Monday, November 30, 2009


I am safely ensconced in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, MOST grateful to be staying in a hotel voluntarily, instead of under duress, which I was when my car's alternator went *croak* on my last trip south.  However, I am not SO joyous that I'm inclined to break into a chorus of "Sweet Home Alabama" - or "Elvira," for that matter. Believe me, that's all for the better.

Actually, today was mostly uneventful. Most of my day was spent driving - and the drive from my grandad's place to here was really QUITE similar to my drive from there to Memphis - I just diverted when I got to Nashville. And unfortunately, once I hit territory I'd never seen it was overcast or dark.

So most of my amusement came from listening to my MP3 player on random - with a music collection as weird diverse as mine,  you get some truly wild segues. My favorite was "The Magic Store" from The Muppet Movie being immediately followed by Bryan Adams' "Cuts Like a Knife." Going from "I am the Very Model of a Cartoon Individual" from the Animaniacs soundtrack to the Rolling Stones' "Wild Horses" was trippy too. Yes, I'm weird and don't care what anyone thinks.

Beyond such musical mash-ups, my only real adventure today was visiting Dreamland BBQ in Tuscaloosa, on the recommendation of my dad. This is the kind of place you'd find on the Food Network's Drive-Ins, Diners and Dives - and indeed, this joint is a mix of all three.  This was the original location, so it has a ragtag sort of atmosphere - it's basically a sports bar with a few tables and three or four booths in a building that's almost ramshackle. At the same time, there's none of that bland, corporatized feel that permeates so many chains these days. Therere are all kinds of football pictures and memorabilia on the walls - Paul "Bear" Bryant stuff, and Crimson Tide gear, natch.

The menu is pretty slim pickins - basically, ribs, sausage, banana pudding and ribs. Even before I order, my server hands me six slices of white break and a cup of sauce to dunk it in.  I guess this is the opposite of an aftertaste.

 I order the half-slab of ribs, and they're pretty tasty - nice and thick, and the sauce has a vinegary tang to it, which makes it distinct. It's not up to, say, Montgomery Inn in Ohio or my all-time favorite, the Bar-B-Q Shop in Memphis, but it holds up.

For dessert, I order the banana pudding, since that's all there is to order, sweets, wise, and I like that QUITE a lot - even more so than the ribs, I'd say. Perfect mix of taste and texture. I should have sprung for more.

Finally, just to give you an exquisite taste of the atmosphere of this place, I snapped a shot of the ads on the table. Yes, that's a Roto-Rooter ad, right next to the Dreamland logo.

Draw your own conclusions.

Monday will be my first day in NOLA, although since  I won't get there until the afternoon, I'm not sure what I'll have time to do, but I will have something to share, I'm sure. I'm generous that way.


  1. From the looks of things you will be gaining a lot of weight! Some good eatin!

  2. Hooray for wild and varied Musical Tastes!!

    I just had dinner, and the pictures of your food are still making me hungry.