Note: this past weekend, the folks at our sister paper Riverfront Times ventured into the breach that is the Gathering of the Juggalos in Hardin County, Illinois. Rocks Off is amazed they made it out in one piece... especially considering the food on offer there.
One of the true hardships that we face as a nation is the omnipresent problem of being surrounded by booze and stimulating foods. In the comforts of your own home, you may be able to curb your pizza roll addiction into having just a civilized cup of tomato soup.
Drew Ailes Wondering what's in a "stoner bowl?" Keep reading.
At the Gathering of the Juggalos, you face a different world. Out here, it's harder than ever to think of your overall health as it becomes more about shoving as much crap into your body before a spray-painted golf cart driven by a man wearing nothing but overalls crashes into you.
The Gathering of the Juggalos: Misconceptions and First Impressions Death at Juggalo Gathering: "Four Dudes Had Been Sleeping With a Corpse" Ten Things You Don't Need When Camping With Juggalos The Gathering of the Juggalos' Best Overheard Quotes
If you're truly wise, the short-term questions like, "will this product make whiskey and bile shoot out of my nose" will still dart in and out of your conscious, non-reptilian brain.
I'm a gluttonous freak when it comes to food. I am the direct descendent of a man who once ate five pounds of lasagna over the course of five hours. So of course, I did what any decent journalist at a festival for drug-crazed and murderous clowns would do and gorged myself full of fried fat and processed sugar while studying the weird food of others.
I started with the pizza, which was not very good and was served in a disappointing, meager portion. The crust was bland but the sauce had a satisfying acidic taste. I did not get a picture of the slice that I threw up. However, the pizza sitting in the urinal should convey the right feeling I'm looking for. Curiously, the box for the pizza was right outside of the toilet, meaning someone opened the box up, took the pizza out, and smashed it into this urinal.
Better food was better found elsewhere the next morning. We found ribs, fried chicken on a stick, and pork chops. We saw pancakes cooked with Faygo. Daniel mowed down a turkey leg the way we all do -- with enthusiasm before remembering those creepy stringy bones in the middle. I stood looking on, dipping my fried chicken in a mixture of tater tots and gravy that I had engineered like a fat idiot.
Drew Ailes Chicken on a stick!
Later, we tried to strike up a political debate with the counter person at an Anarchist Pretzel/Snow Cone spot before everyone involved decided they were bored.
Drew Ailes Anarchist pretzels.
We capped off another evening of slamming warm beers and eating weak Jell-O shots with two helpings of Stoner Bowls.
Served in a foam bowl, the Stoner Bowl is a bunch of French fries, peppers, onions, Philly steak meat, and cheese on top. Hardly brilliant, it was probably the tastiest thing we ate from the stands.
Drew Ailes The stoner bowl.
The "walking taco" came in second, which is just a bag of Fritos filled a bunch of warm who-gives-a-shit.
Drew Ailes The "walking taco."
Off the main drag, Juggalos also cooked up burgers and hot dogs on tiny grills, staring at us with apathy when asked if we could take a picture of their home-cooked cuisine. "they're just burgers, dawg," remarked a sunburnt kid wearing a matchy-matchy black and red t-shirt with black and red shorts. Another attendee cooked hot dogs, pork chops, and creamed corn in his tent.
On the third day of Juggalo Christmas, we heard the legend of The Burrito Guy, a creature hidden somewhere on the campgrounds that made the finest burritos known to man. Powered by an intense stomach-boner, I began asking person after person the next morning and afternoon where I could find The Burrito Man.
"I've been coming here for twelve years and I've never heard of that guy."
"I've heard of him. I've never seen him though. I think he's like, a unicorn or some shit." "I dunno, but they got burritos over at the turkey leg stand."
Our search for the burrito man continues on the next page.