7 Things (You May Be Glad) You Don't Know About Me...

...And Food in Knoxville: My Self-Centered Variation on a Facebook Game

So, a few weeks ago there was a charming game, enterprise, time-passer—what have you—making the rounds on Facebook. People would give each other a number and the recipient would then have to publish that number of revelations that other readers might not know about them previously.

Except for the folks who gave two-word answers (you know who you are, Scott Ethridge), belligerently taunted others for daring to share mediocre personal drivel on the authoritative and serious Facebook platform (erm, Matt Miller), or, since they already posed as their cat on the authoritative and serious Facebook platform, continued the ruse by having the cat share mediocre personal drivel (that'd be you, "Lucy Whittle"), it was lots of fun.

Now, rebelliously forming my own rules, I would like to create a derivative time-passer whereby we all share things people might not know about us in regards to Knoxville and food. I will go first, choosing my own number, seven, nice and Biblical and Samurai-ish. And I'll make a rule to be upbeat and, you know, not mention things like Shuck and Cru Bistro exec chef Anthony Fowler departing our shores for, harrumph, some New Orleans country club. Or TD Barbecue on Middlebrook unceremoniously closing its doors at that location and leaving no forwarding address.

Seven off the top, here we go:

1. The only pumpkin pie I ate this year came from McDonald's, and I ate it exclusively at breakfast.

2. Even on days when I have absolutely no intention of stopping in for her aggressively delicious mac 'n' cheese or perhaps the happy hour that runs until the first person has to pee, I read Lisa Smith's Big Fatty's Facebook page. Kind of a food-liquor rap from a chef with a sailor's vocabulary. Really, trying to describe it, words fail me, but they never fail her. Here's a sample: "meatloaf for the under achievers and the non believers erbody gotta eat! 2198317 tryn to be smarter than i really am...and i ain't fooln nobody! if i had me a ball i'd bounce it! ‘wtf does that mean?' just bein silly...lighten up already!"

3. I adore the plastic Ball jar caps and the stores that sell them, most notably Ace Hardware and sometimes Walmart. That way, when I finish pickling out-of-season cauliflower with a pre-made mix, I can still use all the jars I obsessively purchased—Emery's 5 & 10 in South Knox still has some shapely pint jars I'm after—to store my Cheerios.

4. Bologna, bleck. (That's for you Scott Ethridge.)

4b. Even with all the places now serving the fried bologna sandwich and society reporter Gay Lyons serving bologna sandwiches at some posh event, I don't like bologna, Sam I Am. Not even smoked from Dead End BBQ.

5. I heart rye bread. The best restaurant rye bread for the money comes lightly grilled at Pete's Cafe and, yep, Arby's, where it cradles Market Fresh Reubens (which I order maybe twice a year, without the sauce, just the kraut).

6. I, the one prone to belligerently taunting Knoxville for its scanty fresh seafood offerings, have discovered this absolutely delicious Tostadas Del Ray at the Pelanchos in Seymour. It has lime and shrimp and this delicate white sauce and is fresh, fresh, fresh. I also discovered that they serve this avocado stuffed with shrimp thing that I thought I might have to return to Conway, Ark. for, so yay.

7. Though I enjoy his posts about bourbon-marinated salmon sandwiches (at the Atlanta airport) and lavish dipped chocolates and such, the only Anthony Fowler Facebook update I've attempted to make myself is his PB&J "Club." To quote the disloyal deserter himself, it is comprised of "Three pieces of toasted whole wheat bread slices, creamy peanut butter, strawberry jam and two layers of Cheetos. Sweet, salty and crunch." And, wanting to be authentic, I asked him how he got the Cheetos to be nice, even rounds on the cut sides of the sandwich and learned he used.... his best sushi knife!

Whoops, maybe that last should go on Fowler's list of secrets, not my own? Nah, I'm going to allow it. But it does make me wonder: How does the cat Lucy Whittle feel about Cheetos sandwiches?

7b.: In order to revive my Metro Pulse food blog, Fearless Foodie, I would really like readers to contribute their own lists to this enterprise. I will be happy to give anyone else who wants their own number if they'll hit me up at roserk33@gmail.com, and I'll publish all that fit in the rules on the blog and again on Facebook!