Seems everybody knew everybody else’s name

Those young men really know how to toss things. Usually it’s a basketball through a hoop in the gym, but Friday night they had a different job.

With gloved hands, Sacred Heart’s boys’ basketball team flung fish fillets into plastic bins and doused them with fine flour breading. I hear it’s a secret breading recipe, so don’t even think about asking for it.

These are intense nose-to-the-grind-stone young men, just like they are when they’re on the court winning a game.

After breading, the fillets were taken over by a team of dads manning three deep fryers.

It was precision plus – even better than clockwork!

There were a couple of track stars in the kitchen as well: Pat Phaneuf, athletic director, and Sacred Heart Senior Corey Roach were “the runners.” They kept the serving table supplied with trays of fillets ready to be placed on plates.

Corey’s dad, Todd Roach, teased his son suggesting he work that hard at home.

As for me, I had the best job in the house at Sacred Heart’s Fish Fry No. 4. I was the privileged server of all those fillets to two steady streams of people for two solid hours.

Everybody, and I mean everybody, wore a sun shiny face, brought pleasant greetings and even a joke now and then.

The best yarn of the night was, “Know why you don’t want to iron your four leaf clover?” a fellow asked.

“No,” I said, “why don’t I want to iron my four leaf clover?”

“Because,” he responded. “You don’t want to press your luck.”

So then I had my own joke to tell. It was this: I caught all that fish myself at Lake of the Woods!

And through it all, Tom Kaiser was right behind me fixin’ diners up with a Red River Valley baked red potato. It doesn’t get any better than a red. 

As for Tom? Well, he’s a one-man hootenanny. 

I want to say a heartfelt “thank you,” to the people of Sacred Heart for inviting me to host one of their Lenten fish fries. It was tremendous fun and the whole evening put me in a “Cheers,” state of mind.

Ever since last Friday night, the theme song from the 1980s television show has been running through my mind – with a minor word adjustment:

It goes like this:

“Sometimes you want to go where everybody knows everybody else’s name. And they’re always glad you came. You wanna be where you can see our troubles are all the same. You wanna be where everybody knows everybody else’s name.”

Friday night we heard 789 people had gone through the line. Monday night I was told we actually hit 800. Yahoo!

Just think – 800 people knowing everybody else’s name. At least it seemed that way.

As for me, I wouldn’t want to live anywhere else than right here in beautiful downtown small America.

 Until Soon

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