Baxter Black: Secret Seasoning
On the Edge of Common Sense
Sometimes it is embarrassing when your friends catch that entrepreneurial spirit. How many times have you gently tried to tell them that, sure, Amway’s great, but what are ya gonna do with all that soap in the closet? That you don’t really need a water filter, or that networking chain letters is not your bag. I used to have a weakness for get-rich-quick schemes, but now I run cows and dabble in Iraqi real estate.
Years ago, one of my friends was exploring the marketing possibilities of his latest venture which followed his unsuccessful Starling Sanctuary and the pencils made of duck feet. He planned to supplant Mutant Ninja Pizza as the greatest thing since sliced cheese! Jim’s Secret Seasoning! To enhance your BBQ experience! He closed his eyes as visions of Secret Seasoning blanketed the earth like volcanic ash. You could almost smell the belch of Mt. St. Helens. “But we gotta have a gimmick,” he said.
We ordered another round of Cactus Perrier and explored alternative uses. It should be, we figgered, the only Secret Seasoning that could be bought by the yard, in bulk, like concrete or barley. Delivered in a 20-ton end dump direct to the spice rack or the driveway! It could be applied to icy sidewalks or intersections. One could market it as a spray or cologne to be dabbed gently on the upper lip or around the sweat band, wherever perspiration would bring out its true essence. Powder it in your shoes to prevent offensive odors. Or market it as an air freshener in the shape of a Sage Grouse to be dangled from the rear view mirror!
Jim’s Secret Seasoning could be used to disguise the real flavor of fruitcake, Metamusil or airline food. It could be served at cocktail parties next to the punch bowl, in the fifty-pound block! The list of potential uses was endless; tanning hides, pickling fatback, wart removal, dumpster disinfectant, insecticide flavoring, cellulite peel…we planned on and on, calculating fertilizer spreaders, railroad cars and supertankers scattering Secret Seasoning to the ends of the earth!
Exhausted and pink with excitement, he presented me a 4 oz. bottle of his miraculous concoction. It was Grandpa’s recipe, he said reverently. He said he used it to flush his mules.
I wished him luck and bought half interest in the company for twelve dollars. Jim’s Secret Seasoning…If you’ve got a secret, we’ve got the seasoning!