When is a burger a burger?

Published 12:00 am Sunday, August 4, 2002

The pharmacy up in Chuckatuck, the one that made young Chris Jones famous and headed him toward the big house in Richmond, will open again. We’ve been saying for months, we who live in that area, that we needed a place close by for lunch and/or breakfast. Our prayers have been answered by Karen and Jim Hiles, who two years ago moved here from crowded Virginia Beach, about the time the gift shop/restaurant went belly up. If these two cuisine connoisseurs can produce what they claim they can put fresh on your plate, they can expect business. I will go almost anywhere in the world for a good half-pound burger cooked medium rare. The nearest is Cowlings in Smithfield, but his is a mere seven ounces. Maybe one ounce is negligible but it’s the principle of the thing. Who wants to say that his burger weighed 7/16 of a pound? And I can’t even imagine watching a cook slice up a potato and turn it into french fries. Most I’ve seen came sliding frozen out of a bag. I’m not sure the restaurant name &uot;Fat Boys&uot; contributes anything – there is not one fat boy in Chuckatuck. September opening.


We should all congratulate the 19 persons who graduated from the STOP Center for Employment Training, and the STOP organization for providing the 19 with the educational program to become nurses’ aides. Hospitals all over the nation are hunting for medically trained personnel. This should encourage many others to take advantage of the STOP program. Eighty percent of this graduating class is already employed as nurses’ aides. It would lead to much improvement in this nation if STOP were funded to the degree it could also provide training in other fields. We would all benefit.


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How about that police efficiency? Look at the sheet they laid on one of the suspects caught in the net after attempting to rob the Southern Food store: conspiracy to commit a felony, eluding police (felony), suspended license, reckless driving, and no seat belt. He should be forgiven that latter charge because in order to elude police after the car stopped, he had to release the belt. This is actually to his intellectual credit if he anticipated dashing off in the dark and released it while the car was in motion. I bet any attorney worth his salt will get that last charge dismissed. If not, think of the wasted court time as they attempt to establish exactly when the belt was released. The only one that could testify correctly might be the other passenger and who would believe him?


A salute to Sharon L. Dewitt, director on Meals on Wheels, and her many volunteers for the important work they do in our town. In her short time in the position she has proved she is the right person for the job. You have to be a top salesperson as well as being organized, to solicit funds and sell others on the good feelings that come with community service. Based upon the number of volunteers, Meals on Wheels, hospitals, libraries, etc., Suffolk has a large group of selfless people, which makes it a good time to live here.

When you think about the stock market, terrorists, and a zillion other problems surfacing all over the country, it’s great that our biggest problems out here in the rural outpost, are rabid raccoons, would-be robbers, and keeping a lid on developers.


So cocaine was a factor in the death of rocker John Entwistle. So who is surprised and who cares? Like who cares that Phil Donahue is back on television. I was tickled pink when he retired and, I hoped, took his millions to some South Sea island where he could convince the natives that liberalism was good. I have a tough time believing Phil actually swallows the stuff he spews. He is opposite Mr. O, one of the toughest independents in the land, and doesn’t have a prayer. MSNBC will soon holler uncle.


Seven out of 10 smokers want to quit. Doesn’t your heart go out to these poor souls? I can take the guy who says he loves to smoke and won’t hear about giving it up. But these sissies, these weaklings that want to quit but don’t have what it takes make me ill. There is a solution: quit wanting to quit and die like so many others do, a hard, awful way. Maybe you just need the motivation I found back in 1970 from a doctor who looked me straight in the eye and said, &uot;Another year and you are beyond help.&uot; I had, like many smokers, grown accustomed to gasping, hacking, choking, and smelling like a spittoon. I’d spent many hours looking for even a butt of a cig, late at night after the 7-11 had closed. It was a habit &uot;forced&uot; upon me as a soldier, to be a man. Smoking damn near killed me when I started and the lack of it was hell when I quit. Smoking was probably the most expensive, stupid habit I acquired. I figure I had the brains of a squirrel when I picked up my first pack of Camels. I was reborn in 1970 and now look upon smokers as masochists with tobacco as their abusing lover. No sympathy from this quarter.

Robert Pocklington is a resident of Suffolk and a regular News-Herald columnist.