So I have another secret and I guess I’ll let that one out now, too.  I’m an “o fish hull” graduate of the University of Alabama – and I have a child there.

Wasn’t my idea.  I tried to get her to go to the University of Tennessee in Knoxville (yes, even overlooking that awful, awful orange).  UT is a good school, good facilities, beautiful campus and they don’t try to rape your bank account quite like UA.  But such are the decisions of one’s children…

It was a quick visit – take her to the grocery store and load up on the staples, take her to the mall, make sure she has her Starbucks card full ‘o money.  But the “take her to lunch” part – oh the sweet angels of heaven!  We went to the Cypress Inn on the beautiful Black Warrior river.  Click that link back there and make a note – drive 50 miles out of your way and go eat there!  Here’s why:

  • The location
  • The landscaping
  • The food
  • The service
  • The prices

1.  It’s absolutely breath-takingly beautiful there!  The landscaping is magnificent! Not in a fussy kind of way but in a very natural, lovely way.

Sit out on the deck overlooking the river!

2.  The food is fabulous and extremely fairly priced.  Yes, they fry stuff.  It’s the South, what do you expect?  Here’s a tip – temper your “fry-fear” with a superb dish of fried green tomatoes!  With crumbled feta and the Cypress Inn’s special Memphis Sauce (not givin’ that one away – you’ve got to try it – a bit like a remoulade).  Light, crispy, tangy, not greasy – and it’s a vegetable!  All better now?

3.  They have a chef who used to work in the casinos in Biloxi, and he is a very talented man.  Ode to his fresh-picked blueberry pie follows below.

4.  The service is fast and friendly and your glass never goes empty, a sure sign that the tip meter is running.

Hey!  Here’s a question for discussion – what is your tip meter?  You know what I’m talking about – your iced tea glass has been empty for 5 minutes and you’ve only half-finished your meal.  You give up your pride and move it to the outside of the table – right on the edge.  Five minutes later your completely give up any sense of respectability, poke a straw in it and suck HARD, making a loud, obnoxious sound not at all unlike the little tube the dentist uses to suck away saliva just before the drill…’ve been there. 

My tip meter starts running, downward, when the glass goes to the edge of the table.  And it bottoms out at the dramatic straw trick.  What’s your limit?  I feel another Contest coming on!  Send your tip meter experiences (good and bad) to and I’ll post the first ten here next week!  And because I’m just like this, I’ll send the top ten one of these –  

Cute, no?  I promise – no spam, you won’t make any email lists, and I won’t send you junk mail.  So enter quickly!  And thanks in advance!

Now, Ode to The Cypress Inn Blueberry Pie


Like WOW!

Blueberries picked minutes ago from the bushes outside!

With a crust like NOBODY MAKES ANYMORE – flaky, hand rolled, exquisite!

Hey server!  Bring me another!

Wait!  No.  A perfect moment cannot be duplicated.

Kinda spiritual, don’t cha think?

Next – the illustration – remember, it’s a camera phone and I was in a stupor…

 OK – we started in on it before I remembered to take a pic.  Sorry!  That’s a home-made right-there-on-the-spot scoop o vanilla ice cream there!

 Here’s a closeup of the flakiness – seriously – who does this anymore?

Alright, deeeep breath – gush concluded.

So please remember to Celebrate Something Everyday – and enter the Contest!  Yahoo!  Free stuff!