In an article titled “Dust-up In Milam County: RL Reeves Jr Eats At Barron’s Hamburger Haven In Thorndale. Avoids Jail time” I related a tale of how trying to get a hot plate lunch up in Thorndale, Texas almost resulted in a visit to the Milam County hoosegow. Apparently there were other eaters up Thorndale who had similar, if not identical, experiences as the ill-fated burger stand is now shuttered.
There’s a compact that exists between diner and restaurateur. The diner enters the restaurant, places their order, eats, pays and leaves. In exchange for this, it’s assumed that the restaurant owner will neglect calling the local police force to query the diner as to why they just ate said meal and why they chose to visit the community the restaurant is located in.
Having successfully negotiated this unspoken compact thousands of times in my career as an eater, I was surprised to finally find the document wadded up and thrown in the trash can of a fly-blown diner in Milam County.
My article drew a compelling comment from a Thorndale local:
“that is your opinion. that is very rude for you to come in this town and act like a jackass .we are a very good nice town and like family . and about SAN GABRIEL is a nice country place . maybe we should go to your town and do that to yall . please do not down our town i am sick and tired of people doing this . tempers can fly and maybe you dont know about country folks . and that jailtime thats sick and you as a grown man knows better. our police are just fine here . i am very dissapointed in this . i hope i never meet you in real person . do you like to ruin peoples lives ? the people doing the hamburger place had their house burned down in bastrop during the fire . what if it happened to you ? how do you like me now ? mr know it all.”
Interesting in the fact that the responder mysteriously brings San Gabriel, Texas into the conversation. Not sure what it has to do with my narration.
As I left Barron’s Hamburger Haven that day I offered my usual goodbye “That was great.” The woman behind the counter’s face was twisted with hate and I barely made it out the door before she was probably dialing 911 to see if she could fuck up my day a little bit.
I’ve dined in hundreds of restaurants on 3 continents and this meal in Thorndale, Texas is still the oddest dining experience I ever had.
Rest In Peace Barron’s Hamburger Haven. I hardly knew ye.
and a narration of my run in with the law in Thorndale