Nothing says Fall like a bountiful banquet of belt-bursting bites. And nothing says that many B-sounds like a mouth full of pie. No, nerds, not the r2 kind. The rcircle kind. And what better place for a celebration of the president of pastries than all-American, small-town Lexington, VA, where a variety of local homemade pies were on display during September 19th’s Rockbridge Pie Festival.
The event kicked off and then did a quick breast-stroke with the Mincemeat Mile Swim at 9AM at the Lexington City Pool, presumably a preemptive attack on the calories to come. This sounded somewhat grueling for a weekend morning though, what with the words “mincemeat,” “mile,” “swim,” and “9AM,” so I opted to let others have the glory and hit snooze.
A few nights before the Fest, I loaded another of my accumulated millions of free hours of AOL cd-roms into my computer’s drive and evaded the virtual advances of hundreds of singles in my area who wanted to chat with me – which was shocking; I was surprised to learn that hundreds of people in Lexington have functional internet connections at any given time. Upon perusing the Fest’s website, I discovered a page devoted to “piekus,” a portmanteau of “pie” and “haiku” that made me feel better about my often awful puns and, by extension, myself. In a pieghtened mood, I submitted a trio of my own piekus. The best verses would be displayed on the website, and I’d been hankering for that prestige for a good fifteen minutes by then.
Once all the thought of swimming had made me good and hungry, I threw on some clothes and sauntered down to the warm, gooey center of Pie Fest, Brewbaker Field. Checking the pieku page once more on my phone, I found cute homages to and sober contemplations on the dessert of honor. But conspicuously absent, like a cartoon pie left cooling on a windowsill, were my attempts at pietry, which, for piesterity’s sake, follow:
1. If the Good Lord meant
For us to eat pies with forks,
We would not have jaws.
2. Good old rhubarb pie,
Seasoned, crusty, and bitter,
Not unlike grandpa.
3. I feel ashamed of
How much time I spent tonight
Perhaps the pie-ers-that-be wanted something a bit more traditional, but your unassuming journalist refuses to kowtow to Big Homemade Pie. In fact, rather than stomach humble pie, I descended from my car and began a revolution – in the sense that I started from the parking lot, made a complete circle of the grounds, and came back to the same place I’d embarked from.
Along the way, I may have stomached some actual pie. And by “some actual pie,” I mean “an ungodly amount of pie.” Chocolate, apple, coconut cream, peach, blackberry, even rhubarb, just to name several too many for one person’s appetite. While I abandoned first forks and then hands and dignity in an effort to get pie from plate to palate as efficiently as possible, all around me kids giggled over water balloon fights, slip-and-slides, and pool games, and adults ate more sensibly. I learned too late of the pie eating contest held later in the day, from which I’d unwittingly disqualified my already sweet-packed gullet.
All in all, the water sports seemed to go swimmingly, and the pastry happenings went pieingly. I had a slice of every pie listed above and took one for the road. (See Chart 1, which represents the number of slices remaining in a pie proportional to the number of slices I inhaled in an hour; and Chart 2, which shows the gross guilt incurred from said inhalation. Warning to the legal-minded: Here be maths.)
Chart 1. Chart 2.
And before I succumb to the inevitable sugar crash, I want to encourage you all to help yourselves to a gluttonous slice of Rockbridge County while you’re here. This little place has a lot to offer, if you’re willing to get out there with a good attitude and cram pie in your face hole when the occasion demands it.