit I've spent the past 36 hours or so with a knot in my stomach and my nerves rattled. Not that I'm worried about Steve. Steve isn't the type you need to worry about, but in this instance I can't help it. This is the first time in my life I felt totally out of control of a situation.   I didn't sleep Thursday night. The thought of my son alone, in Chicago, in a bus station of all places was too much for me. We're "country folks".  We don't even have a traffic light in our township! Last night, though, I did manage to sleep. I knew he was in Fargo, ND. I've never been there, but it sounds to me like it would be a safer place than Chicago. Don't tell me differently, please.

In closing I have to say that this will be a journey he'll never forget.  When the interviewer asks him why he thinks he's the one for this position, he needs to tell them what all he went through to get there.  I think it's obvious he really wants this job!  After this fiasco I have to say I will not be recommending bus travel to anyone, regardless of the value.  Though, it's true - Steve has certainly gotten to see a lot of the country on that $180!!  
Jan. 14, 2012 5:00 am
Oh My Goodness! I'd be exhausted after all of that! Good luck to your son!
Jan. 14, 2012 5:04 am
Oh dear!!!!!!! I understand how you feel as one Mom to another! I wish I'd known about Steve's travels before they became travails. We had a similiar situation here at this household not too long ago. Greyhound is not the way travel for sure! I think you are right, Steve needs to share his adventures of getting there for that interview! Will be praying the boy makes it to his destination safely and gets the job!
Jan. 14, 2012 5:05 am
Thanks. Last text I received was: "Oh well. There's a box sitting here with a 'fragile, this side up' sticker on it that's smashed and upside down". My son still sees the humor...
Jan. 14, 2012 5:06 am
Cat - thanks! If this had been my daughter I would have already left to go get her. Probably would have followed the bus to Columbus to bring her back home. Well, that's if she would have even gotten on the bus in Akron.. LOL. She would not have found any humor in any part of this situation. Though, hearing about it in regards to her brother she is chuckling...
Jan. 14, 2012 5:13 am
Mother Ann, I know you were worried sick. And he must have been also. Waiting that long and the delays. Whew! I sure hope he gets the job :)
Jan. 14, 2012 5:35 am
Oh my goodness! So hard for us parents when our kids spread their wings - WE are the ones who have the growing pains! Dare I ask just how is Steve getting home? I hope he gets the job!
Jan. 14, 2012 5:53 am
Oh my...you must be beside yourself with worry. But if your son is anything like my sons, he'll tell you it was a learning experience and maybe to some extent enjoyed the new people he met along the way. I hope he gets there safe and sound. I never knew buses could change and take you other than your destination...that is really something good to know.
Jan. 14, 2012 5:54 am
luv2cook - Most of my "worry" is due to the fact that I'm the one that thought of this mode of travel. Maybe guilt is more like it. He just sent me a text and said this has been sort of like the mom in that movie Home Alone, but worse...
Jan. 14, 2012 5:57 am
WFDM, I just want him to get there! LOL Seriously - I'm pretty sure he'll be flying home. We just have no idea when exactly. I know he'll stay at least a week. If he makes it thru the first part of the interview process it could be much longer. Luckily my sister is letting him stay with her so there is no cost once he gets there. If he gets the job he may not come home at all and we'll drive his truck out with all his stuff and then fly home. If that happens I'm sure he'll suggest we Go Greyhound, for the experience and all...
Jan. 14, 2012 5:59 am
Sherri - my son is not one to worry. He's always looking for an adventure. There have been times his messages have had an "I'm sick of this already" tone but for the most part he's been his normal, funny self. Just got a text message that he's on a bus, leaving Fargo and headed for Sioux Falls - where he should have been yesterday around lunchtime. We had no idea they could drive you all around the country either.... He sure got his money's worth out of this ticket!!
Jan. 14, 2012 6:23 am
I have to LOL! Back in '89, I boarded a Greyhound bus here in Washington and headed for New York...WHEW! That's all I can say about that!!
Jan. 14, 2012 6:33 am
WW - I'll bet that trip has some stories to tell! I rode a Greyhound bus once, when I was 12. My sister and I rode from Ohio to Louisville, KY and our trip was very uneventful. I'm just glad he's back on the road again and moving to the end of this fiasco. At least I hope it's about over for him!
Jan. 14, 2012 7:11 am
After reading this adventure, I was saying to myself, "Ah, the wonder and magic of text messaging - - how did we survive all these years without it?" I'm glad it exists now! The instant peace of mind (albeit temporarily) it gives to a fretting mother is priceless!! - - Don't worry Mother Ann - - you've raised him right and now he is must spread his wings and fly . . .er . . hmmmm . . . ride to infinity and beyond!!!! - - He'll get there and after 3 days of holding your breath, it will be good to inhale a breathe of fresh air - - oxygen does the body good! LOL!
Jan. 14, 2012 7:15 am
Mother Ann, I hope your son gets there safely. I can't believe how many delays your son has endured. My son went to Mexico when he was in college and I worried the whole time. Heck, I worry about him when he travels to see his fiancee- just 200 miles from Pueblo West to Denver.
Jan. 14, 2012 7:18 am
luv2cook - I laughed out loud at your "to infinity and beyond" comment! He loved Buzz Lightyear as a kid. I'm gonna text that to him right now... Yes, I love texting. I can't even imagine if he were on that bus and I had no way of knowing where he was or what was going on.
Jan. 14, 2012 7:19 am
Lela - I think it's our job as mothers to worry. What would we do if we weren't worrying?? LOL
Jan. 14, 2012 7:32 am
Mother Ann, who am I to tell you not to worry? I'm a mother too and acknowledge your mothers heart. I just promise you that I'm praying God will be with Steve in his "real world" travels and you will be granted peace of mind. A Mother's Love NEVER Ends!
Jan. 14, 2012 7:56 am
It doesn't matter how old they get or that they have a degree under their belt, we still worry sick about them. He has to get the job now!!! and will always have this story to tell about how he got it.
Jan. 14, 2012 8:14 am
I'm feeling better already! He's on a bus, and should be at my sister's by dinnertime! Just talked to her and she said he's making him something good. He probably is wanting a shower about now, too!
Jan. 14, 2012 9:11 am
Mother Ann - I have to say, the wonders of texting and cell phones is really neat. I once got stranded at London's Heathrow airport....I was 18, had little money on me and at the time I should have been landing in Los Angeles I was still sitting in the airport in England. I had no way to contact my sister to tell her not to drive to LA to pick me up! Fortunately the airline fed us 3 meals a day while we waited. We finally took off and then were told we would have to land in New York. More waiting there. I finally arrived in Los Angeles four days late & my darling sister and brother in law were there to meet me. :) It was an adventure I will never forget.
Jan. 14, 2012 9:24 am
I think Steve wants a six pack first! What an adventure! Praying that he gets there and that the trip is all worth it. Heck..at least it's a story of a lifetime.
Jan. 14, 2012 9:48 am
BN: What a story you have! You're very lucky the airline fed you. The bus station wouldn't even let them leave to go across the street to get a burger - it was chips from the vending machine or starve!
Jan. 14, 2012 9:50 am
Anissa - I know my son - he'll want real food first, then a shower, then maybe that 6-pack! But then again, he may pass on the 6-pack since he has to pass the physical fitness test and all for the job interview. I just hope he can get all the "kinks" worked out of his body from sitting for so long before Monday morning. I guess he's young - he'll be fine. If it were me - it would take a week to recover!
Jan. 14, 2012 9:52 am
Aww MA, I know its driven you mad with worry but don't plague yourself with blame too. Sheesh, this is one of those stories that your grandkids from Steve will ask you to tell again and again. Good for Steve! Embrace his adventurous attitude and pray that he's able to hang onto it as long as he can. People who work in the criminal justice system seem to lose their mirth all too soon. And dont blame yourself, you made a good decision with bad information. The government does it all the time.
Jan. 14, 2012 9:56 am
Note to self - if ever traveling by bus bring FOOD!
Jan. 14, 2012 10:02 am
Thanks Raedwulf! Made me feel better already, at least until my actions could be compared to that of the govt.! Yikes! LOL @BN: I seem to recall I mentioned to my son that maybe he should let me pack him a little "care package" to take with him. He didn't want to be bothered with it, though thankfully he did stick a few waters in his backpack.
Jan. 14, 2012 2:30 pm
I truely think I spend more time in worry over my kids now they are adults than I ever did when they were small. I think you should send Greyhound a letter comparing their schedule with reality and see if they offer any apologies -- just don't accept any free tickets unless you can use them in the summer! GL to Steve on his job interview.
Jan. 14, 2012 4:51 pm
MA... You know I love that Steve of your's... ! That story will resognate throughout his life.. looks like adventure is his calling! You my dear... just get used to it... if you can! Share with him that a lot of us are very proud and supportive of his job choice!
Jan. 14, 2012 6:59 pm
BSM: I think you may have a good idea. I don't think I'd accept free tickets even for summer use. What was supposed to be a 27 hour trip was in reality a 56 hour journey. The actual itinerary did not resemble the one he was supposed to follow at all, other than the beginning and end. He did arrive safely, though, and I do realize that Mother Nature played a big part in the delays, but he went to ND and had to spend 2 nights in bus stations. One of the overnighters I now have found out that the station wanted to close at 9:30 and kick him out into the unknown(the bus was going to be leaving at 1 am so paying for a hotel would have been sort of a waste). He refused to leave, telling them they could lock up and leave but he wasn't going anywhere. Turns out when he said that the other riders got behind them and they were allowed to stay. Crazy. He sounded happy and relieved to have finally arrived at my sister's house. She was grilling his favorite cut of steak and making some sort of fancy orange potato side dish with roasted veggies. He said he was going to eat, then shower and change his underwear. LOL
Jan. 14, 2012 7:02 pm
Terry, I got used to Steve and his adventures when he was about 4 and ran off ahead of us in a hotel, getting on an elevator and disappearing. He rode that elevator up and down 9 floors with hubby right behind trying to catch up to him. When the elevator door opened and there stood my little boy all by himself, was he crying? Nope! He said "Uh oh! That was cool!" Thank you for your words of encouragement!
Jan. 14, 2012 7:20 pm
Poor baby, what an awful, exhausting experience. Glad he arrive in one piece! Is he interviewing with the Rapid City police? Is that Pennington Co.?
Jan. 14, 2012 7:22 pm
It is the Rapid City Police. I have no idea what county it is in. Now he has all day tomorrow to rest up and get prepared for the test, etc.
Jan. 14, 2012 7:29 pm
Small world, my step-daughter is a dispatcher for the Rapid City police!
Jan. 14, 2012 7:30 pm
The buses haven't changed since 1964- the last time I rode one. From Yuba City in CA to Sacramento (about 50 miles) they took 4 1/2 hours. I have heard these stories many times since then and they seem content in their role to be the most memorable disservice they can possibly be. ... He'll get there, not to worry!
Jan. 14, 2012 7:32 pm
Wyattdogster - what a small world! If you talk to your step-daughter before Monday, tell her that Steve from Ohio is definitelyd the man for the job!! LOL
Jan. 14, 2012 7:34 pm
The buses haven't changed since 1964- the last time I rode one. From Yuba City in CA to Sacramento (about 50 miles) they took 4 1/2 hours. I have heard these stories many times since then and they seem content in their role to be the most memorable disservice they can possibly be. ... Happy for you that he made his destination, Mother Ann! Those buses are ornery and cantankerous but you will make your destination- sometime.
Jan. 14, 2012 7:35 pm
Mike - He did get there - it only took 57 hours! He will NOT be riding a bus home, that is for darn sure. He had quite an adventure but is glad that is over. Now he can concentrate on doing his best to get this job on Monday!
Jan. 14, 2012 7:36 pm
Mike - He met some very interesting people that's for sure!
Jan. 14, 2012 8:33 pm
I'll send her an email tonight!
Jan. 14, 2012 8:43 pm
Jan. 14, 2012 9:00 pm
MA - I sooo know you were feeling. My 21 yo left for Australia at Christmas by himself. He had emergency landings twice in the states - and then worried about catching the next flight. It was a 14 hour flight leaving the states and was going to mess up 2 days worth of traveling if he missed the LAX flight. He too thought it was a great adventure, (he did make his flights). Another emergency landing on the flight home - he said it was just another pit stop on this journey he calls life. So glad Steve made it and hope his interview goes well!
Jan. 15, 2012 4:40 am
WD: Thanks! :) And, question for you - have you started looking for a new puppy yet?
Jan. 15, 2012 4:43 am
Molly - That had to be sooo nervewracking! Australia is a much longer trip. Your son has the right attitude - glad he made it back safely.
Jan. 15, 2012 5:53 am
Oh thank heavens! I woke up wondering how Steve was. I'm glad he made safely! Now on to the job interview!
Jan. 15, 2012 6:46 am
Well glad he made it safe and sound...and nuttin's better than clean underwear...LOL.
Jan. 15, 2012 7:45 am
Hi Ann, I have been looking at this litter of rescue pups online, taking Colleen (DD) to see them in just a few minutes. Bluetick coonhound mix. Wyatt was part bluetick, the pictures look just like he did as a pup! Going to go spend some time with them to see if it's a good fit. Boy or girl...hmmm
Jan. 15, 2012 8:03 am
Hi there Mother Ann, you have raised a great guy and he has a zest for life and adventure. Embrace that quality about him. So many people really are too timid and have no self confidence in themselves to take that leap of faith and just go and experience all kinds of things. There was a reason he went by bus. It's for future reference of the kinds of people that have to endure travel under less than perfect circumstances and how they may "snap". I have no doubt that he will get this job. And frankly, I'm surprised that no one has mentioned it yet, but....clearly, you haven't seen the movie Fargo have you? Rent it...but wait til he's settled. :D
Jan. 15, 2012 8:13 am
WD: Good luck on the "puppy visit"! How about one of each??!!
Jan. 15, 2012 8:15 am
Avon, I have not seen Fargo... but I have seen small bits and pieces - I'll have to rent it... ;)
Jan. 15, 2012 11:41 am
"Don;t become friends with strangers and tell them your life story, they are strangers and need to stay that way".....I am so glad you did not listen to that advice, this stranger really enjoyed reading your "life" story, and I really do feel like I know you and you are my friend. Just ribbin' ya a bit! Let us know how Steve makes out with the test and job opening.
Jan. 15, 2012 2:41 pm
YEAH!!!!!! . . . Steve has reached "infinity and beyond"!!!!!! . . . Now on to the interview and testing . . . GO BUZZ!!!!!
Call Me Alice 
Jan. 15, 2012 3:10 pm
Next time, if you're set against him driving, taking a train most of the way, then a bus for the remainder, may work better. I wish him luck!
Jan. 15, 2012 4:46 pm
I'm cheering for him - for the job interview (he should get it after all this), and for his finishing the endurance race in style!
Jan. 16, 2012 4:58 am
covergirl - haha! :) I'll keep ya posted on the "rest of the story..."
Jan. 16, 2012 11:42 am
Wait a second - I live in Fargo. The roads here have been great. We haven't had snow all winter. When did this happen? P.S He should have gone to get something to eat. I work across from the bus depot. J&L beers just two blocks from him has great food.
Jan. 16, 2012 11:58 am
jsknigh - he was stuck in Fargo, not because of the weather but because of the bus schedules heading to Rapid City. He was there on Friday night/early Saturday morning. He wanted to go get a burger, sounds like must have been where you work, but the bus people wouldn't let anyone leave. They didn't know exactly when the bus would be arriving and they also didn't want them going out and drinking - zero tolerance for alcohol on the bus apparently. In fact they kicked a young man off the bus because he had been drinking before he boarded.
Jan. 16, 2012 1:22 pm
Hi MA. Back in the 70's my grandma lived in LA and took the bus from there to Boston, where my Dad would pick her up (we lived in Maine). She hated flying. She loved riding the bus. I can't imagine riding the bus across country. Good luck to your son!!
Jan. 17, 2012 7:04 am
Wow! What a journey. Can you say Epic Bus Trip? Hope like helk he gets the job. Our youngest son, 18, decided after HS graduation to head off to Florida (he has a friend there) Left our driveway at 6:00 p.m. Iowa time and arrived in Florida at 7:00 p.m. the next night! Ugh, he slept in his car for two hours--completly what I told him NOT to do. He drove back to Iowa few weeks later for his sister's wedding and then back on down to Florida (stopped at hotels at least to sleep). But wow, letting them go off and begin to live their grown up lives is sooo hard!
Jan. 17, 2012 10:23 am
Mother Ann, I hope Steve makes there o.k.! Planes,Trains and Automobiles keeps playing in my head!!!! What an adventure though! Hope all is well and can't wait to here how it turns out. Best of luck to Steve!
Jan. 17, 2012 1:03 pm
whoa! as a mother, i can imagine how you feel. on the other hand, think of it as "character building"!
Jan. 17, 2012 1:53 pm
Jena - Steve wanted to drive out there and I absolutely refused. I knew he would do exactly what your son did and the winter weather is just too unpredictable. If it were summer I'd probably let him drive, even knowing he would just pull over in a rest area to sleep a few hrs.
Jan. 17, 2012 1:55 pm
dragonfly - he made it there. I'm so glad he is my adventurous one - now he can chuckle about his adventures. He did not make the cut this time, but the sgt. told him to come back next month and try again. My sister and BIL are very kindly letting him stay with them so he can do just that. They swear they're happy to have him. I'm going to be missing him real soon, but this is what he wants.
Jan. 17, 2012 1:56 pm
weeble - Part of me is a little jealous - Steve gets to go on all the adventures!! LOL :)
Jan. 17, 2012 3:48 pm
Sorry he didn't make the cut this time but he sounds like a real "go getter", staying there and trying again. Looks like you've raised a good one! We need more of those kids these days.
Jan. 18, 2012 8:56 am
This is making me sit on the edge of my seat! So what happened? Did Steve get the job? That's what I hate about blogs, where is the rest of the story? I go on All recipes for a specific menu and end up lost in more drama.......so what happened Mom Anne? from Ontario, Canada
Jan. 19, 2012 3:20 am
Hi juanitapart2 - well, things didn't go as hoped in SD for Steve. He passed the written exam with flying colors (that was going to be the tough part for him). Then, when it came to the physical test, he didn't do as many sit-ups as required in a minute's time! If you knew my son, you would no believe this and you would know how devastated he was over that! But, my son also is a very upbeat, positive kind of guy so by the next afternoon he was already planning his next step. The sgt. with the dept. encouraged him to re-apply for next month's testing and that is what he has done. In the meantime he is working out even harder and may try to find a part-time job so he can earn at least a little money in the following month. My sister is allowing him to stay with them - heck she practically was begging me to say he could stay. :) I'm missing him already, but know he's doing what he wants to do.
Jan. 20, 2012 11:28 am
I"ve got to know - did he get the job?
Jan. 21, 2012 3:16 am
happytalk, not yet. But he is very persistent - never has liked to accept No for an answer. :)
Jan. 21, 2012 2:19 pm
Keep us posted, Mother Ann!
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Mother Ann

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Streetsboro, Ohio, USA
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About Me
I've been married for 33 years, and live in Ohio. We have a daughter who is married and lives nearby. Our son graduated from college and moved to South Dakota. He has his own place but still goes to visit my sister and brother-in-law and have dinner with them occasionally. We have two black labs that get to go duck hunting with dad and two cats. We own a Mexican restaurant and are learning alot about the food industry. I love to eat, go camping, read, spend time with family and friends, watch movies, and drink wine; not necessarily in that order.
My favorite things to cook
I love to bake - anything chocolate is fine with me. Seafood, chicken dishes and slow-cooker fare.
My favorite family cooking traditions
My husband and I enjoy cooking together with wine. We pop open a bottle of wine and get cooking. :-)
My cooking triumphs
Whenever I can put together a meal that gets many compliments and leaves the diners satisfied is a triumph in my book! I love to cook meals for family and friends.
My cooking tragedies
When I was first married we had my grandparent's-in-law over for a pot roast dinner. The meat came out great, but the potatoes and carrots were still half raw. My husband's grandfather went to cut his fork into a carrot and it flew off his plate. He looked at me, winked, and said he loved his carrots that way!
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